“I was very busy, as you’ve sort of seen,” he explained.
The comments from Trump are an admission that he did not move to satisfy the federal government’s demands that he comply with their requests to hand over the documents. It is also the fullest he has addressed the matter since being indicted for his mishandling of those documents, which allegedly included classified material.
Upon leaving office, Trump took down troves of files and documents from his time as president. NARA eventually requested a full accounting of what had been taken to Mar-a-Lago. And when it was eventually discovered that some of the boxes Trump had taken included classified documents, the agency requested that the Justice Department look into the matter. The FBI eventually opened a criminal investigation, and the DOJ ultimately issued a subpoena for the records.
According to the special counsel’s indictment, Trump is alleged to have moved the materials around Mar-a-Lago in order to hide the full extent of the boxes he kept from both the feds and even his own lawyers. Pressed by Baier, Trump did not deny that he told his lawyers to say he fully complied with the subpoena when he hadn’t. Instead, he said once more that he needed time to sort through the boxes to take out personal items like “golf shirts, clothing, pants, shoes.”
The special counsel also says Trump openly discussed on two occasions the fact that some of the materials remained classified even as he held on to them. In his Fox News interview, Trump denied that, insisting that “everything was declassified.” He said he did not “know” if the materials he took contained military plans for a prospective strike on Iran, though he is reportedly on tape acknowledging that he kept a classified Pentagon document detailing as much.
Published: 2023-06-20 03:00:38