Donald Trump’s lawyer asked a federal judge on Thursday to stop sending to Congress thousands of documents related to the former president’s actions in the January 6 attack on Capitol, but the magistrate did not believe his arguments. The Republican millionaire wants to keep these documents secret, including lists of people who met or invited him that day, as told by a parliamentary commission in the hands of Democrats.
This “special committee” of the House of Representatives was set up to assess the role played by Donald Trump in the attack on the Congress seat by his supporters when elected officials certified Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election.
Donald Trump, who denies any responsibility for the attack, condemns “a political game” and refuses to cooperate. Despite being summoned by Congress, he went to court in the name of the exclusivity of executive power to keep his communications secret.
“Former presidents have the right to exercise this privilege,” his lawyer, Justin Clark, argued at a hearing in Washington on Thursday.
But Judge Tanya Sutkan responded that “the best person in the administration is the one who decides whether the executive’s specialty applies.”
“We didn’t talk about bank statements or accounting records before you became your client’s chairman, but we did talk about the notes he exchanged when people smashed windows and entered Capitol,” he notes from previous legal battles.
“We are, in essence, talking about documents related to the use of force,” Judge Sudkan said.
However, in the number of documents requested, he offered the lawyer: “I agree with you (…) that some of the requests seem very vague, but others are very specific to the January 6 events.”
At the end of the hearing, the judge promised to deliver his decision “quickly”.