Republicans Expected to Grill Biden's National Archivist Nominee in Retaliation for Mar-A-Lago WarrantHistorians in the News
tags: FBI, National Archives, Donald Trump, Presidential Records
The Yale Ph.D. who’s been nominated to lead the National Archives faces a hostile path to confirmation as GOP senators vow to “absolutely demand answers” after the agency prompted the FBI search of Donald Trump’s home.
Colleen Shogan, a former deputy director at the Library of Congress who writes whodunit murder mysteries in her spare time, was tapped by President Joe Biden on Aug. 3 to take over the agency best known for housing the original Declaration of Independence.
Her nomination -- four months after the previous director retired -- was just another shuffle of the DC bureaucracy, barely noticed outside the circle of historians and academics who rely on the repository of federal records. That was until FBI agents swarmed Trump’s palatial Florida estate in search of classified documents.
The search, conducted because the National Archives and Records Administration told the Justice Department that top secret records were in some of the boxes of White House material Trump had turned over previously, changed the stakes.
The move ignited a furious reaction from Republican office holders and party operatives -- none more enraged than the former president himself, who has accused the FBI of planting evidence and being on a political witch hunt. His supporters in the Senate seem eager to take up the charge.
GOP Senator Rick Scott, a member of the panel that will consider Shogan’s nomination “absolutely will demand answers” about the search as part of Shogan’s confirmation proceedings, said Clare Lattanze, a spokesperson for Scott.
Another Republican on the committee, Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma, also plans to closely question Shogan. He and Scott have already requested a full committee briefing by the FBI, the Justice Department and the National Archives, citing “significant questions” about the basis for the search of Trump’s property.
Shogan, 46, the first woman to be nominated Archivist of the United States, will go before a panel that also includes hard-line Republican Trump defenders Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Josh Hawley of Missouri and Rand Paul of Kentucky. Representatives of the three senators didn’t respond to requests for comment, nor did committee staff.
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