The Coming Indictment of Donald Trump
This week’s events illuminate the increasing likelihood that the Department of Justice will indict the former president on serious charges – here’s why
On Thursday evening, President Joe Biden addressed the nation in a speech that was televised live from Philadelphia’s historic Independence Hall. Perhaps fortunately for the country, the major networks didn’t show it, considering it more a partisan campaign speech than a bona fide presidential address to the nation, so few Americans saw it. That speech can be fairly termed a barn burner from the stunning visuals – Marine guards, blood-red lighting – to the intemperate message, which was hardly evocative of the unity which Biden promised when he entered the Oval Office almost 20 months ago.
The divisive content of that speech, which many Republicans (not just MAGA fans) considered tantamount to a declaration of war on their venerable party, can be left for another time. It says something that even normally supportive outlets like CNN and the Washington Post expressed displeasure with Biden’s stridently partisan tone, while the fact that the president walked back his own words the very next day indicates that his speech didn’t poll well at all. The midterms are coming soon.
Yet, Biden’s speech debacle was rapidly overtaken in Friday’s news cycle by the Department of Justice’s release of a detailed property inventory of the materials seized by the FBI during their August 8 search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence. Coming on the heels of this week’s DoJ release of that infamous photograph showing a pile of reclaimed classified information on that remarkable carpet, Friday’s information landed like a bombshell. What the FBI hauled away on August 8 consisted of over 11,000 documents which the National Archives and Records Administration assess are the property of the U.S. Government, not the former president.
Included in that trove were 102 U.S. Government documents bearing classification markings: 31 at the CONFIDENTAL level, 53 at the SECRET level, and 18 at the TOP SECRET level. Several of those documents were marked Sensitive Compartmented Information, meaning they required special handling which Trump and his minions were supposed to provide, but did not. This matter demands a detailed Intelligence Community Damage Assessment, which as this newsletter recently explained, will take months to unravel the damage to classified sources and methods caused by this massive mishandling and potential spillage of classified National Defense Information.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial