During a meeting with the National Sheriff’s Association this Monday, President Trump raised a few eyebrows when he offered to “destroy” a Texas lawmaker’s career at the behest of a sheriff who didn’t like his legislation.
The sheriff, Harold Eavenson of Rockwell County, Texas, mentioned an unnamed senator who was introducing legislation that would require a conviction before police could seize forfeiture money, jokingly adding that “the [drug cartels] would build a monument” to the senator if the legislation were to pass.
“Who is the state senator? Do you want to give his name? We’ll destroy his career,” Trump replied.
Although he wasn’t the subject of the sheriff’s comment, Pennsylvania Democratic Senator Daylin Leach also supports civil asset forfeiture reform. In a Twitter post this Tuesday, he dared trump to come after him as well.
“Hey! I oppose civil asset forfeiture too,” Leach wrote on Facebook and Twitter. “Why don’t you come after me you fascist, loofa-faced sh*t-gibbon!!”
Hey @realDonaldTrump I oppose civil asset forfeiture too! Why don't you try to destroy my career you fascist, loofa-faced, shit-gibbon!
— Daylin Leach (@daylinleach) February 7, 2017
Proponents of civil asset forfeiture argue that while sometimes a conviction of an individual isn’t attained, the money or property seized was still used in criminal activity. Opponents argue the procedure has been used without strict regulation to take and keep property from innocent individuals.
Leach’s spokesman later argued in a statement that the Senator’s anger was justified.
“President Trump blithely talked about destroying the career of a man who disagreed with Trump on a policy issue,” the statement read. “Then Trump laughed about it, which is just what you’d expect from someone who gets his kicks firing people on national television. Trump just continues to undermine democratic norms, America’s system of checks and balances, and the general principle of human decency. Senator Leach is mad as hell about it, as you can see from his tweet.”