Judge Raymond Dearie, the “special master” appointed to review the ‘classified’ documents seized from Mar-a-Lago blasted Trump’s lawyers at Tuesday’s preliminary conference.
Judge Dearie was one of the FISA judges who signed the warrant to spy on Carter Page without cause.
Raymond Dearie was one of two FISA Court judges who rubber-stamped the warrants to spy on Carter Page.
On Tuesday Judge Dearie repeatedly asked Trump’s lawyers to prove the former president declassified the documents stored at Mar-a-Lago, “You can’t have your cake and eat it,” the judge said according to Politico.
In a new filing Trump’s lawyers argued that the DOJ has never actually proven the documents it claims are classified are actually classified.
“The District Court denied the Government’s stay request, noting it was not inclined to hastily adopt the Government’s contention that the approximately 100 purportedly “classified” documents were, in fact, classified, and that President Trump could not possibly have a possessory interest in any of them.” Trump’s lawyers wrote in the 40-page filing.
The senior federal judge tasked with reviewing the materials seized by the FBI from Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate sharply questioned the former president’s attorneys Tuesday during their first hearing before his courtroom.
Judge Raymond Dearie pushed Trump’s lawyers repeatedly for refusing to back up the former president’s claim that he declassified the highly sensitive national security-related records discovered in his residence.
“You can’t have your cake and eat it,” said Dearie, the “special master” picked by U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon to vet Trump’s effort to reclaim the materials taken by federal investigators.
Trump has argued that the 11,000 documents taken from Mar-a-Lago were rightfully in his possession, including about 100 bearing classification markings that suggest they contain some of the nation’s most closely guarded intelligence.
But Dearie bristled at the effort by Trump’s lawyers to resist his request for proof that Trump actually attempted to declassify any of the 100 documents that the Justice Department recovered from his estate. Without evidence from Trump, Dearie said his only basis to judge the classification level of the records was the fact that they all bear markings designating them as highly sensitive national security secrets — including some that indicate they contain intelligence derived from human sources and foreign intercepts.
President Trump last month described the declassification process in a statement to John Solomon of Just The News.
“He had a standing order that documents removed from the Oval Office and taken into the residence were deemed to be declassified,” Trump’s office said in a statement to Just The News. “The power to classify and declassify documents rests solely with the President of the United States. The idea that some paper-pushing bureaucrat, with classification authority delegated BY THE PRESIDENT, needs to approve of declassification is absurd.”