Republicans are crying foul following the news of President Biden’s Department of Justice (DOJ) targeting West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s (R) family.
Justice, who is also a GOP Senate candidate hoping to unseat Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), is the latest to experience political targeting from Biden’s DOJ, as it has filed a civil complaint against his family’s coal empire — over a dozen coal businesses ran or owned by his son Jay Justice — citing “repeated violations of the law” in hopes of recovering what the assistant attorney general of the DOJ’s Environment and Natural Resources Division Todd Kim described as “penalties they owe as a result of those violations.”
“Our environmental laws serve to protect communities against adverse effects of industrial activities including surface coal mining operations,” Kim said in a statement. “Through this suit, the Justice Department seeks to deliver accountability for defendants’ repeated violations of the law and to recover the penalties they owe as a result of those violations.”
U.S. Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh for the Western District of Virginia claimed defendants have “engaged in over 130 violations of federal law, thereby posing health and safety risks to the public and the environment” over the past five years, concluding the Justice family businesses “failed to remedy those violations and were ordered over 50 times to cease mining activities until their violations were abated.”
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“Today, the filing of this complaint continues the process of holding defendants accountable for jeopardizing the health and safety of the public and our environment,” he added.
According to a press release detailing the civil action, total penalties and fees come to roughly $7.6 million.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) was among the first to accuse the Biden DOJ of sheer abuse of power, connecting the announcement to Justice’s recent candidacy for Senate.
“Joe Biden’s Department of Justice has gone totally rogue. Democrats weaponizing the federal government to attack the family of a Republican Senate candidate is a complete abuse of power,” NRSC spokesman Tate Mitchell stated:
“Did anyone really think that Biden’s weaponization of the DOJ to target his political opponents was going to stop with Trump?” Donald Trump Jr. asked:
“So Biden is weaponizing the DOJ to attack the family of a Republican Senate candidate. Total abuse of power,” GOP strategist Andrew Surabian observed:
“Utterly brazen,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) remarked. “When I said the Biden DOJ is the most political & partisan DOJ in history, I wasn’t kidding…”:
“The Biden Justice Department is working to help the Democrats. This is a crisis for America,” Richard Grenell added:
The DOJ’s action comes on the heels of recent polling showing Justice leading Manchin by double digits as he hopes to unseat the Democrat to help Republicans take back the majority in the Senate: