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Donald Trump Is In a World of Deep Trouble

Donald Trump provided prosecutors in the Mar-a-Lago documents case with a trove of evidence in this Fox interview.

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC 2011 in Washington, D.C. Image Credit: Creative Commons.
Donald Trump speaking at CPAC 2011 in Washington, D.C.

The Donald Trump Interview, A Nightmare for His Lawyers: Most lawyers would tell their clients to avoid doing media interviews to avoid self-incrimination.

However, former President Donald Trump is not most clients.

His Fox News interview with Bret Baier exemplifies why he finds himself in his current legal predicament. He never listens. He just does what he wants.

Donald Trump: In a World of Deep Trouble Now 

Carelessness and recklessness have long characterized his personal conduct, which has played into the hands of his political enemies.

Donald Trump provided prosecutors in the Mar-a-Lago documents case with a trove of evidence in this Fox interview. They can use it to convince a jury that the former president obstructed justice. This could take on added significance should the trial commence on August 14 as Trump appointee Federal District Judge Aileen Cannon has ordered.

Trump Attacks Barr

Trump deflected criticism by former Attorney General Bill Barr of his defense for holding onto highly classified materials without subsequent authorization by calling him a “coward” who he said he fired for not doing his job. Barr likely angered Trump by telling the press that no evidence of voter fraud had emerged after the 2020 election.

At the time of Barr’s departure, Trump tweeted in contrast with his statement to Baier, “Just had a very nice meeting with Attorney General Bill Barr at the White House. Our relationship has been a very good one, he has done an outstanding job! As per letter, Bill will be leaving just before Christmas to spend the holidays with his family.”

Barr has stated that the Presidential Records Act that Donald Trump has hitched his legal defense to does not apply to the sorts of classified materials that Trump kept after leaving the White House.

“The legal theory by which he gets to take battle plans and sensitive national security information as his personal papers is absurd. It’s just as wacky as the legal doctrine they came up with for having the vice president unilaterally determine who won the election,” Barr told Robert Costa on CBS News’s “Face the Nation.”

Trump dismissed this sentiment as personal hatred.

The former attorney general noted that the law only applies to non-governmental items belonging to a president. He also called Trump’s claim that he should get a pass because Hillary Clinton got off easy “frivolous.”

The documents taken from Mar-a-Lago include highly classified documents with a need to know, such as black projects covered under Special Access Programs (SAP) designation, information obtained by spies in the field, nuclear secrets, and other highly classified Top Secret documents.

Trump Ignores Details in Interview

Trump kept the documents in unsecured locations across Mar-a-Lago where foreign spies could easily compromise them.

“Like every other president, I take things out. And in my case, I took it out pretty much in a hurry. But people packed it up and we left. I had clothing in there I had all sorts of personal items in there much, much stuff,” Trump said. “I had clothing in there. I had all sorts of personal items in there.

“I have lots of things in there. I will go through those boxes. I have to go through those boxes and take out some personal things. As far as the levels. Everything in there was declassified because I had the right to declassify.”

Trump deflected away from his personal indiscretions onto President Joe Biden’s retention of classified documents from his time as vice president.

“I had every right to have those boxes. This is purely a Presidential Records Act. This is not a criminal thing,” Trump said, claiming he refused to return the boxes to the National Archives because he was busy and they contained what he said were his personal artifacts. “Everything was declassified.”

Trump Defends Conduct In Recording

Trump defended his conduct and admitted to having told a journalist writing a book on former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows in July 2021 that he could not declassify documents because he no longer was president. The indictment states that Trump allegedly showed the journalist a classified document.

“Bret, there was no document. That was a massive amount of papers and everything else, talking about Iran and other things. And it may have been held up or may not. That was not a document. I didn’t have any documents per se. There was nothing to declassify, these were newspaper stories, magazine stories, and articles,” he said.

News stories frequently appear among highly classified material, according to various sources.

At the same time, Trump accused those who recorded him of being “very dishonest people” who were “thugs.”

Trump’s interview will no doubt be used by prosecutors against him at trial. 

John Rossomando is an opinion writer for 19FortyFive and an award-winning conservative journalist. 

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Written By

John Rossomando is a senior analyst for Defense Policy and served as Senior Analyst for Counterterrorism at The Investigative Project on Terrorism for eight years. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award in 2008 for his reporting.