Donald Trump, former President of the United States, has formally appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Mar-a-Lago documents case.
On Tuesday, Trump’s legal team asked Justice Clarence Thomas to issue an “emergency order” that would “restore an outside reviewer’s authority over about 100 documents found at Mar-a-Lago with classification markings during the Aug. 8 search,” Politico reported.
“Such a move would make it easier for Trump to continue to pursue claims that those documents, some marked ‘Top Secret,’ or with even more restrictive classifications, should not be in the hands of Justice Department investigators because they are subject to executive privilege or for other reasons,” the outlet noted.
A Supreme Court victory for Donald Trump would uphold part of Justice Aileen Cannon’s decision to include the approximately 100 purportedly classified records in her original order and keep them under review.
“Any limit on the comprehensive and transparent review of materials seized in the extraordinary raid of a President’s home erodes public confidence in our system of justice,” Trump’s attorneys Christopher Kise, James Trusty, Evan Corcoran and Lindsey Halligan, wrote in the 37-page filing.
The New York Times is already undermining the legitimacy of the Supreme Court to rule in the Mar-a-Lago documents dispute by highlighting the ‘conservative’ viewpoint of several justices, should the court take up Trump’s appeal.
“Although the Supreme Court is dominated by six conservative justices, three of them appointed by Mr. Trump, it has rejected earlier efforts to block the disclosure of information about him, and legal experts said Mr. Trump’s new emergency application faced significant challenges,” the Times remarked.
“The new filing was largely technical, saying that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, in Atlanta, had not been authorized to stay aspects of a trial judge’s order appointing a special master in the case,” the Times added.
“The 11th Circuit lacked jurisdiction to review the special master order, which authorized the review of all materials seized from President Trump’s residence, including documents bearing classification markings,” the application said.
In September, the DOJ took exception to the court’s appointment of a “special master” to review the documents seized at the former president’s property at Mar-a-Lago on August 8 for those covered by attorney-client or executive privilege. However, the Justice Department’s partial appeal did not challenge the appointment of the special master, but rather argued that the documents bearing classified markings be returned.
“Although the government believes the district court fundamentally erred in appointing a special master and granting injunctive relief, the government seeks to stay only the portions of the order causing the most serious and immediate harm to the government and the public by (1) restricting the government’s review and use of records bearing classification markings and (2) requiring the government to disclose those records for a special-master review process,” the DOJ wrote.
Judge Cannon had earlier appointed retired judge Raymond Dearie to review the approximately 100 documents with classified markings, as well as the nearly 11,000 presidential documents that are not marked classified.
“In a 29-page filing, the department asked the appeals court not to submit the roughly 100 files marked as classified through the vetting process of the arbiter, known as a special master — acquiescing to the review for 11,000 other documents seized from Mr. Trump’s home and resort, Mar-a-Lago. The review has frozen the government’s access to the material as it investigates Mr. Trump’s handling of the documents,” the New York Times reported.
Legal observers believe that the Department of Justice may be angling to prosecute the former president on a ‘process crime.’
“The FBI uncovered evidence that the response to the grand-jury subpoena was incomplete, that classified documents likely remained at Mar-a-Lago, and that efforts had likely been undertaken to obstruct the investigation,” the DOJ argued in its appeal.
Hans Mahnke highlighted the appearance that the Department of Justice was laying the groundwork for a “perjury/obstruction” trap.
“DOJ set a perjury/obstruction trap and Trump’s lawyer walked right into it,” Mahnke argued. “They don’t care about classified documents, they’re setting up a process crime.”
No documentation has come to light confirming that Mr. Trump declassified the material, and the potential crimes cited by the Justice Department in seeking the search warrant for Mar-a-Lago would not hinge on the classification status of the documents.
The Wall Street Journal, in a recent editorial on the matter, corroborates the New York Times’ tacit concession that there is no ‘there, there’ in terms of Donald Trump having allegedly committed a crime affecting national security.
Now, the Trump legal team is seeking an end to the charade by appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Current Founder, CEO and Chief Editor of Becker News. Former Writer & Associate Producer at Fox News for #1 top-rated prime-time cable news show. Former Director of Viral Media and Senior Managing Editor for award-winning startup website IJReview, which grew to a readership of 20-30 million Americans a month. Led editorial and social media team that was #1 ranked news & politics publisher on Facebook for story engagement. Writer whose thousands of digital articles have been read by over 100 million unique users.