Trump told advisors last year he'd return Mar-a-Lago files in exchange for documents about the FBI probe into his 2016 campaign and the ties to Russia. His aides reportedly knew this was a bad idea and never acted on it.
October 9, 2022

Who's surprised that it appears Trump basically was hoping to be able to blackmail the National Archives into giving him documents that would have supposedly shown that he did not conspire with the Russians to help his 2016 presidential campaign?

Here's more via Insider:

  • Trump floated the idea of trading Mar-a-Lago boxes for documents on the Russia probe, per The NYT.
  • Aides to Trump did not pitch his proposal to the National Archives, knowing it would be rejected.
  • Trump repeatedly delayed the agency's calls for him to turn over the boxes, per the newspaper.

Former President Donald Trump late last year floated the idea of swapping the files that he took from the White House to Mar-a-Lago in exchange for "sensitive" documents about the FBI investigation of his 2016 campaign's ties to Russia, according to The New York Times.

As the National Archives pressed Trump to return the scores of official documents that were being stored at his Mar-a-Lago estate in South Florida and not in their possession, the former president — still smarting from the Russia probe — was frustrated by the government agency's refusal to disclose documents that he felt would back up his claims, per The Times.

Trump told advisors that in order to obtain access to those documents, he would give the archives the boxes of materials that were stored at Mar-a-Lago, according to the newspaper.

And from The Daily Beast on his aides refusing to go through with it.

Trump insisted they contained nothing important, some just had dirty laundry. But after more pushing from his team, Trump pitched a deal: give the government back its files in exchange for proof that the FBI’s Russia investigation was a “hoax,” the Times reported. His aides knew the idea would be a “non-starter” and never acted on it. After one of Trump’s attorneys warned him he could face serious consequences if he did not return the classified documents, the former president, who kept insisting the “boxes were ‘mine,’” began going through them last December, the Times said. The news is the latest in the ongoing saga, which has sparked a Justice Department investigation into Trump's handling of the classified material. Federal investigators still believe he is withholding government documents, the Times reported earlier this week.

Why the DOJ hasn't charged him yet is beyond me.

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