- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 4, 2022

More than half of Republican voters believe the FBI is acting as President Biden’s personal secret state police, according to a poll released Tuesday.

The Rasmussen Reports survey showed that 61% of likely Republican voters believe the FBI is acting as Mr. Biden’s “Gestapo,” a term for the secret police of Nazi Germany. What’s more, 30% of Democrats and 46% of Independents agreed.

The bureau has been under fire in recent months for appearing partisan, including Attorney General Merrick B. Garland issued a memo in October that directed the FBI and other federal agencies to address the “disturbing spike” in threats against school board members after a wave of parent protests predominately focused against liberal policies.

In a press release accompanying the Oct. 4 memo, Mr. Garland said he expected the FBI to form a task force with representatives from the National Security Division and other federal agencies “to determine how federal enforcement tools can be used to prosecute these crimes.”

Republican lawmakers criticized the directive as federal overreach and an attempt to silence concerned parents. They have also alleged collusion between the White House and the National School Boards Association to target parents.

The survey also found that 46% of likely U.S. voters have a favorable view of the FBI, including 15% who have a very favorable view. The statistics are down from May 2020, when 60% had a favorable view, including 24% who had a very favorable view.

The telephone and online survey of 1,000 likely U.S. voters was conducted between Dec. 29-30 and had a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

• Emily Zantow can be reached at ezantow@washingtontimes.com.

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