Court of Appeals Temporarily Blocks Capitol Riot Committee Access to Trump Documents in White House

Court Of Appeals Temporarily Blocks Capitol Riot Committee Access To Trump Documents In White House

A panel of three judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has temporarily blocked the National Archives and Records Administration from supplying Trump administration to the House Committee investigating the January 6 uprising.

The panel, consisting of Circuit Judges Patricia A Millett and Robert L Wilkins – both. were nominated to court by former President Barack Obama — and a presidential appointee Joe Biden Biden, Circuit Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson — has issued a brief two-page injunction granting former President Donald Trump’s request for a temporary injunction that prevents Nara from making a tranche of documents created in the White House during the period prior to the worst attack on the Capitol since the burning of Washington in 1814.

The court also granted Mr Trump’s request to expedite his appeal. Mr. Trump’s attorneys will file their opening memorandum in court on Nov. 16, and the defendants — the House Select Committee to Investigate the Jan. 6 Attack on the Capitol, Representative Bennie Thompson (the committee chair), Nara, and archivist for the United States David Ferriero — will comment a week later on November 22.

Trump’s attorneys will file another response two days later, and the court will hear pleadings on the case at 9:30 a.m. Nov. 30.

The former president last month filed a lawsuit against the commission and Nara to prevent the commission from accessing the documents, including call and visitor logs, memoranda, draft decisions and other documents.

The former president claims he can block Congress from accessing the requested documents because they are protected under: executive privilege, a legal doctrine that protects communication between and between a president and his advisers.

Trump turned to the courts for help after White House counsel Dana Remus announced that President Joe Biden had decided not to claim privilege over the documents, citing the “unique and extraordinary circumstances” that were presented by the attack, which was perpetrated by the former president’s supporters in hopes of preventing Congress from confirming Biden’s 2020 election victory.

In his emergency motion requesting a stay of the court’s order, Mr. Trump’s attorneys argue that if the court’s ruling is not suspended, the former president “will suffer irreparable harm from the effective denial of a constitutional and legal right to be fully heard on a serious disagreement between the former and the incumbent president”.

“President Trump is one of only five living Americans who, as former presidents, have been charged with protecting the data and communications created during their tenure,” they wrote, adding that the former president “has the right to be heard and seek judicial intervention should a disagreement arise between the incumbent and former presidents regarding congressional requests and executive privileges”.

Such an argument is similar to one already rejected by U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who wrote on Tuesday that Mr Trump had failed to demonstrate that he would suffer irreparable harm from handing over documents to the commission.

“To the extent that Plaintiff alleges that he will be harmed as a private individual, he has not identified any personal interest threatened by the production of presidential documents. He claims to have no personal interest in the records or the information they contain, and he does not identify any apparent damage to privacy, property, or otherwise that he will personally suffer if the records are produced, let alone any damage that “would certainly if great’ … if injunctive relief is denied,” she wrote, later adding that the privilege Mr Trump is claiming is intended to benefit the country, not the presidents personally.

Judge Chutkan also ruled that, despite Mr. Trump’s claims to the contrary, the right to invoke administrative law belongs to the incumbent president, meaning it is Mr. Biden — not Mr. Trump — who is in the best position to decide whether it is in the public interest for Congress to see the documents in question.

“Plaintiff does not recognize the deference due to the judgment of the incumbent president. His position that he can ignore the express will of the executive appears to be based on the idea that his executive “exists forever,” she wrote. “But presidents are not kings, and Plaintiff is not president. He retains the right to claim his data is privileged, but the incumbent president “is not constitutionally required to honor that claim”.

The judge later added that Mr Biden’s decision not to use the privilege “is consistent with historical practice and its constitutional powers”.

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