Trump says he wants the all-important affidavit released without redactions. He has made the request because he knows it won’t happen. But he gets to say that DOJ is hiding and has no case. The judge is not going to allow an affidavit stuffed with the identities of informants and national secrets to be released. But apparently, the judge will allow DOJ to propose redactions and then issue portions of the affidavit. According to one of the country’s most elite prosecutors, Andrew Weissman, there are elements of the affidavit that could be devastating for Trump.
Republicans have been screaming, “He has been cooperating for nine months, why couldn’t they just ask? Why not just subpoena the documents?”
Weismann says that even though neither the national security elements of the case nor the informants’ identities, the affidavit will meticulously describe the dozens of opportunities Trump had to turn these documents over and have avoided the search warrant. In that way, the affidavit could be utterly devastating to Trump, who will find it much harder to play the victim. From his interview with Ari Melber:
“So remember that the district court — the magistrate judge has seen the entire affidavit, so when the government was saying it’s all something that’s sensitive to a criminal investigation or it’s all something sensitive from a national security perspective or witnesses, he has in front of him the affidavit.
“So he can sort of see, are there portions that don’t implicate those concerns? So the thing that I think we will still not see is anything that could reveal the identity of witnesses. I don’t think we’re going to learn anything about the substance of classified information, those kinds of documents.”
No, those sections will be black and for very good reasons. Lives will be on the line. But:
“An area where I do think we could see something that would be very useful is the whole back-and-forth between the Department and Donald Trump and his people.
“That’s something that Donald Trump knows, those people can clearly put it out there and I could see the judge saying, you know what, I don’t really see how that implicates so much the concerns here from a national security perspective. Maybe some of the substance would be redacted, but that seems like it would give us a fair amount of detail on something, and more than we know now.”
If one writes an affidavit in support of a warrant to search an ex-president’s residence, the single largest section is going to be a meticulously detailed breakdown of every single effort made to resolve the matter without involving law enforcement entering the home. Every single phone call, letter, discussion, attorney meeting, and every other interaction concerning the documents will be described in great detail. It will be devastating evidence that Trump lied, over and over. He hid. He was given more opportunities than the average person by a factor of five, and in the end, he still lied and held critical national secrets in an unsecured location.
It will be obvious that Trump left the government no choice. The only way that the government was getting its Top Secret-SCI nuclear files back was to go in and get them.
The redacted affidavit will then become the launching pad for a possible indictment. The public will see how Trump practically indicted himself. Many Republicans have held their fire on the matter in anticipation that it could start to look really bad. It will start with that portion of the affidavit.
@JasonMiciak believes a day without learning is a day not lived. He is a political writer, features writer, author, and attorney. He is a Canadian-born dual citizen who spent his teen and college years in the Pacific Northwest and has since lived in seven states. He now enjoys life as a single dad of a young girl, writing from the beaches of the Gulf Coast. He loves crafting his flower pots, cooking, and currently studies philosophy of science, religion, and non-math principles behind quantum mechanics and cosmology. Please feel free to contact for speaking engagements or any concerns.