How did classified material make its way to Mar-a-Lago with Donald Trump when he skipped town ahead of President Joe Biden’s inauguration in 2021? That’s a question for the FBI, which the agency has started investigating, according to reports. (A spokesperson refused to confirm or deny such an investigation when asked by The Washington Post, but there are multiple reports it’s happening.)
Unfortunately, the FBI investigation is currently blocking a parallel investigation by the House Oversight Committee, which Rep. Carolyn Maloney, the committee chair, expressed concern about in a recent letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland. But the FBI investigation itself is an interesting addition to the long list of investigations into Trump’s various activities both in public office and in private business. Just Thursday, New York Attorney General Letitia James asked for Trump to be held in contempt of court in a separate investigation.
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The New York Times reports that such an investigation would likely not target any specific individual. The questions asked, to start, would be whether the material involved was properly classified, whether it was mishandled, whether there was any chance that anyone got improper access to it, and, well, how it got to Florida along with many other White House records that should have stayed with the government rather than arrived at a private resort and club.
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Nonetheless, Trump has been on the defensive about those 15 boxes of records, saying in a recent statement, “The fake news is making it seem like me, as the president of the United States, was working in a filing room.” In other words, “Don’t blame me, it was my underlings.”
In addition to the FBI and House investigations of the mishandled records, Trump faces investigations by the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, the New York attorney general (as previously mentioned), Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, and Fulton County, Georgia, District Attorney Fani Willis. That’s in addition to several lawsuits, including with his niece Mary Trump, magazine writer E. Jean Carroll, and his longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen.
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