Former prosecutor Preet Bharara schooled a right-winger working for a fringe conservative group that launches FOIA lawsuits against Democrats. It is a talking point that is parrotted by Donald Trump, who had a rambling rant on his social media site claiming that the search warrant executed at Mar-a-Lago to recover stolen government documents was politically motivated.
The legal expert, who even tried to help Trump during the transition and immediately after he was elected, explained in a list why nothing in the Trump documents scandal has to do with the election.
The first thing, he explained, is that while Trump keeps calling it a "raid," it was the execution of a search warrant. A raid is generally when police are trying to shut down illegal activity.
He also noted that it wasn't President Joe Biden that did it. One of the things Biden pledged in his administration is to have a "hands off" approach to the Justice Department. It has been a complaint progressives have had for the past two years.
Bharara also tweeted that Trump isn't on the ballot in 2022. He also isn't on the ballot for 2024 yet, despite statements that he might be. The process of trying to get the documents back began in May 2021. It was only because of Trump's delays that it has dragged on for the past 15 months. A subpoena was issued in the spring of 2022 after the boxes the Archives took in Jan. 2022 didn't contain all of the documents.
Once the search warrant was finally issued, it was more than 90 days before the midterm elections in November.
The search was authorized by a federal judge, and classified documents were found. Trump has even admitted to the claim, by alleging that he waged a declassification wand over the documents to declassify them. It doesn't work that way, however.
"Trump had no right to docs as an ex-president," Bharara continued. Ironically, he also pointed out, that Trump increased penalties for such crimes while he was in office.
The NARA was very polite about the whole ordeal for a year before finally referring it to the DOJ. Over and over, documents weren't returned, he explained. Even after the subpoena, documents still weren't returned. The FBI went to Mar-a-Lago, where the Secret Service let them in and showed them where the documents were. Still, the documents weren't returned.
He closed by saying that a Trump lawyer even went so far as to sign a declaration that all of the documents were returned, which turned out to be a lie.
See the full thread below:
\u201c10. The archives asked for the docs back, nicely. Docs were not returned \n12. A subpoena was issued. Docs were not returned\n13. FBI visited the premises. Docs were not returned\n14. A Trump lawyer signed a declaration that all the docs were returned. That was a lie. Not returned\u201d— Preet Bharara (@Preet Bharara) 1661739872