According to former U.S. Attorney Michael Moore, the battle over documents taken by Donald Trump to his Mar-a-Lago report that DOJ is blocked from reviewing is only just beginning as it appears a special master pick by Trump's lawyers has been approved by the DOJ.
Speaking with host Kate Bolduan, Moore said a whole host of questions about what Trump-nominated Judge Aileen Cannon will allow will still need to be litigated as the former president's attorneys tried to limit the scope of the investigation.
Noting that Judge Raymond J. Dearie, formerly of the Federal District Court in Brooklyn -- who was one of the Trump attorney's two picks -- seems to be in line for the job, Bolduan asked, "He's a Reagan nominee, served in New York since the '80s and retired in 2011. If they've come to an agreement on a special master, does that now mean this process just moves forward with lightning speed? I mean, is this a done deal?"
"It is not a done deal yet," Moore cautioned. "I think it was a smart move and I almost think they were a little bit backed into the corner in needing to agree on the judge. He's had FISA court experience and you can't claim that he should not be authorized to look at these classified documents. So he's a logical choice and at least some common ground was reached."
"Now we're going to have a debate over what the review over what the duties shall be, whether it is executive privilege or attorney/client privilege," he continued. "So the scope of the special master duties will be at play. I think it takes some pressure off the judge in the sense that we have somebody they can say, this is going to be the special master that will look at this and look at this and the parties will narrow it down and clean up my prior order as it related to the injunction and things that have been an issue and sort of a burr under the saddle for the department."
"The real issue, I think for the department has been the claim for the special master was almost completely legitimized once there was this leak, this media leak about what the documents contained. And as soon as we started hearing nuclear secrets and this, somebody is talking about that, and it is either coming from somebody in the FBI, or somebody in the government that has access and has looked at the documents," he explained. "That is why special master is important. Because it is almost another veil of protection around a leak of information. And so I think it gives the judge a chance to clean up of the order and it is a smart move."
"But at the same time the battle may be beginning as to the duties that the special master if in fact the judge is chosen by the court, it will be a debate over what documents should he consider, what documents should he not consider and sort of the timing when that information is made available so the security assessment can move forward."
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