Feds Search Mar-a-Lago

This is news I wasn't expecting. The feds got a warrant to search Mar-a-Lago. Donald Trump must be seething.

The search for evidence related to Trump's handling of classified information -- whether he improperly removed classified documents to Mar a Lago. It was not about January 6.

Trump lawyer Christina Bobb, who was present during the FBI search, confirmed federal agents “seized paper.”

Trump was at Trump Tower in New York when news broke of the raid.

Trump and the Republicans are sure to use this search as a rallying cry against the F.B.I. and Democrats in their bid to win the November mid-term elections.

But didn't Trump once want Hillary indicted for allegedly mishandling classified information?

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    I don't remember Tr*mp saying (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Peter G on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 09:56:22 AM EST
    he wanted Hillary indicted. Just "lock her up." Never suggested, I don't think, that proper legal procedures should be followed first. Just that his adversaries should be declared "guilty" (of who knows what) in the court of public opinion, apparently, and then thrown in jail directly (by whom, I have no idea), with no further ado.

    But seriously ... a few thoughts on the s/w (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Peter G on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 10:11:03 AM EST
    I assume if it was executed like most search warrants, we would have heard about that, i.e., at 6 a.m. with a large team of armed agents who force everyone present to the ground and threaten them with guns until the agents decide that they are safe from violent resistance, even when there was no reason to fear resistance in the first place. I infer that that did not happen, so already he is getting special treatment. Second, when the FBI is investigating a nonviolent crime, it typically does not use a search warrant. Rather, they utilize a grand jury subpoena or administrative summons. (Either of those would direct the person thought to be in possession of the documents to find and deliver them, rather than have them forcibly seized.)  Unless one of three things is true, that is: (1) cooperation by the suspect has been promised but has not been forthcoming (either by stalling or by outright obstruction); or (2) there is a specific reason to believe that a request to produce the documents "voluntarily" would result in destruction or hiding of dox rather than delivery; or (3) they are trying to intimidate or bully the subject into "cooperating" against some bigger fish, where the subject has so far refused. Jeralyn, do you agree with this?

    Exactly!!! (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 11:13:18 AM EST
    If it was any of us who had stolen classified documents, the drywall inside our houses would be missing too.

    Trump is getting preferential treatment.


    Number 1 (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Towanda on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 01:35:09 PM EST
    I read that an earlier visit yielded some stolen documents and cooperation was promised to turn over more, but that has not occurred.

    The national archives took (none / 0) (#14)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 05:21:48 PM EST
    a lot of boxes in January during a consensual visit to Maralago.

    I think it has just taken the N.A. this long to review what was in the documents taken in January to determine whether anything was improperly taken or destroyed.

    National Archives and Records Administration said it had received from Mar-a-Lago 15 boxes of White House records, including documents containing classified information, earlier this year. The National Archives said Trump should have turned over that material upon leaving office, and it asked the Justice Department to investigate.

    ....His son Eric said on Fox News on Monday night that he had spent the day with his father and that the search happened because "the National Archives wanted to corroborate whether or not Donald Trump had any documents in his possession."

    Eric said the boxes were from the Inauguration Day when Trump had to move out of the White House in 6 hours.

    As if they have enough notice and ability to hire staff to leave before then and do a thorough check of what they were taking?


    should be (none / 0) (#15)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 05:22:47 PM EST
    "as if they didn't have enough notice"

    Eric Trump, a usually unreliable source. (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 08:02:09 PM EST
    Possibly significant footnote (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 01:23:51 PM EST

    Judges Say House Panel Can Have Trump's Tax Returns
    August 9, 2022 at 12:20 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard 197 Comments

    "The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that the House Ways and Means Committee can obtain former President Trump's tax returns from the Internal Revenue Service," Axios reports.

    "Trump has been fighting the release of his tax returns to the committee for more than three years."


    Historians on Twitter explain it (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Towanda on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 01:42:32 PM EST
    as we who use archives know well:

    "Don't f@ck with archivists."

    Seriously. Don't. I served on a board of a state historical society that incurred theft of documents and artifacts. The archivists turned detectives, tracked down the items on the market, and pushed us for prosecution with an unholy zeal for revenge (and prevention).

    This took years. So does archival work. They are good at this.

    It's been fun seeing the comments (none / 0) (#3)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 10:13:19 AM EST
    of the MAGA peanut gallery - including my likely future governor - concerning FBI investigations compared when it was Hillary and when it is the Orange Jesus.

    To bad we live in a post hypocrisy world.

    If only hypocrisy killed (none / 0) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 01:13:04 PM EST

    GOP Suddenly Flip-Flops on Handling Classified Info
    August 9, 2022 at 2:00 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard 23 Comments

    Steve Benen: "If there was one thing Republicans cared about six years ago, it was how high-ranking officials dealt with classified materials. In fact, as recently as 2016, the GOP was certain -- that is, the party at least pretended to be certain -- that politicians disqualify themselves from positions of authority when they put documents at risk."

    "And so, now that Republicans have learned that Donald Trump allegedly took highly sensitive classified materials to his golf resort, one could imagine the party expressing outrage with the former president. After all, given the GOP's recent history of passionate feelings on the subject, it stands to reason that Trump may have crossed an intolerable line."

    "But that would assume that the Republican Party's principles and standards are consistent. They are not."

    And, what about (none / 0) (#12)
    by KeysDan on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 02:00:58 PM EST
    that media inconsistency.  Sure Biden racked up an impressive list of legislative and other achievements, but some say it will result in inflation.  And, he is old.

    Trump's lair was searched by FBI agents in keeping with a legal warrant signed by a federal judge or magistrate centering on documents taken by Trump.   This is awful and will result in his surefire election in 2024.  

    And, what if the DOJ comes up empty handed, it will turn out in Trump's favor and the Democrats will e doomed.  Yes, just like when the head of the FBI firstly, reported that there was no there there in Hillary's emails  and then coupled that with his gratuitous lecture on her handling of documents.  

    And, then just before the election publicly announced a re-opening of the investigation. Only, to say never mind a week later.  And,that unconscionable action is why Hillary won the presidency.  Did I get that part right?


    One thing we (none / 0) (#5)
    by KeysDan on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 12:48:20 PM EST
    can be pretty sure of is that the documents, or whatever, were not taken by Trump as mementos or for sentimental reasons.  Trump is transactional.  Something of cash value or coercive potential.

    Something important to hold onto, not something incriminating that he would destroy by flushing down the toilet or burning in the fireplace.  But, then, criminals often keep incriminating evidence as we have seen in J6 hearings and the Alex Jones trial.  And, anything in plain sight would be fair game in the legal search,such as Epstein communications.

    Trump's fascists are out early and loud, from LaraTrump, wife of Eric and "the future of the Republican Pary", according to Lindseybelle, to Pence, who seems to have forgotten about that little difference of opinion he had with Trump and that noose thing.

    The reaction is very predictable (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 12:58:53 PM EST
    it makes me think this is not really about (or just about) what might be considered one of Trump's lesser crimes.  Mishandling documents.
    I agree with the idea that for Garland to do this, right now 90 days before an election, there is something pretty explosive they expected to find.

    The mind boggles with the possibilities but I wonder if, transactionally as you say, he has stuff he planned to sell to foreign governments.

    There has been a lot said and written about how top secret some of the stuff involved is.  So top secret it can't even be described or characterized openly.


    This (none / 0) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 01:21:29 PM EST

    FBI Raid Wasn't Just About Classified Documents
    August 9, 2022 at 11:00 am EDT By Taegan Goddard 362 Comments

    Andrew McCarthy: "There's a game prosecutors play. Let's say I suspect X committed an armed robbery, but I know X is dealing drugs. So, I write a search-warrant application laying out my overwhelming probable cause that X has been selling small amounts of cocaine from his apartment. I don't say a word in the warrant about the robbery, but I don't have to. If the court grants me the warrant for the comparatively minor crime of cocaine distribution, the agents are then authorized to search the whole apartment."

    "If they find robbery tools, a mask, and a gun, the law allows them to seize those items. As long as agents are conducting a legitimate search, they are authorized to seize any obviously incriminating evidence they come across. Even though the warrant was ostensibly about drug offenses, the prosecutors can use the evidence seized to charge robbery."

    "I believe that principle is key to understanding the FBI's search of former president Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida on Monday. The ostensible justification for the search of Trump's compound is his potentially unlawful retention of government records and mishandling of classified information. The real reason is the Capitol riot."

    The National Law Journal has an article (none / 0) (#13)
    by Peter G on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 04:23:24 PM EST
    this afternoon giving good reason to believe that the warrant was issued by a particular US Magistrate Judge who sits in Palm Beach. My wife and I have known that judge for 35+ years, since he was a young lawyer in Philadelphia. No way would he have issued such a warrant without the most scrupulous care that it really demonstrated probable cause to believe (as required by the Fourth Amendment) that materials subject to seizure (such as evidence of a crime) would be found in that place at this time. He is a total straight arrow. He would not issue a warrant on any pretextual basis, nor if he thought it was being sought on a pretextual basis. It is true, however, that if in the course of executing a properly-issued warrant according to its terms the officers happen upon evidence of another crime in plain view (that is, in a place they are entitled to look while executing the warrant as written), then that other evidence can also properly be seized.

    I agree with (none / 0) (#16)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Aug 09, 2022 at 07:29:40 PM EST
    you. I also think Trump being the mobster had blackmail material and/or classified information that would be valuable to the likes of Putin which Trump could sell for a quite a bit of money.