The government watchdog organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which it seems has been on somewhat of a tear recently, has filed a request under pieces of federal law ordinarily allowing the release of certain records to the public for materials on Trump from the CIA.
Specifically, what the organization is seeking would cover an evident lack of classified intelligence briefings to Trump, both after the Capitol riot and specifically covering that incident and in general as his presidency drew to a close. It seems like a pretty foundational element of the duties of the presidency, doesn’t it? And yet, CREW pointed to available reports that Trump “refused to be briefed on classified intelligence about the attack on the Capitol” after the violence unfolded. Later, Donald exited the presidency without what was apparently a single additional briefing on classified intel — adding, of course, another notable element to the story of authorities recovering a slew of classified documents from what Trump had on hand at his Florida resort Mar-a-Lago.
Not that such is overly surprising, but it doesn’t seem he was even that committed to engaging as generally required with the serious substance of the nation’s secrets when president. That observation certainly tracks with attempted defenses Trump has made for retaining some of what he had in Florida. In short, he’s insisted that he held onto folders from briefings he received as president ostensibly for the purpose of just taking a souvenir, a startling idea to even entertain. The presidency isn’t a game show, Donald!
CREW, meanwhile, is seeking all agency communications about classified daily briefings for Trump from the first day of December 2020 to the last day he was in office, January 20 of the following year. The agency also specified an ambition of taking possession of communications specifically between the agency and the White House from that same span of time about the briefings Trump would’ve ordinarily been receiving but evidently, well, wasn’t.
The possibility that Trump, obsessed with staying in office, was simply ignoring some of the foundational responsibilities he asked to have as president isn’t great! And now, he’s trying to regain the presidency, focusing on what, exactly? His many personal grievances? How does that help an everyday American trying to deal with something like inflation? CREW has repeatedly filed court action in search of the records that were the subjects of some of these requests when government agencies were less than forthcoming, so there should be an expectation that such is also possible here.