When the DOJ sent the FBI into Donald Trump’s home to take classified documents that Trump had stolen, it was a safe bet that the DOJ had all its ducks in a row. Merrick Garland’s DOJ has consistently shown itself to be overwhelmingly prepared in these situations, even if it doesn’t move as quickly as some observers would like.
Sure enough, the unsealed search warrant, and the details that have surfaced in the media, are making it very clear that the Feds have Trump absolutely nailed. In fact, the DOJ has obtained surveillance footage showing that after it contacted Trump about the boxes of classified documents, someone at Mar-a-Lago began moving the boxes in and out of the storage room, per the New York Times.
Trump’s team is already trying to spin this in innocent fashion. But let’s be real here. If Trump were having his people pull the boxes out of storage so they could be returned, they would have been returned. But we know that many of the boxes were not returned, even as Trump claimed that he had returned all of the boxes, prompting the search warrant. So why were these boxes being moved around? Were Trump and his people assessing the value of the classified documents, and deciding which ones to illegally keep?
In any case, this will go a very long way to proving the DOJ’s obstruction of justice case. When the Feds demand that you turn over evidence, and you respond by moving that evidence around and then falsely claiming you don’t have it, and there’s video footage proving that you moved the boxes around, you’re in deep legal trouble.
This also raises questions about who was moving the boxes around. We can’t imagine Donald Trump – elderly and in poor physical condition – was slinging dozens of boxes of documents around on his own. Whoever helped him move the boxes is a material witness if they didn’t know what was in the boxes, and a criminal co-conspirator if they did know what was in the boxes. And at least some of those people are on camera having moved those boxes. This just keeps getting uglier for Trump and his people.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report