Overnight Donald Trump‘s handpicked representative to the National Archives published a letter that made major revelations in the case of the former President’s retention of and refusal to return classified documents and other White House records that belong to the federal government.
That letter was written by the National Archives (NARA) and published by John Solomon, a longtime right-wing writer with a history of promoting conspiracy theories, on his Just the News website. It includes revelations that Trump, at Mar-a-Lago, had far more classified documents than ever previously reported.
“The National Archives found more than 700 pages of classified material — including ‘special access program materials,’ some of the most highly classified secrets in government — in 15 boxes recovered from Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in January, according to correspondence between the National Archivist and his legal team,” Politico reports, citing the letter from NARA published on Solomon’s website.
“In total,” The New York Times Monday evening had reported, before the publication of the NARA letter, “the government has recovered more than 300 documents with classified markings from Mr. Trump since he left office.” (There is a difference between “pages” and “documents” – one document could have several pages.)
The recovered items include “that first batch of documents returned in January, another set provided by Mr. Trump’s aides to the Justice Department in June and the material seized by the F.B.I. in the search this month.”
Legal experts have been left stunned and shocked at this recent revelation, especially given that just hours earlier on Monday Trump sued the federal government demanding a special master be appointed to review every item federal agents recovered from Mar-a-Lago and block the Dept. of Justice from having access to those items, including the classified documents.
“Trump knew he had materials that could damage national security, whether he faux-declassified them or not & used delay & claims of exec[utive] privilege to try to keep them out of DOJ’s hands,” wrote former U.S, Attorney Joyce Vance, pointing to the Politico report. She notes that The New York Times’ “story adds Trump reviewed documents before Jan[uary] turnover to DOJ.”
“Not all cases of mishandling sensitive materials get prosecuted. Those that do seem to have a ‘plus factor,’ like Gen’l Petraeus who disseminated materials,” she explained, referring to former CIA Director David Petraeus who shared classified documents with his biographer. “Here, Trump let numerous people without classification authority have access. Everyone from movers to lawyers.”
“After years of watching Trump manage to worm his way out of justice, I think Justice is finally coming for him,” Vance concluded.