Home News Florida Judge Rules On Request To Dismiss Trump’s Classified Docs Probe

Florida Judge Rules On Request To Dismiss Trump’s Classified Docs Probe

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Image via Gage Skidmore Flickr

On Thursday, Florida District Court Judge Aileen Cannon rejected former President Donald Trump’s motion to dismiss charges of retaining classified documents.

This is only one of two motions from Trump’s legal team. The judge has not ruled on the other motion to dismiss based on the Presidential Records Act (PRA). 

Trump’s attorney Todd Blanche initially asserted that the PRA gives the president the authority to retain documents he sees fit. However, later the judge one point remarked that the Trump defense team’s view of the Presidential Records Act would essentially “gut the PRA.”

Fox News continues:

“Presidents since George Washington have taken material out of the White House,” said Blanche, adding that the PRA was passed in the late ’70s and nothing in the statute says anything about documents with markings or anything that gives the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) the ability to challenge a president’s decision about which documents are personal versus presidential.

Trump’s attorney also pointed out often that the then-president caused these boxes to be moved while he was still president and that this is the first time NARA has challenged a decision made by a president about which documents are personal versus presidential. They claim NARA only took this action because the president in question was Donald Trump.

Blanche replied that it is up to Congress to change the law. “That’s what’s supposed to happen. DOJ can’t just decide… [what is personal versus presidential],” he said. 

“We don’t have a lot of case law on this because this has never been done before,” added Blanche. “While he was the president he took records, like many presidents… For the first time ever, NARA took a different path and made a criminal referral,” instead of negotiating with the president as had been done in the past.

Cannon at one point said, “Correct… the seizure of a president’s records was seen to be an extraordinary act.”

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