Posts tagged with "Truth Social"

Justice Department objects to releasing affidavit used to search Trump’s home

August 17, 2022

On Monday, August 15, the Justice Department contested making public the affidavit used to justify the search of former President Donald Trump’s home in Florida—saying its release would “compromise future investigative steps” and “likely chill” cooperation with witnesses, reports The New York Times.

In a 13-page pleading, filed in a federal court in southern Florida in response to requests by The New York Times and other news organizations to make public the evidence included in the document, prosecutors suggested that the department has undertaken a broad, intensive inquiry into Trump’s handling of some of the most secret documents of the government after he left office.

The prosecutors acknowledged interviewing witnesses in connection with the investigation of. Trump’s retention of the material. They also wrote that releasing the document could compromise the continuing investigation.

“Disclosure of the government’s affidavit at this stage would also likely chill future cooperation by witnesses whose assistance may be sought as this investigation progresses,” prosecutors wrote. They added that releasing the affidavit could harm “other high-profile investigations,” as well.

One of the reasons proposed by the government for not releasing the affidavit was to protect the identities of witnesses against death threats. On Monday, prosecutors in Pennsylvania unsealed charges against a man accused of repeatedly threatening to kill F.B.I. agents in the days after Trump’s property was searched.

The magistrate judge who signed the search warrant, Bruce E. Reinhart, ultimately will decide whether the affidavit should be released. It is unclear when he will rule on the news media’s request.

According to the Times, “The legal—and political—aftershocks from the search were still reverberating a week after F.B.I. agents appeared at the resort while the president was at his club in Bedminster, New Jersey.”

Trump—who has accused Attorney General Merrick Garland of conducting a politically motivated “witch hunt” and roughly rifling through his family’s possessions—claimed on Monday that the government “stole my three Passports,” in a post on Truth Social, the online platform he founded.

By late Monday, the Justice Department had contacted Trump’s legal team to retrieve the three passports—two of them expired and the third an active diplomatic passport, according to one of the former president’s lawyers, Evan Corcoran, and a spokesman for the department.

In a statement late Monday, the F.B.I. said that it “follows search and seizure procedures ordered by courts; then, returns items that do not need to be retained for law enforcement purposes.”

Garland agreed last week to release the warrant used to search Trump’s private club, but has resisted attempts to make public the underlying affidavit—a far more sensitive document that should contain, among other things, the reasons prosecutors believe there was probable cause that evidence of a crime could be found at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s estate in Palm Beach, Florida.

The investigation into the mishandling of government documents—while known for months—had not been considered to be as significant as the department’s sprawling investigation into the attack on the Capitol, which has been moving closer to Trump and his top advisers.

Federal agents removed top secret documents when they searched Trump’s residence last week as part of an investigation into possible violations of the Espionage Act and other laws, according to a search warrant made public on Friday.

At least one lawyer for Trump signed a written statement in June asserting that all material marked as classified and held in boxes in a storage area at Mar-a-Lago had been returned to the government, four people with knowledge of the document said.

Even as the former president counterattacked, new details emerged of how Trump and his inner circle flouted the norms, and possibly the laws, governing their handling of government records.

According to two people with knowledge of the situation, Trump and his Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, the man who oversaw presidential records in the chaotic closing days of the administration, failed to organize an effort to collect, box, and deliver materials to the National Archives — as prior presidents former Vice President Mike Pence, did.

Instead, they often focused on settling political grievances and personal grudges, they said.

In the weeks leading up to Trump’s departure from the White House, officials discussed what to do about material that he had at various points taken up to the residence and that needed to be properly stored and returned.

By then, the staff secretary, Derek Lyons, known for trying to keep systems in place, had left the administration. Meadows said he would address such issues, according to a senior administration official.

As Mr. Trump sought to hold on to power, two of Pence’s senior aides—Marc Short, his chief of staff, and Greg Jacob, his counsel—indexed and boxed all of his government papers, according to three former officials with knowledge of the work.

Jacob spent the bulk of his final few days in government preparing the final boxes, with the goal of ensuring that Mr. Pence left office without a single paper that did not belong to him, one of the officials said.

Research contact: @nytimes

Josh Hawley pledges not to‘run,’ after being caught running from Trump mob

July 26, 2022

On Thursday evening, July 21, during a primetime hearing, the January 6 committee played stunning footage  of Senator  Josh Hawley  (R-Missouri) running away from a mob of pro-Trump vigilantes that he had been seen riling up just hours earlier, reports The Daily Beast.

Despite the clip—which clearly showed the Republican lawmaker on the run from the Capitol attackers—nearly 24 hours later, he pledged to a group of young conservative activists that he would not “run” away from a battle.

“Hey, listen, I know what I’m talking about because I had them do it to me,” he proudly declared at Turning Point USA’s summer conference in Tampa on Friday evening—referring to being called a “traitor” over pushing for “election integrity.”

“I objected on January 6 last year to the state of Pennsylvania,” he boasted, adding,

“And I just want to say to all of those liberals out there and the liberal media, just in case you haven’t gotten the message yet, I do not regret it,” Hawley continued. “And I am not backing down. I’m not gonna apologize, I’m not gonna cower, I’m not gonna run from you.”

“I’m not gonna bend the knee,” he concluded.

The remarks come as both Hawley and former President Donald Trump attempt to push back on the bombshell January 6 hearing, The Daily Beast says.

Late Thursday night, Trump had a meltdown on his social media site, Truth Social. “I had an election Rigged and Stolen from me, and our Country. The USA is going to Hell,” he fumed after midnight. “Am I supposed to be happy?”

A source close to the ex-president told The Daily Beast during the hearing that Trump has expressed continued frustration at the “one-sided forum,” which gives no opportunity for “cross-examination” or the ability for Trump to “present [his] side.”

“There’s no courtroom in this country where that would be allowed,” the source, who regularly speaks to Trump, said.

Research contact:

Trump called ‘within the last week’ to overturn Wisconsin election results, speaker says

July 21, 2022

Wisconsin’s Republican house speaker said on Tuesday, July 19, that former president Donald Trump called him “within the last week”—seeking to overturn the 2020 presidential election, reports The Washington Post.

Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos  told WISN in Milwaukee that he received a call from Trump after the state Supreme Court ruled on July 8 that most  absentee ballot drop boxes in Wisconsin are illegal. The ruling addresses future elections—not the one Trump lost in 2020 by more than 20,000 votes.

“It’s very consistent. He makes his case, which I respect,” Vos said to WISN. “He would like us to do something different in Wisconsin. I explained that it’s not allowed under the Constitution. He has a different opinion.”

Vos said Trump then posted about him on social media. In a July 13 post on Truth Social, Trump’s social media platform, the former president repeated his baseless claims of election fraud and falsely accused the speaker of letting Democrats “get away with ‘murder.’”

“What a waste of a brilliant and courageous decision by Wisconsin’s Highest Court,” Trump wrote.

On Tuesday night, Trump posted again on Truth Social and said Vos’s Republican primary opponent, Adam Steen, could benefit if Vos doesn’t take action. The primary is August 9. A spokesperson for Trump did not respond to a request for comment.

“This is not a time for him to hide, but a time to act!” Trump wrote. “I don’t know his opponent in the upcoming Primary, but feel certain he will do well if Speaker Vos doesn’t move with gusto. Robin, don’t let the voters of Wisconsin down!”

Over the last year, Vos has said he talks to Trump regularly even though they do not see eye to eye on how to deal with the 2020 election. Vos did not immediately respond to a request for an interview Wednesday morning.

Steen said he has not talked to Trump but that the former president’s comments are lending fuel to his primary campaign. He criticized Vos for not advancing the resolution that seeks to undo the 2020 results.

“If you really want the people to know that their vote counts, you want to find the answer so what he is doing to me is spitting in the face of men and women who have given their life to this country,” he said.

In his WISN interview, Vos downplayed Trump’s latest push to try to change the results in Wisconsin. “I think we all know Donald Trump is Donald Trump,” Vos said. “There’s very little we can do to control or predict what he will do.”

Research contact: @washingtonpost

Trump slams Ivanka and denies saying Pence ‘deserves’ to hang in ‘Truth Social’ meltdown

June 13, 2022

After a video clip displayed by the January 6 House Committee plainly showed  Ivanka Trump testifying that she didn’t believe her dad’s wild theory that the 2020 election was stolen—but instead that she accepted former Attorney General Bill Barr’s assurance that there had been no fraud connected with the 2020 election—her father, former President Donald Trump returned the favor by attacking her credibility as a witness, reports The Daily Beast.

Specifically, Ivanka told the congressional panel that she had changed her mind about whether or not the election was rigged after Barr, Trump’s AG for most of 2020, told her that it wasn’t. “I respect Attorney General Barr,” Ivanka said on the video of her testimony shown by the committee during a prime time special on Thursday night, June 9, “So I accepted what he was saying.

In immediate reaction, the following morning, Trump did not hesitate to throw his supposed favorite child under the bus: The former president rushed to tell his followers that they should pay no mind to what his daughter had said. “Ivanka Trump was not involved in looking at, or studying, Election results,” the former president wrote. “She had long since checked out and was, in my opinion, only trying to be respectful to Bill Barr and his position as Attorney General (he sucked!).”

In a flurry of missives sent via his Truth Social channel early on Friday, June 10, Trump also denied having agreed with rioters’ chants to hang Mike Pence and—just for good measure—reaffirmed his baseless claim that the election was stolen.

And it wasn’t just Ivanka’s testimony that left Trump all hot and bothered. Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) revealed that former Trump aides said the president had reacted to mob chants to hang his vice president with shocking approval, including with the ice-cold phrase: “Mike Pence deserves it.” Again, Trump contradicted the testimony with all-caps fury. “I NEVER said, or even thought of saying, ‘Hang Mike Pence,’” he wrote. “This is either a made up story by somebody looking to become a star, or FAKE NEWS!”

“The so-called ‘Rush on the Capitol’ was not caused by me,” Trump continued, “It was caused by a Rigged and Stolen Election!” Returning to another familiar refrain, the former commander-in-chief also appeared to sum up his feelings toward the bipartisan House select committee generally as: “A one sided, totally partisan, POLITICAL WITH HUNT!”

He earlier used the platform to claim that the panel “refuses to play any of the many positive witnesses and statements, refuses to talk of the Election Fraud and Irregularities that took place on a massive scale,” before adding: “Our Country is in such trouble!”

At the hearing Thursday, committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) directly blamed Trump for the attack on the Capitol after the 2020 election. “He spurred a mob of domestic enemies of the constitution to march down the capital and subvert American democracy,” Thompson said.

Representative Cheney further pointed to Trump’s repeated claims that the election was stolen as the reason the attack took place. “Those who invaded our Capitol and battled law enforcement for hours were motivated by what President Trump had told them: that the election was stolen, and that he was the rightful president,” Cheney said in her opening statement. “President Trump summoned the mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast