Former Trump officials say his claim of 'standing order' to declassify documents is bogus: report
Dopnald Trump speaks at rally -- (Photo by Nicholas Kamm for AFP)

In the wake of the FBI's raid on Mar-a-Lago in search of classified documents allegedly taken from the White House by Donald Trump at the end of his term, the former president and his allies have claimed he had a "standing order" to declassify documents he took. But according to 18 former top Trump administration officials speaking to CNN, the claim is false.

"Nothing approaching an order that foolish was ever given," said John Kelly, who served as Trump's chief of staff. "And I can't imagine anyone that worked at the White House after me that would have simply shrugged their shoulders and allowed that order to go forward without dying in the ditch trying to stop it."

Mick Mulvaney, who succeeded Kelly as acting White House chief of staff, told CNN he was "not aware of a general standing order."

According to CNN, one official after another rejected the claim of a standing order.

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"Total nonsense," one senior White House official said. "If that's true, where is the order with his signature on it? If that were the case, there would have been tremendous pushback from the Intel Community and DoD, which would almost certainly have become known to Intel and Armed Services Committees on the Hill."

"Trump and his allies have made a wide range of claims about declassification in the days after the FBI's August 8 search of Mar-a-Lago, which resulted in federal agents seizing 11 sets of classified documents -- including some marked with the highest levels of classification," CNN's report stated. "On his social media platform Truth Social last week, Trump made the sweeping claim that the documents in the boxes seized by the FBI at his home were 'all declassified.'"