Trump argues January 6 committee could damage the presidency in quest for his records

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Trump is appealing against the lower court’s decision to hand over his records to the committee. The Biden administration and the US House are united in opposing the former president’s efforts to keep records secret, arguing that more than 700 pages, including White House call logs and notes from his top advisers, should be available for scrutiny.

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A federal appeals court will hear oral arguments in the historic case on November 30.

“The appellants’ apparent disdain for President Trump is prompting them to take action that would result in permanent damage to the institution of the presidency,” Trump’s attorneys wrote in their response to the DC Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday.

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“A current president cannot destroy the confidentiality of executive branch communications and vital dependency interests associated with that privacy for his own political gain, to the detriment of his predecessors and successors,” he continued.

The Biden administration refused to claim executive privilege on record, and Trump argues that it could mean a future president decides to violate privacy at the White House if his predecessor is from a different political party. Huh.
The Biden administration has argued that all documents Trump is trying to keep secret will eventually be made public, under the National Archives’ approach to historical records, and that even if some documents are privileged, the White House believes ​​—that there is an “extraordinary” need for transparency when it comes to January 6.
Federal Judge Tanya Chutkan of a lower-level court ruled against Trump earlier this month, saying he has no power to override the current administration’s decisions.

Trump, now arguing over them in appeals court, says he should win the case and block the House committee as a “constitutional protection” and as a way to protect the president’s executive privilege. He then asks the court to look at documents from his Presidency page to determine what should remain preserved—an approach that will almost certainly drag document production over several months or years.

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Trump’s lawyers wrote Wednesday, “The specific analysis of whether each record is properly produceable should be completed document-by-document, and not from the scattergun approach advocated by Apelles and the district court.”

The three-judge appellate panel hearing the case is already questioning that approach. After receiving the first round of written legal briefs on the case, he asked on Tuesday whether the lawyers involved could address the question during their oral arguments as to whether the court has the capacity to step into the dispute.

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