On Thursday the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed an order issued by U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon to appoint a special master to oversee the review of classified documents seized from Donald Trump’s Mar-a-lago resort.
According to The Bulwark's Kimberly Wehle, the most remarkable aspect of the ruling is how the panel of three judges "utterly demolished Trump" and the U.S. District judge who issued the appointment, Aileen Cannon, "in unforgiving language inspired by foundational principles of constitutional restraint."
Wehle writes that the "vivid picture is not good for Trump" since the decision effectively lets Special Counsel Jack Smith "loose on all 22,000 documents so the government can pursue the story to its logical conclusion, which could include in an indictment," adding that Trump did not claim "any disregard for his constitutional rights in this scenario, let alone a callous one" -- a detail that should have signaled the end of the case but one that Cannon "glossed over."
On the factor that requires showing that Trump had an “individual interest in and need for the material whose return he seeks, the court said it was undeterred by this lack of information.”
“All these arguments are a sideshow,” the panel concluded. “The law is clear. We cannot write a rule that allows any subject of a search warrant to block government investigations after the execution of the warrant. Nor can we write a rule that allows only former presidents to do so.”
Read more at The Bulwark.