The FBI’s warrant to raid Trump’s house was revealed Friday.
In another cynical move, the media requested the former president disclose the warrant for 2 days, claiming that failing to do so would indicate his guilt. Trump gave it to Breitbart to publish, prompting lamenting and anguish because it wasn’t redacted. Apparently, it was Trump’s role to do that for the government, the same government that could have just posted it.
Everything in the warrant was absurd because it was all fixated on getting Trump. There are no regulations the FBI won’t bend or break to achieve its goals. The issue with the government’s warrant interpretation is rather simple: It’s far too broad.
Andrew McCarthy wrote a good post on this topic. To smartly summarize what he said, where things get very, stretchy is subsection (c). It allows seizing “any government and/or Presidential Records made” during Trump’s term.
This isn’t categorized. It aims to employ the criminal law – the intrusive search warrant — to execute the Presidential Records Law, which isn’t a criminal statute.
1/2 This part of Att. B of warrant against Trump looks like the kind of GENERAL WARRANT the Framers abhorred and sought to ban in the Fourth Amendment:— Jeff Clark (@JeffClarkUS) August 12, 2022
"c. Any government and/or Presidential Records created between January 20, 2017 and January 20, 2021."https://t.co/i5bTlOkjv0
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Can the DOJ do this? Maybe. Section 2071 targets anybody who “removes” or “destroys” a government record. You may be wondering why this didn’t apply to Hillary Clinton’s erasure and destruction of tens of thousands of govt emails. Rule 41 of the Federal Regulations of Criminal Procedure allows the seizure of “illegally possessed things” It’s evident from the context that this statement refers to illegal proceeds. It’s broader than that, though.
Since Congress didn’t criminalize Presidential Records Act infractions, the Justice Department is creating one for Trump. This is not Attorney General Merrick Garland’s even-handed, nonpartisan law enforcement, as he said Thursday.
The insinuation is clear. The authorities misinterpreted the Presidential Records Act as a criminal statute to raid Trump’s house. That implies the warrant authorized for the collection of anything relevant to Trump’s presidency and the range of what was seized extended far beyond protecting confidential information the former president may declassify.
What did they want? Given the DOJ’s evident collaboration with the January 6th committee, isn’t it natural to believe the FBI had additional motives?
Indeed that’s it. AG Merrick Garland shamelessly coordinates raids and seizures with the January 6th committee. Jeff Clark’s home was raided, and GOP lawmakers’ phones were taken. Liz Cheney and co. say leap; DOJ asks how high.
It is absurd that the administration waited 18 months to retrieve Trump’s sensitive docs. The flailing January 6th committee seems to have uncovered nothing and is now utilizing the DOJ to find “proof” of a coup.
How far will the DOJ go? They’re now attacking Trump under the same law Hillary Clinton used. Are they bold enough to charge the past president with a crime the FBI says no sane prosecutor would pursue? Was this a cynical political attack to boost the January 6th committee? Or both?
The longer the DOJ doesn’t pursue charges, the more it looks like they misused the criminal justice system to dig out information on Joe Biden’s possible 2024 opponent. No matter which Republican wins the White House next, these agencies must be modified.