A coalition of 11 Republican attorneys general has filed a lawsuit in support of former President Donald Trump’s efforts to have a court-appointed arbitrator search hundreds of classified documents seized at his Mar-a-law last month. Lago complex.
The group, led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), denounced the Biden administration for what it called an “unprecedented nine-hour” search, and accused the Justice Department of “game art and other questionable behavior.” . The agency carried out a search of Trump’s Florida residence last month and seized classified documents that allegedly hold some of the country’s greatest secrets, including information about the nuclear capabilities of foreign powers. The ex-president took the documents with him when he left the White House.
Such efforts, the Republican states say, cloud the Biden administration’s “claims of good faith, neutrality and objectivity.”
“In light of the extraordinary circumstance of a presidential administration ransacking the home of its former – and possibly future – political rival, President Trump has filed a motion to appoint a special master,” the court friend briefly reads. . “During this process, the Biden administration has sought to trade the reputation of the Justice Department and intelligence to thwart the appointment of a neutral special captain. But the court has rejected that gamble twice, and this court should do the same.”
The letter, filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, was signed by the Attorneys General of Texas, Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Louisiana, South Carolina, Utah and West Virginia.
Politico’s Kyle Cheney took note of every state, but Kentucky signed Texas’s bid to overturn the 2020 Supreme Court election. (That case was eventually thrown out.)
Trump is embroiled in a legal battle over the highly sensitive documents seized from his Mar-a-Lago residence more than 18 months after he left the White House. The DOJ is investigating whether the former president or his aides engaged in impropriety or intentionally withheld documents from government investigators.
Trump, who labeled the search a political attack, filed suit to have a court appoint an outside arbitrator known as a special master to examine the material for documents protected by an attorney-client or executive. privilege – even though he is no longer a member of the executive branch.
In a ruling earlier this month that shocked legal experts, a federal judge he appointed in 2020 approved that request and interrupted the DOJ’s investigation into the documents.
The DOJ appealed that decision, but has since said it would not block the special captain’s appointment. Instead, last week the agency asked an appeals court to allow the FBI access to some 100 of the most sensitive documents extracted from Mar-a-Lago, instead of letting them go through the vetting process. Nearly 11,000 others were yet to appear before the arbitrator.
“While the government believes that the district court made a fundamental mistake in appointing a special captain and granting injunctions, the government is seeking to suspend only those parts of the warrant that most seriously affect the government and the public. and cause immediate harm,” attorneys for the Justice Department wrote in the file.
Trump’s latest appeals case says the DOJ has failed to prove that the documents it seeks are “in fact classified.” The judge will hear preliminary information about the case on Tuesday.