Former Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill said Monday that after a new court filing from Donald Trump's lawyers over classified documents she's "embarrassed for them."
One of the ongoing problems with Judge Aileen Cannon's injunction with the classified documents is that the FBI and intelligence community can't do an assessment on the impact of having the documents out in the public.
At the same time, the so-called "Gang of Eight," the leading officials with top security clearance, is seeking a briefing by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence on the impact of the documents. That can't be done until the documents can be examined by the government, which Judge Cannon has blocked. It has earned her considerable criticism for putting Trump over national security.
Trump's team said that national security can take a backseat and wait on the appointment of the special master, ensuring the special master has the proper clearance level and then the 90 days that the special master has to do the review. Judge Cannon will make the decision based on that filing this week.
Speaking on a panel with MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace, McCaskill cited some of the claims made by Trump's legal team that don't fully address the complaints by filing. There was no real argument as to why national security shouldn't matter, merely that it should be an issue after Trump's case is handled.
"Typically, if you file a pleading with the court you put your best foot forward," McCaskill explained. "This pleading plays fast and loose with the facts and the law. Here's what it didn't say. It didn't say why Trump took them as has been pointed out. It didn't say that he declassified them. It did say, and this is a joke I mean, this is a just a cold-stone joke, that somehow national defense documents were personal to him. I mean, for the lawyers to assert that, I'm embarrassed for them."
Wallace cited Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA), who is among the officials seeking for information about the impact of the documents on national security.
"It seems that, as a legal matter, in this is where DOJ has aggressively argued that a special master completely jeopardizes the ability to do just this, to continue with this intel community review of compromised sources, compromised methods, compromised programs," Wallace said. "We saw in the subpoena all of the different classifications that were on the materials. Hoarded, taken, and then lied about returning at Mar-a-Lago."
McCaskill said that the priority should be to preserve the documents at the DOJ "for possible prosecution as long as the defense security and intelligence community has a chance to adequately review these documents,"
She went on to enforce the need for oversight but noted that it might not happen immediately.
"I get why they want it immediately, but there are a lot of people in the intelligence community that, frankly, have not shown their ability to stand up to Donald Trump and his nonsense," McCaskill went on. "And the other weird thing about this, and this was talked about by another member of the panel, you know, the court seems to be dancing with executive privilege and not understanding that you can't say, 'well, there is executive privilege maybe here that would allow Trump to hold on to these documents. But by the way, in another of the executive branch, you can look at them.' It's either executive or it isn't. It either belongs to the government or it doesn't. And her trying to bend this thing like a pretzel in order to placate Trump and his supporters frankly makes her look silly."
'I’m embarrassed for them': Former senator aghast by humiliating filing from Trump lawyers youtu.be