GOP's Scott Perry flees questions about FBI seizing his phone and searching Trump's home
Congressman Scott Perry speaks during CPAC Texas 2022 conference at Hilton Anatole. (lev radin /

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) ran away from reporters' questions about FBI agents seizing his phone and searching for purported nuclear weapons documents at Donald Trump's private residence.

The Pennsylvania Republican, who was identified in House select committee testimony as playing a central role in the false electors scheme, said earlier this week that investigators had taken his cell phone seeking evidence in the Jan. 6 case, but he told The Raw Story that he was not a target.

"I'm not a target of the investigation," Perry said. "That's directly from my lawyers, from DOJ. I don't know what it's about or why they are interested."

The lawmaker declined to say whether investigators were acting in good faith as he sped through the U.S. Capitol away from reporters, and he declined to say whether GOP rhetoric had motivated an Ohio man to attack the FBI office in Cincinnati three days after the Mar-A-Lago search.

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"I'm not going to honor the question with an answer," Perry said.

Perry also declined to answer questions about the materials FBI agents are believed to have been looking for when they executed a search warrant.

"You have to talk to the president," Perry said, racing away as reporters asked when was the last time he spoke to Trump.

Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday he had "personally approved" the dramatic raid on Donald Trump's Florida home and, in a highly unusual move, was requesting the warrant justifying the search be made public.

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The country's top prosecutor did not reveal the reason for the unprecedented search of the residence of a former American president, and condemned "unfounded attacks" on the FBI and the Justice Department that followed it.

"I personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant," Garland told reporters. "The department does not take such a decision lightly."

"The search warrant was authorized by a federal court upon the required finding of probable cause," he said.

While noting that "ethical obligations" prevented him detailing the basis of the raid, Garland said he had asked a Florida judge to unseal the warrant because Trump had publicly confirmed the search and because of the "substantial public interest in this matter."

With additional reporting by Matt Laslo and AFP