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Judge asks Trump's lawyers if he declassified records in FBI search

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By Karen Freifeld, Luc Cohen and Sarah N. Lynch

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"If the government gives me prima facie evidence (a legal term meaning a fact presumed to be true unless disproved) that this is classified, and you decide not to advance a claim of declassification ... as far as I'm concerned that's the end of it," Dearie told Trump's lawyers in his first public hearing on the matter.”

45 asked for Dearie. I bet he’s regretting that already. Backed into a corner in the first hearing. Oh dearie!

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Dearie is tasked with recommending to Florida-based U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, who is presiding over the fight over access to the seized documents, which records may be protected by attorney-client confidentiality or an assertion of executive privilege, a legal doctrine under which a president can keep certain documents or information secret.

Judge Cannon is a Trump toady.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Judge Cannon is a Trump toady.

Because she voted fairly? Would she be a today had she voted against him?

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

The “Special Master” who the moron’s own lawyers suggested, asks which docs are classified so that they can be dealt with first, and they won’t say so?

And why would that be?

A) They’re just trying to drag out the process.

B) They don’t know.

C) If they say so in a legal document and it’s later proven to be untrue, their careers go the way of Jenna, Sydney and Rudy.

D) The documents were never declassified and it’s all a lie.

E) All of the above.

I guess even $3 million isn’t enough to get an attorney to knowingly commit a crime that could end their career unless they’re already insane or an alcoholic.

He has no defense. Probably because his conduct is indefensible.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Because she voted fairly? Would she be a today had she voted against him?

Would you call it "voting fairly" if she had ruled against Trump?

Ultimately, I think it's perfectly fair to point out the fact that 1) Trump nominated her, and 2) she's given Trump and his council more deference than many other legal scholars would have.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

--Judge Cannon is a Trump toady.

Because she voted fairly?

She didn't vote. She ruled. And her ruling was so nonsensical that lawyers on both sides of the political spectrum ridiculed it.

So she's either incredibly incompetent or she's a toady. Or both.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

I personally don’t think she’s a toady so much as dumb as a rock.

She has as much understanding of precedent and the letter of the law as one who would confuse “voting” with “making a ruling” which is very likely to be overturned (yes, even at the conservative 11th circuit) on appeal.

Which is to say “none.”

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The “Special Master” who the moron’s own lawyers suggested, asks which docs are classified so that they can be dealt with first, and they won’t say so? 

And why would that be? 

A) They’re just trying to drag out the process.

The DOJ is in a rush to go over the documents, why rush???

B) They don’t know.

What’s wrong with have a third party review what’s classified and what’s protected under the attorney client privilege act?

C) If they say so in a legal document and it’s later proven to be untrue, their careers go the way of Jenna, Sydney and Rudy.

Or Garland could be in bigger trouble that’s already growing around him, we didn’t even touch Wray yet.

D) The documents were never declassified and it’s all a lie. 

or that they were and the DOJ overstepped their government legal authority and that would be very, very bad.

She didn't vote. She ruled. And her ruling was so nonsensical that lawyers on both sides of the political spectrum ridiculed it.

Not entirely true. Again, had she ruled against Trump, you would put the woman on a pedestal, she fairly and justifiably rules for fairness and to have a third party review the documents, the usual leftist whining diatribes of being a Trump stooge are being hurled once again.

So she's either incredibly incompetent or she's a toady. Or both.

Looking at Garland’s flawing future one could say the exact same thing.

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They’re eventually going to produce a cheeseburger wrapper with “I DECLASSIFY!” written on it in black sharpie!!!

That’s the quality of donald’s legal team and the depth of their argument.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

The DOJ is in a rush to go over the documents, why rush???

You usually complain that they take too long and go nowhere. Must be onto something.

What’s wrong with have a third party review what’s classified and what’s protected under the attorney client privilege act? 

Judge Dearie is facilitating that. It’s even the headline.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

donald’s lawyers won't say whether he declassified documents, showing that one of his leading defenses is imploding. The special master basically said, put up or shut up. And donald’s lawyers chose the latter! His special master ruse is already backfiring.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

The special master basically said, put up or shut up. And donald’s lawyers chose the latter! His special master ruse is already backfiring.

Hmmm…you have no way of knowing this. Calm down with the speculations, it just doesn’t help the left. Let’s see where this goes first.

-12 ( +0 / -12 )

Judge Raymond Dearie - serving as an independent arbiter, or special master, to vet the more than 11,000 seized documents and potentially recommend keeping some away from federal investigators - asked Trump's lawyers why he should not consider records marked classified as genuinely classified. "If the government gives me prima facie evidence (a legal term meaning a fact presumed to be true unless disproved) that this is classified, and you decide not to advance a claim of declassification ... as far as I'm concerned that's the end of it," Dearie told Trump's lawyers in his first public hearing on the matter.

BINGO! Time for Trump to put up or shut up.... If he did declassify, then their should be a clear paper trail of assessments, reviews, and a declassification memo. Things he's never presented....

Trump has said in social media posts that he declassified the records, but his lawyers have skirted the issue in court.

They've done more than skirt it - they've confirmed it - contradicting their client. In Jun a Trump lawyer certified in writing to the FBI that "no more CLASSIFED documents were stored at Mar-A-Lago". He didn't say formerly classified or declassified, Then two weeks ago, Trump's lawyers filed a motion with the court that CLASSIFIED information should be expected to be found in Presidential papers. Notice a trend here? Trump saying one thing in public but his lawyers all saying the opposite under oath when in front of a judge and under threat of contempt if they lie? So who's lying - Trump or his lawyers? That's a pretty easy answer...

The Justice Department on Friday appealed to the Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals the portion of Cannon's ruling allowing the special master to vet the records marked as classified and the judge's restricting FBI access to them. Trump's legal team on Tuesday opposed the government's request and calling the Justice Department's investigation "unprecedented and misguided."

During any potential compromise of classified info you must do an immediate review and assessment, to see what our adversaries may have been exposed to - this is especially critical with HUMIT, as sources and methods are involved that could be identified by a foreign unfriendly government, and those assets eliminated. Lives are at stake here - and Trump and his team want to delay it - unconscionable...

And one wonders what the Russian-speaking Ukrainian national who accessed Mar-A-Lago multiple times in 2022 using a fake ID and false identity might have taken....perhaps something in now empty classified folders?

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/fake-heiress-trump-mar-a-lago-security-breach_n_630ae229e4b088f74234e48b

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The DOJ is in a rush to go over the documents, why rush???

You usually complain that they take too long and go nowhere. Must be onto something.

Bob, this is the Goldie-trump defense gambit usually employed (poorly? By the other one.

Every investigation is either too fast or too slow.

This will be followed up by the “Just wait until Kevin has the gavel. Then you’ll be sorry!” Gambit shortly.

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Hmmm…you have no way of knowing this. Calm down with the speculations, it just doesn’t help the left. Let’s see where this goes first.

There is no speculation. Dearie told them that if they don’t use declassification as their defense it is over.

Called their bluff.

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The only word I have to describe Mr. Trump is " DISASTER ".

Mr. trump has done so much damage to the greatest democracy on earth, it is hard to even comprehend. or start a recovery.

Please read the new released book " The Divider " by Peter Baker and Susan Glasser.

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Next Trump will claim he also pardoned himself, verbally of course.

And in his mind, he'll be telling the truth.

And in millions of morons minds, because he said it, they'll believe it's truth.

Remember, we're dealing with the bottom dredges of humanity's intelligence with the MAGA folk.

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That arrogant goofball didn’t declassify anything! More BS . . . that’s all.

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bass4funk

The special master basically said, put up or shut up. And donald’s lawyers chose the latter! His special master ruse is already backfiring.

Hmmm…you have no way of knowing this. Calm down with the speculations, it just doesn’t help the left. Let’s see where this goes first.

Ah, yes we do. Trump didn't want to say that he declassified the documents, because he is in trouble if it isn't true. He wanted it to be ambiguous, which is not how the law works, so Dearie is calling his bluff and forcing him to answer the question of whether the documents are classified or not.

If he didn't declassify them and he says he did, he is in trouble.

If he says that they are classified, then he can't pretend that he declassified them.

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There is no speculation.

There is, you don't know the outcome of this search.

Dearie told them that if they don’t use declassification as their defense it is over.

Called their bluff.

It's not over, so I guess the bluff was called or you heard something today? Yes?

Ah, yes we do.

Like when Trump was impeached...twice and he was going to prison, I believe it was supposed to be Rykers?

If he didn't declassify them and he says he did, he is in trouble.

If he says that they are classified, then he can't pretend that he declassified them.

We shall see, keep the liberal swords sheathed and stop salivating, calm down.

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

We shall see, keep the liberal swords sheathed and stop salivating, calm down.

Translation: I got nothing. Please stop making me defend the indefensible.

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Translation: I got nothing.

Of I don't, and why would I? Neither of us does, but in Trump's case, it's nowhere clear and cut as the left....sigh (again) wants it to be

Please stop making me defend the indefensible.

You are free to flaw around as much as you need to.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Imagine if Hillary had done anything even remotely close to what Trump did? The most she was guilty of was that some people classified emails AFTER sending them to her. And the right claimed it was the end of American civilization. Those same righties now saying Trump's all good.

These people are morons.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Legally: declassification status is irrelevant. NARA asked then demanded National Defense Documents back. Trump had no right to possess these documents. He knew they were being demanded. He didn’t give them back and in fact attempted to hide them.

That’s the ball game. He’s did it. He’s guilty.

But of course the fact that so many of these documents were so highly classified makes the issue of greater concern. Including at sentencing.

First of all if there were ANY documentation that as a sitting POTUS, Don had declassified these documents, THAT is what they would be leading with. It would be addendum #1 on every single court filing.

But they haven’t provided any documentation because he didn’t do it because as 18 former Trump administration officials have said, no such system for default declassification existed.

The very idea that while waving a KFC leg (in lue of a wand) he could mutter “I hearby” and then everything is magically from that moment declassified and there’s no process or documentation is just laughable.

It’s so brazenly dumb as to cause one to question the connection to reality of those who postulate it.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

bass4funk

If he didn't declassify them and he says he did, he is in trouble.

If he says that they are classified, then he can't pretend that he declassified them.

We shall see, keep the liberal swords sheathed and stop salivating, calm down.

No. We have seen already. Trump's lawyers won't say that they are declassified, so Judge Dearie said that he will assume that they are classified.

And this has nothing to do with liberals or the left. It isn't political. It's about the law and national security.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

it's nowhere clear and cut as the left....sigh (again) wants it to be

Judge Dearie wants it ‘clear and cut’. This article and every other news article about this hearing is quite clear about that.

And Judge Dearie isn’t ‘the left’.

He’a special master in this case. The special master which 45 requested. So your ‘left’ bias angle is a dead end.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Why waste more tax money? Just throw him in prison.

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Heres another thought exercise:

The classified docs has SCI, Human Sourced intelligence, and Nuclear weapons intelligence on a foreign power.

Knowledge of their contents would tell an adversary would tell them what the US knows and what it doesn’t. It would tell them how we get the intelligence and how we cannot.

Basically it lays bear every strength and weakness of US intelligence and provides a roadmap to hiding critical intelligence from discovery.

If, IF he HAD declassified these documents (he didn’t), what would that say about his judgement? What would that say about his intentions? What would that say about his basic commitment to the United States?

So you’re arguing that he’s not a criminal and likely a foreign agent, he’s just an amoral idiot.

Ok. Go with that one.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Hmmm…you have no way of knowing this. Calm down with the speculations, it just doesn’t help the left. Let’s see where this goes first.

Unless you don’t understand English, which is definitely the case here, this is exactly what happened. Might not be good for donald, but then people who love the country shouldn’t care too much about treasonous people like donald!

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It's not over, so I guess the bluff was called or you heard something today? Yes?

There might be a need to up reading and comprehension skills, but that is exactly what happened.

donald is probably screaming at those who agreed to appoint Dearie as special master, this looks to be backfiring big time for him.

I guess if he just started paying his lawyers, he might get better advice.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Like when Trump was impeached...twice and he was going to prison, I believe it was supposed to be Rykers?

ROFL, do you even understand what impeachment means???

We shall see, keep the liberal swords sheathed and stop salivating, calm down.

You should tell that to donald, he’s really freaking out today!!!

>

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Declassification of classified materials (documents or electronic media) has a paper trail. The OCA, Original Classification Authority has to sign off on the declassification after there is a study conducted to determine the effects, if any, from declassifying the materials in question. Absent the necessary documentation there is no declassification. It is cut and dried. A President cannot simply assert a document is declassified. The process has to be adhered to.

A good example is when Mr. Trump attempted to declassify the entire report on the JFK assassination. He alone could not order it done. If you recall there was push back from the intelligence communities and the State Department, apparently there are people alive still that releasing the report could harm. So parts of the report remain classified. Declassification is not accomplished with a wave of the Presidential hand. There are legal requirements to be adhered to and those generate a paper trail. When the material is finally declassified the former classification markings are blocked out and the material is clearly marked Unclassified.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I guess if he just started paying his lawyers, he might get better advice.

Up front in cash - not in race horses.

It’s called the “Rudy axiom.”

Get paid in cash up front. Otherwise Cheeto-Jesus will welsh on you like all his other contractors.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Legally: declassification status is irrelevant. NARA asked then demanded National Defense Documents back. Trump had no right to possess these documents. He knew they were being demanded. He didn’t give them back and in fact attempted to hide them.

That is indeed true. Even if the documents in question were declassified, which is highly doubtful for reasons described in my post above, they remain the property of the National Archives and by extension the property of the American public. Official documents are never the property of a former President. The National Records Act is very clear on this subject and everyone in Federal service has to take annual training on handling official records, training that is recorded for posterity. There is no excuse for violating these laws.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Obviously, Trump's juvenile mind is catching up. He can fool is insane cult base forever, but attempting to bluff even the staunchest conservatives can slowly give realization they can't back lies, law breaking actions...really incredibly bad one's like stating he declassified classified documents any dummy would know goes against the democracy of the USA...and detrimental action to his country.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

That’s the ball game. He’s did it. He’s guilty. 

You’re a lawyer now? Hmmm…

But of course the fact that so many of these documents were so highly classified makes the issue of greater concern. Including at sentencing. 

Greater concern? How? Interesting, the DOJ knew of the inventory of documents the man had, knew was was highly classified and sensitive material, tells Trump to buy a lock and secure the documents properly and then a few months later raid the place semi-illegally with over-broad powers taking documents and whatever they can find…odd that have nothing to do with anything among some of the other items, goes through his wife and his kids room, and all shortly before a midterm. Yeah, ok…

First of all if there were ANY documentation that as a sitting POTUS, Don had declassified these documents, THAT is what they would be leading with. It would be addendum #1 on every single court filing. 

Again, you don’t know for sure or have any idea as to how the ruling will fall. Stop the salivating.

It’s so brazenly dumb as to cause one to question the connection to reality of those who postulate it.

Hmmm, some might think the opposite.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

Hmmm, some might think the opposite.

Translation: once again, I got nothing so I will attempt to appear "wisely dubious" when in fact I am just dubious.

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Translation: once again, I got nothing so I will attempt to appear "wisely dubious" when in fact I am just dubious.

I think it’s the opposite, more praying or wishful thinking on the lefts part in their bloodlust quest in trying to get this man.

ROFL, do you even understand what impeachment means???

Yes, of course, he was acquitted twice.

You should tell that to donald, he’s really freaking out today!!!

Didn’t look like it in the interview, no reason to as Hurley and Dershowitz (two Hillary supporting lawyers and the best legal minds in the country) were saying.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

Yes, of course, he was acquitted twice.

You forgot he was impeached twice.

Didn’t look like it in the interview, no reason to as Hurley and Dershowitz (two Hillary supporting lawyers and the best legal minds in the country) were saying.

Totally looked like that, the fear on his face was clear and very very enjoyable!!!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Why waste more tax money? Just throw him in prison.

Because dems are adept at squandering money without much to show for it. Hence, we’re still waiting for them to slap the cuffs on him. It seems the wait will be indefinite.

The current guy didn’t sell national secrets for personal gain, nor did he try to overthrow democracy.

neither did the former guy. Or else he’d be in jail for treason already. This is just more political theater.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

If they eventually go down the route of he declassified everything, I can’t wait for the word salad as to why a foreign country’s nuclear capabilities were declassified.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The Justice Department is conducting a criminal investigation of Trump for retaining government records, some marked as highly classified including top secret, at Mar-a-Lago after leaving office in January 2021. Trump has denied wrongdoing and has said without providing evidence that the investigation is a partisan attack.

Let’s not forget that 100s of documents are still missing. There are American agents in danger every day because donald was selling their details to hostile countries!!!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

The govt has paperwork for everything, including declassification of formerly classified documents. Have the govt produce that paperwork or they are still classified, since nobody else knew it.

There's a saying in govt and big business, "if it isn't written down, then it didn't happen."

There's a saying on most street corners too, "put up or shut up."

4 ( +4 / -0 )

If Trump had declassified the documents why did he hide them between pages of magazines?

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You forgot he was impeached twice.

You focus on the impeachment part, I will focus on the acquittal (twice)

Totally looked like that,

Naw, the only time I saw the guy when he looked like had fear in his eyes was when he thought something happened to his son when he was sick a couple of years back.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

Trump's motto a buck gained, is a buck easily made. Campaign donations. Court case donations. Save America donations, even at the funeral of his first wife. University. Intended to sell the documents. The Truth is out there.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

You focus on the impeachment part, I will focus on the acquittal (twice)

He was impeached twice, whether you focus or not will not change it.

Naw, the only time I saw the guy when he looked like had fear in his eyes was when he thought something happened to his son when he was sick a couple of years back.

Are you now claiming you are with him 24/7????

And he is scared a lot these days, ask anyone around him.

The fear of going to prison does that to people!!!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

How am I supporting the current administration?

Were you ever critical of it?

Some of Trump's donation collections are illegal.

The majority of Americans at this point and time do not care about any of that, and not while the inflation number rises and food prices are out of control and let's not forget the crime is beyond out of control and with less law enforcement on the force and the record numbers that are retiring or quitting, I would say that is more on the nation's mind as a whole.

Trump’s penchant for turning his political and legal troubles into fundraising schemes has long been recognized, but the former US president’s money hustling tricks seem to have expanded since his defeat by Joe Biden, prompting new scrutiny and criticism from campaign finance watchdogs and legal analysts.

If that is what you think, then fine.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

bass4funk

The majority of Americans at this point and time do not care about any of that, and not while the inflation number rises and food prices are out of control and let's not forget the crime is beyond out of control and with less law enforcement on the force and the record numbers that are retiring or quitting, I would say that is more on the nation's mind as a whole.

None of which has anything to do with Biden.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

 the DOJ knew of the inventory of documents the man had

That isn't true. Neither the DoJ nor the National Archives knew, or even knows today, what documents Mr. Trump had or may still have at Mar A Lago. It remains unknown was was in the now empty folders with classification markings on them.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Why were so many empty classified folders discovered at Mar-a-Lago?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

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