Adam Schiff Exposes Trump Guilt Amid Criminal Probe Into Docs

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Asked on MSNBC this Monday about new reporting from The New York Times regarding the number of classified documents recovered from ex-President Donald Trump since he left office (a total surpassing 300), Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) characterized key revelations as “staggering.”

“It seems that it must be quite deliberate if the volume is that great,” Schiff remarked. “And, if the reporting is accurate, it covered a broad range of topics… If they covered a wide variety of topics, it really begs the question: what was he doing? What was he thinking? What was the purpose behind this? And then finally, evidence that he reviewed them himself is going to make it much more difficult to foist responsibility onto others.”

Host Rachel Maddow subsequently asked Schiff about what seems like Trump himself getting personally implicated in the withholding of particular documents, since the report from the Times says Trump “went through” the 15 boxes that were provided to the National Archives in January before the agency got them. (Over 700 pages of classified documents were found in those boxes, according to a May letter from the head of the Archives.) Those details suggest Trump was potentially personally responsible for holding back specific materials from what the National Archives initially obtained, which they only got after communications with Trump’s team across 2021. In the recent raid of Mar-a-Lago connected to the Justice Department probe into the handling of government docs from the Trump administration, FBI agents recovered nearly a dozen sets of classified documents, including some of the most highly restricted information in the U.S. government.

In other words, a lot was left behind. On MSNBC, Schiff noted how key actions driving the scandal appear willful. He brought up a signed June statement from a Trump lawyer that, according to the Times, said all the documents marked classified from a particular storage area were returned to federal authorities. “Now, was that not true because the lawyer was deliberately misleading people, or was it not true because his client had deliberately misled him?” Schiff asked of the signed statement. “I’m sure the Justice Department is trying to find out. From an intel committee perspective, though, we’re just really frightened of what’s in that stockpile, particularly those that are marked top secret/ SCI, sensitive compartmented information. Because those generally mean that there’s a very sensitive source involved. Might be a human source whose life could be put at risk or a technical source that if it’s discovered means we’re going to have a blind spot where we used to be able to see.”

According to the Times, items in the 15 boxes the Archives got in January included materials from the FBI, CIA, and NSA “spanning a variety of topics of national security interest.” The letter from the Archives chief that revealed the total pages of classified docs found in the January cache also said Special Access Program materials were discovered. Docs identified as such are subject to special security protocols beyond what ordinarily covers materials at the same classification level. The letter also indicates that the Justice Department’s National Security Division provided info to Trump’s team in April about national security concerns regarding the handling of the materials. The Times adds the Justice Department is seeking surveillance footage from Mar-a-Lago beyond what it already obtained. Security tapes would allow investigators to examine who exactly may have accessed the items at Trump’s Florida property. Check out Schiff’s comments below: