For months there has been the question of whether Donald Trump has returned all the documents he took from the White House toMar-a-Lago. And now the Justice Department is telling Trump's legal team that it believes he hasn't returned them all.
According to The Washington Post's Aaron Blake, "myriad evidence"led the Justice Department to conclude that Trump may be hiding more such evidence since the FBI search of his resort.
"The first thing to note is that Trump has clearly resisted turning over all the documents. The back and forth with the National Archives dates back to spring of last year, and Trump spent the next several months resisting its demands," Blake writes. "Trump then turned over 15 boxes in January, and he handed over another set in June after a subpoena. The August search of Mar-a-Lago allowed agents to review the documents Trump had, but only in parts of the property the search warrant allowed them to venture."
Blake adds that there's also "plenty of evidence" that Trump is lying about having turned all the materials over.
Blake cites numerous examples: a June sworn statement signed by Trump lawyer Christina Bobb when Trump’s legal team handed over some documents. It said that a “diligent search was conducted” and that “any and all responsive documents accompany this certification"; Trump early 2022 this year asked his lawyer Alex Cannon to tell the National Archives that all materials sought by the agency had been returned, but Cannon refused; former Trump deputy White House counsel Pat Philbin said that former Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows had told him none of the material Trump took was sensitive or classified, and that Trump only had 12 boxes of news clippings.
"Philbin’s language — i.e., citing Meadows — and Cannon’s refusal both point to the prospect that Trump’s own lawyers don’t fully trust the people they are dealing with," writes Blake.
Read the full analysis over at The Washington Post.