Jack Smith Previews Incriminating Trial Testimony From Trump’s Own Officials

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As trial approaches in the criminal case against Donald Trump for allegedly attempted election interference after the 2020 presidential race, prosecutors led by Special Counsel Jack Smith continue rebuffing the lies related to that election that the former president’s team continues to put forward.

In a new filing that confronts, among other arguments from the Trump team, the idea that partisan considerations were behind statements from government officials attesting to the documented security of the 2020 elections, prosecutors provide the reminder that Trump himself selected key figures involved in examining the race. That group includes the now former leader of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) at the Department of Homeland Security, an agency that, in its current form, Trump himself created! (As president, he signed the founding federal rules.) Consistent among credible federal officials was the rejection of Trump’s claims about the election, so the personnel list continues.

“To be clear, the authors of these reports are fact witnesses who do not work for or answer to the prosecution team,” the government said of past statements from government agencies/departments including CISA, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice, adding: “The relevant federal components were led by officials the defendant appointed and promoted. The Government anticipates these witnesses will provide testimony that incriminates the defendant, but their reports were prepared while they worked under the defendant’s leadership, not the prosecution team’s.”

Prosecutors noted Trump created CISA, whose originally Trump-picked leader, Chris Kise, became another political target for the now former president’s circles after Kise endorsed findings of the election’s integrity. “This counterfactual assertion is bewildering,” the government said of Trump claims that an agency statement after the election traced to partisan ambitions. “The defendant created CISA through an executive order. […] He personally appointed the Director of CISA, and when he terminated that director, went out of his way to pick the replacement under the federal Vacancies Reform Act.”