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Trump seeks the widest privilege of hiding exactly what he did on 1/6

Late last week, the DC Court of Appeal gave former President Trump a limited order on the district court’s ruling against executive privilege as applied to the records sought by the Select House Committee. Now, according to USA Today, we know that the documents Trump wants to protect the most include handwritten notes on Jan. 6, appointments for White House visitors, and switchboard logs, including those showing calls between Trump and former Vice President Mike Pence, reported USA Today.

One does not have to be a MENSA member to understand that these documents are likely to reveal the most information about Trump’s exact actions on January 6, such as preparations made in advance, expectations for the day, and who else might was involved in a plan. the White House or the lack of a plan and action once the riots have begun, including decisions to restrain forces from doing anything to stop the riots.

From the report:

“Of the 763 pages in which Trump claimed privilege, 629 are discussion points prepared for the press secretary and 43 include presidential schedules, appointments, activity logs, call logs, among other documents, according to the National Archives filing.”

Clearly, presidential schedules, appointments, activities, and call logs both provide Trump’s level of possible prior awareness of the growing problem, concerns about what happened in real time, and, perhaps most importantly, a list of people who can sue the Select Committee. to find out exactly what Trump said and did throughout the day.

The National Archives has identified nearly 1,600 pages of records that match the committee’s request, with thousands more to be reviewed, according to the agency. Trump tried to keep nearly half of the pages confidential, but the Justice Department responded that it was crucial to the investigation.

Therein lies the collision. The documents deemed most necessary for the committee’s work are the same documents that affect Trump himself. Trump’s argument in court would be that he (and those who appear in any documents) touch on the executive function most fundamentally. The Committee’s request is deliberately seeking that information that most likely fits whatever narrow definition a court may draw. The district court drew no bounds.

The documents sought are scheduled to come out in bundles and at first glance it seems to follow chronologically the most critical to the least, The first set of documents includes daily presidential diaries, schedules, activity logs and first drafts of records, records that a reasonable person would consider the type to provide the broadest information and the most useful to the committee.

The committee needs prompt rulings just as much as the rulings themselves. There are likely to be ways to get a general picture of any specific information contained in the documents sought, but such efforts will take much longer and require more sophisticated ways of obtaining.

For now, with regard to the specific documents in question, the committee is in a race against time and needs to know if it can get that information directly, or develop the “turn around” strategies that may be needed.

The few indications that exist so far lead observers to believe that the Court of Appeal recognizes the need for a highly accelerated process.

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