by Sharon Rondeau

(Dec. 16, 2022) — At approximately 7:30 AM EST Friday, 45th President of the United States and 2024 presidential contender Donald J. Trump posted on his TruthSocial account that the “special prosecutor” assigned by the Biden Justice Department to investigate whether or not he violated any laws by housing certain documents from his White House tenure at his resort in Mar-a-Lago, “has found NOTHING that I have done wrong or differently than other Presidents.”

“Based on recent developments, including the former president’s announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election, and the sitting president’s stated intention to be a candidate as well, I have concluded that it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference on November 18.

Trump declared his candidacy for 2024 on November 15.

Many Republicans believe Garland’s move constitutes a “weaponization” of the Justice Department.

Smith’s assignment is twofold: to investigate “Trump’s conduct during the Jan. 6 riot, as well as his handling of classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago home,” The Washington Examiner reported. Smith has thus far issued subpoenas to several former Trump aides and, more recently, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who Trump contacted in a phone call with attorneys present regarding his reported outcome of the 2020 election.

The documents in question were the target of an unprecedented FBI raid of a former president’s residence in early August while Trump and his family were in New York City and the resort officially closed for the season. The Justice Department claims Trump kept “classified” documents which belong to the National Archives, while Trump and his attorneys claim all of the documents remaining at Mar-a-Lago after an initial number of boxes were sent to the National Archives upon request were “declassified” prior to his leaving office.

Medical records and passports were taken, with the latter returned within several days. However, Trump and his attorneys claim that photos the Justice Department released of purportedly classified documents strewn in folders on the floorshow the FBI’s handiwork rather than his own.

Thus far, the legacy media has not questioned whether or not Trump’s civil, constitutional or presidential rights were violated by the raid, which reportedly also included rummaging through the Trumps’ teenage son Barron’s room as well as former First Lady Melania Trump’s personal items.

As Trump referenced in his post Friday morning, he believes the documents he was keeping at the Florida resort are covered by the Presidential Records Act, which constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley reported is not a criminal statute and has never resulted in a prosecution. Trump’s reference to the 2012 “Clinton Socks Case” is to tape-recordings former President Bill Clinton was known to have kept in his “sock drawer” after leaving the White House which a federal judge said were off-limits to FOIA requesters, in this case the public-interest watchdog organization Judicial Watch.

At the time, Politico reported, the National Archives did not consider the tapes to be “presidential records,” although they contained interviews between Clinton and journalist Taylor Branch about Clinton’s presidency.

From 2018 until his new appointment, Smith was lead prosecutor at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands of war crimes committed in Kosovo during the late 1990s.

Several sources reported Friday that the first conviction for such crimes was handed down by the tribunal, “sentencing a former rebel commander who ran a makeshift torture centre to 26 years in jail.”

A Justice Department biographical page on Smith has been removed.

In 2010, ABC News reported, Smith ran the public integrity unit at the Justice Department, “where he oversaw high-profile cases that often targeted elected officials.”

“His section played a role in the failed prosecution of former senator and Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards for alleged campaign finance violations aimed at hiding an extramarital affair,” the article continues. “Smith was chief when Edwards was indicted in 2011, but the DOJ dropped the case after a trial led to a deadlocked jury.

“Smith has also demonstrated the capacity to drop cases when the evidence does not bear out a crime, former colleagues said, pointing to his decision to close a years-long case against former Rep. Tom Delay, R-Texas,” the outlet reported.

Public reporting says that Smith’s wife, Katy Chevigny, was “a producer for Michelle Obama‘s documentary and donated $1,000 to Joe Biden‘s 2020 presidential campaign.”

The film about Obama, “Becoming,” was released in 2020.

The January 6, 2021 incident at the U.S. Capitol interrupted the counting of the electoral votes from the November 3, 2020 election, a contest Trump claims he won but that massive fraud and, more recently, social-media coordination with government agencies, worked against him in the weeks and months prior to the election.

Earlier this year, the “Select Committee” organized to purportedly investigate the origins of the riot held a number of hearings which included choreographed testimony, often pre-recorded, aided by a former ABC News executive. While no additional public hearings are scheduled at this time, the committee will hold a “business meeting” on Monday said to be a “likely final” one.

The two Republicans on the nine-person committee will leave Congress on January 3 once their replacements are sworn in. Rep. Liz Cheney (WY) lost her primary, while Adam Kinzinger (IL) chose not to seek re-election.

The Post & Email contacted the Justice Department for comment on Trump’s assertion and will update this article if and when a response is received.

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