Former President Donald Trump is reportedly considering allowing federal investigators access to his Mar-a-Lago estate to conduct a supervised search. If so, this will be a new approach to his previously antagonistic and uncooperative behavior regarding the Justice Department’s investigation into whether Trump violated the Presidential Records and Espionage Acts when he took sensitive materials to his Palm Beach home after leaving the White House in disgrace.
“In the throes of multiple legal battles and hoping to alleviate some of the pressure he is facing, Trump has recently signaled to aides and allies that he is open to a less adversarial approach toward the Justine Department,” CNN reported.
The Department of Justice has expressed skepticism that all classified documents have been retrieved—although nearly 22,000 pages were seized during the FBI’s August 8th search of the sprawling estate.
Since the search over two months ago, the ex-President launched an all-out smear campaign on federal law enforcement officials, coupled with several changing and contradictory statements, from accusing the FBI of planting the materials, to asserting the materials “belong” to him.
Known for going where the wind blows—whoever agrees with Trump or supports his objectives—the one term, twice impeached Trump is most likely echoing the words of Tom Fitton. According to CNN, the longtime conservative activist said, “It was a mistake to give the records to the Archives,” and that Trump should refuse to turn over any more records if NARA returns.
Those records belonged to Trump, Fitton argued, citing a 2012 court case involving his organization that he said gave the former President authority to do what he wanted with records from his own term in office.
Except the records don’t belong to former President Trump—nor did they ever.
Since begrudgingly leaving office in January 2021 after his attempted coup failed to prevent the inauguration of then-President-elect Joe Biden, Trump has led the Justice Department on a wild goose chase of sorts, playing cat and mouse with federal investigators who had to return multiple times to the Florida man’s palatial den of treason, and attempting to secure all records belonging to the federal government.
Trump seems to spend much of his days ranting on his struggling social media platform, Truth Social, gaslighting and making unproven claims.
He initially claimed that his team had been fully cooperative with investigators and insisted on social media “ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS ASK,” for documents to be returned. Trump has since argued, on social media and in court filings, that the Mar-a-Lago documents are his property. “I want my documents back!” the former President said in early October.
So why the potential change of heart?
“He is worn down,” one source close to Trump said. “Getting one thing off his plate” would help him move forward.
While he seemed to have thought he hit the legal jackpot with District Judge Aileen Cannon—and in the beginning, it appeared he was right—the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has thrown a wrench in Cannon’s blatant disregard for legal precedent.
The Special Master Trump requested also turned out to be less than accommodating to the ex-President’s legal team’s frivolous filings and claims.
So it makes sense that the twice-impeached, one-term, wannabe dictator would try and circle the wagons as the losses continue to pile up. But one thing is certain when it comes to Donald Trump, nothing is as it seems. There is always a motive—and not a good one.
If Trump agrees to another search of his home, they should start with the other one—Bedminster.
Original reporting by Sara Murray, Kristen Holmes, and Gabby Orr at CNN.
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