A judge’s explosive ruling handed the FBI this devastating defeat to Donald Trump
Donald Trump is challenging the FBI in court.
There is a clear victory in the first battle.
And a judge’s explosive ruling handed the FBI this devastating defeat to Donald Trump.
Judge Aileen Cannon granted Donald Trump’s request to appoint a Special Master to sort through the documents the FBI seized in the Mar-a-Lago raid to determine which ones are covered by executive privilege.
Former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy explained that this ruling could potentially be explosive, as the courts have not settled the argument that a former President has the right to assert executive privilege.
“It’s a big win for the Trump team and a potentially explosive ruling if it holds. I would imagine it’s important enough that the government will appeal this immediately. In a nutshell, what happened here is the Justice Department assumed that Trump only had attorney-client privilege, that he did not have executive privilege, or at least to the limited extent that as a former President he maintains executive privilege, it can’t be asserted against the executive branch itself. It’s one thing for the government to have that theory, I think it actually may be a sound theory. The problem is it’s not 100% settled, so I thought it was incumbent on them to get a ruling from the court on that question before they hauled off and did what they did, which was have the privilege team go through all the seized documents assuming that Trump only had attorney-client privilege and then allowing all of the potentially executive privileged documents to go to the prosecution team,” McCarthy began.
McCarthy added that if the courts rule Trump has the right to protect documents via executive privilege, then it could destroy the entire criminal investigation into Trump.
“If it turns out they are privileged, that could taint the prosecutors who reviewed them and it could also taint their investigation because they are now conducting an investigation. They got these documents two weeks ago, and they have had these documents, the prosecution team has, for about a week. So they have been merrily conducting their investigation with the agents assuming all the documents were appropriate for the investigation. Now the judge is saying hold everything, he may have executive privilege,” McCarthy concluded.
This entire investigation and FBI raid struck many as fishy from the start.
In her ruling, Judge Cannon acknowledged that the circumstances surrounding the Biden administration using the FBI to raid the property of his top rival is highly political in nature.
And if this ruling holds up on appeal, it would complicate Joe Biden’s scheme to use the court’s to block Trump from running in 2024.