By Ashe O
Washington, Aug 16 (IANS): Yet another Trump supporter has turned against him. Laura Ingraham, Fox News host, considered a staunch supporter of the former President, has said that a conflict-weary nation might be ready to move on from Donald Trump and look for someone in the Oval office with his policies minus his baggage.
This came even as Trump demanded release of the full unredacted affidavit underlying the FBI raid on his Florida residence.
Laura Ingraham said it could be time to start looking for someone who has Trump's politics, but not the baggage, should he decide to run again in 2024.
"The country, I think, is so exhausted," she told podcaster Lisa Boothe of The Hill.
"They're so exhausted by the battle, the constant battle, that they may believe that, well, maybe it's time to turn the page if we can get someone who has all Trump's policies, who's not Trump," Ingraham said, adding that Trump has been her friend for 25 years, "but, you know, we'll see whether that's what the country wants," The Huff Post said in an updated run of an article on Monday.
Meanwhile, Trump called for the immediate release of the "completely unredacted" affidavit underlying the FBI raid of his Mar-A-Lago resort in Florida last week.
After the Department of Justice said it did not support releasing the affidavit, Trump claimed on his social media site Truth Social that the move is for the sake of "transparency", and called for Judge Bruce Reinhart, who is overseeing the case, to be recused.
"There is no way to justify the unannounced RAID of Mar-A-Lago, the home of the 45th President of the United States (who got more votes, by far, than any sitting President in the history of our Country!), by a very large number of gun toting FBI Agents, and the Department of 'Justice,'' Trump wrote on the platform late Monday. "But, in the interest of TRANSPARENCY, I call for the immediate release of the completely unredacted affidavit pertaining to this horrible and shocking BREAK-IN," media reports said quoting Trump.
Polls, however, so far show Trump should have a clear path to the GOP nomination should he run again in 2024. However, one poll last month found that more than half of the Republicans want someone else at the top of the ticket. Another poll showed that more than half of all the voters don't want Trump to run again, the Huff Post reported in an updated article.
However, Ingraham, among a number of Fox News personalities supporting Trump publicly, was alarmed behind the scenes on January 6, 2021. In a series of text messages uncovered by the House select committee investigating the Janusary 6 attack on Capitol Hill, Ingraham had urged then White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to have Trump make a statement about the assault on the US Capitol.
"Mark, the President needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home," she had texted.
"This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy."
On TV, Ingraham had called the attack disgraceful. She also claimed "falsely" that Left-wing elements such as "antifa sympathisers" may have been behind it.
Meanwhile the Washington Examiner said Reinhart did allow the release of the court-approved search warrant and an inventory from the Mar-A-Lago raid. The warrant authorised the FBI to seize from Trump's Florida property "all physical documents and records constituting evidence, contraband, fruits of crime, or other items illegally possessed" that may be in violation of three federal statutes, including the Espionage Act.
The Justice Department's 13-page filing argued against the affidavit's release on Monday, media reports said.
"If disclosed, the affidavit would serve as a roadmap to the government's ongoing investigation, providing specific details about its direction and likely course, in a manner that is highly likely to compromise future investigative steps," the filing said.
"The fact that this investigation implicates highly classified materials further underscores the need to protect the integrity of the investigation and exacerbates the potential for harm if information is disclosed to the public prematurely or improperly."
The Department of Justice, however, said that it did not oppose the release of other documents, including the search warrant cover sheets and the motion to seal, according to Fox News.