It was vital for former President Donald Trump to demand the affidavit used to obtain a search warrant for his Florida home be made public, considering how the affidavit for approval from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that was used in the FBI's surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page was falsified, Paul Manafort, Trump's 2016 campaign chairman, tells Newsmax.
"It's just another act in their play," Manafort said on Newsmax's "Wake Up America" about the affidavit hearing being held later in the day Thursday in Miami. "It's the affidavit that has all the information, not the warrant, and identifies what they're looking for."
The search, Manafort added, was a "fishing expedition because they're paranoid" that Trump could run against President Joe Biden in 2024, and that creates a "constitutional crisis."
"Never in the history of this country has the government's judicial system gone after a former candidate," said Manafort. "I remind people that in 2016, when Hillary Clinton was under investigation for having classified documents on her server that was hacked by foreign enemies, all the campaign rallies at Trump's events talked about, 'Lock her up.'"
But Trump didn't have Clinton arrested when he became president, said Manafort, "because he understood that it's tin-horn democracies, banana republics that go after their political opponents."
Trump was not only Biden's political opponent in 2020, but he could become one again in 2024, Manafort pointed out.
"Biden knows that, yet he leveraged his Justice Department, and certainly the White House knew" about the raid, said Manafort. "He allowed his Justice Department to take this unprecedented step for a fishing expedition with no basis for it at all."
Meanwhile, Manafort, who has been advising political candidates since the 1970s, said the case has been made for Trump to run again in 2024.
"If you look at the successes of the Trump administration, you know they are the exact areas where the Biden administration has failed miserably," said Manafort. "Trump ran in 2015, not for political power and aggrandizement, but he ran because he thought the swamp was not keeping its promises to the American people. He promised to make a difference, which he did."
And now, the need for someone like Trump in the White House is "greater now in some respects than it was in 2016, and I think he will respond to the call again," said Manafort. "He views himself as a messenger for the people."
Meanwhile, when asked his relationship with Trump now, Manafort, who is promoting his autobiography, "Political Prisoner," said he doesn't "go into that," but noted that Trump pardoned him and has tweeted a "very positive statement about my book" in the past few days.
Manafort also said he decided to publish his book "because the truth never came out during the 2016-2020 cycle."
"I was a target to get Donald Trump, and in the course of that they put a gag order on me and they threw me into solitary confinement," said Manafort, who was convicted of tax fraud and other crimes. "They wanted me to give them Donald Trump. So in the story in the book, I talk about the broader themes of the dangers of the deep state, the risk that they present not to just people like myself and the president, but everyday, ordinary Americans."
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