Ex-GOP rep blames arrest on 'deep state' conspiracy
© Greg Nash

The former Texas congressman charged with conspiring to violate federal election laws is blaming his arrest on the "deep state," claiming he is being framed by a shadow government.

Former Rep. Steve StockmanStephen (Steve) Ernest StockmanInmates break windows, set fires in riot at Kansas prison Wife of imprisoned former congressman cites COVID-19 risk in plea to Trump for husband's freedom Consequential GOP class of 1994 all but disappears MORE (R-Texas) made the comment appearing before a U.S. magistrate judge on Friday after the criminal charges against him were unsealed, the Houston Chronicle reported.

"This is part of a deep state that's continuing to progress," the Chronicle quoted Stockman as saying. He claimed that he was being framed for his opposition to the IRS.

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Stockman is accused of illegally diverting hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations to a charitable organization he created. The Texas representative allegedly planned to use donations from his employees to funnel money to himself for personal use.

Stockman served two terms in Congress; once from 1995 to 1997 and later from 2013 to 2015. He lost a bid for the Senate in 2014 to incumbent Sen. John CornynJohn CornynCOVID-19 bill limiting liability would strike the wrong balance From a Republican donor to Senate GOP: Remove marriage penalty or risk alienating voters Skepticism grows over Friday deadline for coronavirus deal MORE (R-Texas).

The "deep state" conspiracy theory holds that a shadow government of unelected bureaucrats are in control of the government and work behind the scenes to rule the country, to the detriment of President Trump and supportive Republicans. 

White House press secretary Sean Spicer last week alluded to the conspiracy theory, saying may be a network of federal government employees resisting Trump.

“I think there’s no question when you have eight years of one party in office that stays in government [they’re] affiliated with, joined [to] and continue to espouse the agenda of the previous administration,” Spicer answered, referencing former President Obama’s two terms in office.

Stockman was arrested at Bush International Airport in Houston, Texas, on Thursday, where he said he was catching a flight to the United Arab Emirates to help Sunni Muslims, according to the Chronicle.