Exclusive: CNN obtains the tape of Trump’s 2021 conversation about classified documents | CNN Politics

CNN has exclusively obtained the audio recording of the 2021 meeting in Bedminster, New Jersey, where President Donald Trump discusses holding secret documents he did not declassify.

The recording, which first aired on CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” includes new details from the conversation that is a critical piece of evidence in special counsel Jack Smith’s indictment of Trump over the mishandling of classified information, including a moment when Trump seems to indicate he was holding a secret Pentagon document with plans to attack Iran.

“These are the papers,” Trump says in the audio recording, while he’s discussing the Pentagon attack plans, a quote that was not included in the indictment.

In the two-minute audio recording, Trump and his aides also joke about Hillary Clinton’s emails after the former president says that the document was “secret information.”

“Hillary would print that out all the time, you know. Her private emails,” Trump’s staffer said.

“No, she’d send it to Anthony Weiner,” Trump responded, referring to the former Democratic congressman, prompting laughter in the room.

Trump’s statements on the audio recording, saying “these are the papers” and referring to something he calls “highly confidential” and seems to be showing others in the room, could undercut the former president’s claims in an interview last week with Fox News’ Bret Baier that he did not have any documents with him.

“There was no document. That was a massive amount of papers and everything else talking about Iran and other things,” Trump said on Fox. “And it may have been held up or may not, but that was not a document. I didn’t have a document, per se. There was nothing to declassify. These were newspaper stories, magazine stories and articles.”

Trump pleaded not guilty earlier this month to 37 counts related to the alleged mishandling of classified documents kept at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

The audio recording comes from a July 2021 interview Trump gave at his Bedminster resort for people working on the memoir of Mark Meadows, Trump’s former chief of staff. The special counsel’s indictment alleges that those in attendance – a writer, publisher and two of Trump’s staff members – were shown classified information about the plan of attack on Iran.

The episode is one of two referenced in the indictment where prosecutors allege that Trump showed classified information to others who did not have security clearances.

CNN has previously reported that Trump at the time was furious over a New Yorker article about Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Mark Milley that said Milley argued against striking Iran and was concerned Trump would set in motion a full-scale conflict.

The special counsel’s office declined to comment.

Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said in statement that “the audio tape provides context proving, once again, that President Trump did nothing wrong at all.”

The recording obtained by CNN begins with Trump claiming “these are bad sick people,” while his staffer claims there had been a “coup” against Trump.

“Like when Milley is talking about, ‘Oh you’re going to try to do a coup.’ No, they were trying to do that before you even were sworn in,” the staffer says, according to the audio.

The next part of the conversation is mostly included in the indictment, though the audio makes clear there are papers shuffling as Trump tells those in attendance he has an example to show.

“He said that I wanted to attack Iran, Isn’t it amazing?” Trump says as the sound of papers shuffling can be heard. “I have a big pile of papers, this thing just came up. Look. This was him. They presented me this – this is off the record but – they presented me this. This was him. This was the Defense Department and him.”

The indictment includes ellipses where the recording obtained by CNN shows where Trump and his aide begin talking about Clinton’s emails and Weiner, whose laptop caused the FBI to briefly re-open its investigation into her handling of classified information in the days before the 2016 election she lost to Trump.

Trump then returns to the Iran document, according to the audio recording and indictment transcript.

“I was just thinking, because we were talking about it. And you know, he said, ‘He wanted to attack Iran, and what…,’ ” Trump says.

“These are the papers,” Trump continues, according to the audio file.

“This was done by the military and given to me,” Trump continues, before noting that the document remained classified.

“See as president I could have declassified it,” Trump says. “Now I can’t, you know, but this is still a secret.”

“Now we have a problem,” his staffer responds.

“Isn’t that interesting,” Trump says.

While that’s the last line included in the indictment, the audio recording obtained by CNN includes several additional lines from the conversation:

Trump: “It’s so cool. I mean, it’s so, look, her and I, and you probably almost didn’t believe me, but now you believe me.”

Writer: “No, I believed you.”

Trump: “It’s incredible, right?”

Writer: “No, they never met a war they didn’t want.”

Trump: “Hey, bring some, uh, bring some Cokes in please.”

Listen to the tape of Donald Trump admitting he was in possession of classified documents, knowing they were classified.


Trump All But Confesses to Mishandling Classified Docs on Fox News

Music Politics Shop TV & Movies Video & Photos (Sub)Culture RS Recommends Culture Council Rolling Stone MAGA Maniac Trump All But Confesses to Mishandling Classified Docs on Fox News The former president, facing charges of mishandling classified information, nearly confessed to the crime — while blaming his “golf shirts” by Miles Klee June 19, 2023 7:39PM EDT Getty Images Popular on Rolling Stone A week after his second post-presidential arrest, this one for his alleged mishandling of classified documents after leaving the White House, Donald Trump turned to Fox News host Bret Baier on Monday to make the case for why he should lead the country again. But he ended up essentially confessing to the crime of which he’s accused: stealing and sharing top-secret government information. Before that, however, Baier pressed Trump to explain why he kept the boxes of classified materials at Mar-a-Lago and refused to comply with government requests to return them, as described in his new felony indictment. In between dismissing the case as “the document hoax” or accusing other presidents of illegally hoarding their own sensitive documents, Trump offered the bizarre explanation that he couldn’t give up the boxes to authorities because they also contained… his clothes. “Like every other president I take things out,” Trump said. “In my case, I took it out pretty much in a hurry. People packed it up and left. I had clothing in there, I had all sorts of personal items in there. Much, much stuff.” After a brief digression to call his former attorney general Bill Barr a “coward,” Trump reiterated, “I have got a lot of things in there. I will go through those boxes. I have to go through those boxes. I take out personal things.” Finally, he clarified what those items were: “These boxes were interspersed with all sorts of things: golf shirts, clothing, pants, shoes, there were many things,” he said. While not wanting Dark Brandon to seize your golf shirts may prove a compelling argument in court, another of Trump’s evasions seems less likely to hold water. Baier also brought up one of the most damning parts of the federal indictment, a recording from July 2021 in which Trump is heard showing off a document detailing an attack plan against Iran, revealing that it’s still officially secret and he no longer has the power to declassify it. Trump blustered for a moment about what he actually said, then pivoted to the claim that he wasn’t even holding a particular document — despite corroborating testimony from others in the room when it happened. No wonder this guy’s lawyers keep quitting on him. Editor’s picks The 250 Greatest Guitarists of All Time The 100 Best Albums of 2023 The 50 Worst Decisions in Movie History All 243 of Taylor Swift’s Songs, Ranked See more There’s a lot going on here and this is going to reviewed: Trump on the recording of him pic.twitter.com/JpohMqb2Li — Acyn (@Acyn) June 19, 2023 “Bret, there was no document,” Trump insisted. “That was a massive amount of papers and everything else, talking about Iran and other things. And it may have been held up or may not. That was not a document. I didn’t have any document per se. There was nothing to declassify, these were newspaper stories, magazine stories, and articles.” When Baier referred again to the facts of the recording laid out in the indictment, Trump said, presumably of the prosecutors: “These people are very dishonest people, they are thugs.” He also suggested they could be “stuffing” the boxes with incriminating material. Trump’s answer immediately made waves, with even some of his frequent defenders suggesting the former president may have just undermined himself. On Twitter, Pro-Trump legal scholar Jonathan Turley praised Baier’s interview — and included an ominous warning for Trump: “Bret Baier conducted an extraordinary interview with Donald Trump who discussed the criminal allegations in detail. Statements of this kind are generally admissible at trial…” Later on in the interview, Trump and Baier got into a debate on the results of the 2020 election, with the Fox anchor trying in vain to remind the former president that he lost while Trump rambled on about fake ballots. The rest of the conversation involved Trump bashing Biden’s international diplomacy, from Ukraine to the Middle East to China, and musing about how much better things were with him in office. Afterward, Fox News chief political analyst Brit Hume said that Trump’s answers regarding matters of the law were “on the verge on incoherent,” and specifically mentioned the bizarre detail of not returning the boxes of classified documents because they hadn’t been “separated from his golf shirts or whatever he was saying.” Overall, Hume said, it sounded as if Trump was making the argument that the papers were his to do with as he liked, “which I don’t think is going to hold up in court.” Related Trump Could Tap Taylor Swift Conspiracy Theorist as Attorney General: Report Special Report with Bret Baier will air the second half of this interview on Tuesday evening. Will we learn more about the precious polos that Trump was shielding from government overreach? One can only hope. Trending Taylor Swift’s ‘Time’ Cover Is Breaking Far-Right Brains Inside Trump’s Plot to Corrupt the 2024 Election With ‘Garbage’ Data Texas Threatens Doctors After Judge Says Woman Can Get Emergency Abortion Multiple Women Accuse Popular Van Life Influencer of Unwanted Sexual Behavior Leave a Comment Share This © 2023 PMC. All rights reserved.

In Part 1 of a Fox News interview with Brett Baier, Donald Trump again claimed without evidence he won the 2020 election and, most importantly, tipped his hat to his legal defense… that the classified documents were not classified and the boxes were actually filled with his golf shirts… despite being on tape admitting he was holding classified documents in his hand, witnesses in attendance described the classified document Trump was holding, and saying he didn’t declassify the documents and knowing he couldn’t after he left office.


Trump rejected lawyers’ efforts to avoid classified documents indictment – The Washington Post

One of Donald Trump’s new attorneys proposed an idea in the fall of 2022: The former president’s team could try to arrange a settlement with the Justice Department.

The attorney, Christopher Kise, wanted to quietly approach Justice to see if he could negotiate a settlement that would preclude charges, hoping Attorney General Merrick Garland and the department would want an exit ramp to avoid prosecuting a former president. Kise would hopefully “take the temperature down,” he told others, by promising a professional approach and the return of all documents.

But Trump was not interested after listening to other lawyers who urged a more pugilistic approach, so Kise never approached prosecutors, three people briefed on the matter said. A special counsel was appointed months later.

Kise, a former solicitor general of Florida who was paid $3 million upfront to join Trump’s team last year, declined to comment.

That quiet entreaty last fall was one of many occasions when lawyers and advisers sought to get Trump to take a more cooperative stance in a bid to avoid what happened Friday. The Justice Department unsealed an indictment including more than three dozen criminal counts against Trump for allegedly keeping and hiding classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida.

Trump, 77, now faces the most legally perilous moment of his life playing out in a federal court — charges that could bring decades in prison. He pleaded not guilty in Miami on Tuesday and vowed to fight the charges.

“President Trump has consistently been in full compliance with the Presidential Records Act, which is the only law that applies to Presidents and their records,” Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said in a statement. “In the course of negotiations over the return of the documents, President Trump told the lead DOJ official, ‘anything you need from us, just let us know.’ Sadly, the weaponized DOJ rejected this offer of cooperation and conducted an unnecessary and unconstitutional raid on the President’s home in order to inflict maximum political damage on the leading presidential candidate.”

The PRA is not the only law applying to presidents and federal documents, as evidenced by the charges filed against Trump.

Since the National Archives first asked for the return of presidential documents in Trump’s possession in February 2021 and until a grand jury issued its indictment this month, Trump was repeatedly stubborn and eschewed opportunities to avoid criminal charges, according to people with knowledge of the case, many of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to reveal internal details. They note that Trump was not charged for any documents he returned voluntarily.

Interviews with seven Trump advisers with knowledge of the probe indicate he misled his own advisers, telling them the boxes contained only newspaper clippings and clothes. He repeatedly refused to give the documents back, even when some of his longest-serving advisers warned of peril and some flew to Mar-a-Lago to beg him to return them.

When Trump returned 15 boxes early last year — leaving at least 64 more at Mar-a-Lago — he told his own advisers to put out statements to the National Archives and to the public that “everything” had been returned, The Washington Post has previously reported. But he quietly kept more than 100 classified documents.

Later, facing a grand jury subpoena, the indictment alleges the former president worked quietly with an aide to move boxes without telling his own lawyers, leading to a false attestation that every document had been returned.

“It was a totally unforced error,” said one person close to Trump who has been part of dozens of discussions about the documents. “We didn’t have to be here.”

Trump time and again rejected the advice from lawyers and advisers who urged him to cooperate and instead took the advice of Tom Fitton, the head of the conservative group Judicial Watch, and a range of others who told him he could legally keep the documents and should fight the Justice Department, advisers said. Trump would often cite Fitton to others, and Fitton told some of Trump’s lawyers that Trump could keep the documents, even as they disagreed, the advisers said.

In an interview Wednesday, Fitton said he dined with Trump on Monday night at his club, eating filet mignon with the former president one day before his first court appearance on the document charges. “I saw him last night; he’s in a good mood. He’s serious and ready to fight under the law.”

Fitton, who appeared before the grand jury and was questioned about his role in both the Mar-a-Lago documents case and the investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, acknowledged he gave the advice to Trump but declined to discuss the details of their conversations. He added that he read the indictment and did not believe it laid out illegal or obstructive conduct. Multiple witnesses said they were asked about Fitton in front of a grand jury and the role he played in Trump’s decisions.


“I think what is lacking is the lawyers saying, ‘I took this to be obstruction,’” said Fitton. “Where is the conspiracy? I don’t understand any of it. I think this is a trap. They had no business asking for the records … and they’ve manufactured an obstruction charge out of that. There are core constitutional issues that the indictment avoids, and the obstruction charge seems weak to me.”

Several other Trump advisers blamed Fitton for convincing Trump that he could keep the documents and repeatedly mentioning the “Clinton socks case” — a reference to tapes Bill Clinton stored in his sock drawer of his secret interviews with historian Taylor Branch that served as the basis of Branch’s 2009 book documenting the Clinton presidency.

Judicial Watch lost a lawsuit in 2012 that demanded the audio recordings be designated as presidential records and that the National Archives take custody of the recordings. A court opinion issued at the time stated that there was no legal mechanism for the Archives to force Clinton to turn over the recordings.

For his part, Fitton said Trump’s lawyers “should have been more aggressive in fighting the subpoenas and fighting for Trump.”

Trump’s unwillingness to give the documents back did not surprise those who knew him well. Former White House chief of staff John F. Kelly said that he was particularly unlikely to heed requests from people or agencies he disliked.

“He’s incapable of admitting wrongdoing. He wanted to keep it, and he says, ‘You’re not going to tell me what to do. I’m the smartest guy in the room,’” Kelly said Tuesday.

Other advisers said the FBI and National Archives wanting the documents so badly made Trump less likely to give them back.

Trump’s chances to avoid charges began in early 2021, according to current and former advisers. After Gary Stern, counsel at the National Archives, asked Trump’s team for the return of documents, some of his lawyers and advisers began advising him to return them. National Archives officials were privately baffled at what they viewed as inexplicably recalcitrant behavior and kept asking for answers to no avail.

In the fall of 2021, Alex Cannon, then a Trump attorney, urged the former president to return documents to the National Archives, repeatedly telling him that he was required to give them back, according to people familiar with the matter.

After months of talking to Trump and his staff, Cannon — referred to in the indictment as a “Trump Representative” — told Trump that the National Archives was threatening to go to Congress or to the Department of Justice if he did not return the documents, the people said.

“It’s mine,” Trump said, explaining why he did not want to give the materials back, according to people with knowledge of his comments.

That threat prompted Trump to eventually begin looking through some of his boxes — or “my papers” as he called them, according to text messages listed in the indictment sent by former assistant Molly Michael. He eventually returned 15 boxes of materials to the National Archives, in January 2022.

That was followed by Trump directing his lawyer and his spokesman to put out statements saying he had returned “everything” — which they declined to do. That episode became of interest to federal prosecutors, according to four people with knowledge of the matter.

After the National Archives in February found reams of classified material and disorganized boxes in February 2022, they referred the matter to the Justice Department for a potential investigation. Archives officials did not believe everything had been properly returned, The Post has reported.

They were right.

Trump had kept at least 64 boxes of documents, according to the indictment. Trump never believed that his home would be searched and thought that he would be able to keep the documents, two advisers said.

After being initially reluctant to be drawn into what they viewed as a dispute between the Archives and Trump, the Justice Department opened an investigation in April 2022 and sent a subpoena asking for all classified documents in May.

Meanwhile, Trump grew angry with his lawyers and chose new lawyers, bringing in Evan Corcoran to handle the matter at the recommendation of adviser Boris Epshteyn.

Shortly after the subpoena arrived, the indictment says, Corcoran and another lawyer met with Trump at Mar-a-Lago and told him he needed to comply. The indictment says Trump told the other lawyer not to return for the search of his property.

According to testimony Corcoran gave, he was encouraged by Trump to stonewall or not comply with the subpoena. Trump even suggested any “bad” documents could be plucked out of the file after Corcoran searched a storage room, according to the indictment.

“I really don’t want anybody looking through my boxes, I really don’t, I don’t want you looking through my boxes,” he said, according to Corcoran, as cited in the indictment. Trump also said, per the lawyer: “Well, what if we, what happens if we just don’t respond at all or don’t play ball with them?” and “Wouldn’t it be better if we just told them we don’t have anything there?”

But all the documents were not in the storage room, because the indictment alleges Trump and personal aide Walt Nauta moved some boxes without telling Corcoran. Nauta later helped pack some of the boxes to fly them from Mar-a-Lago to Bedminster, leading to a false attestation that everything had been returned, the indictment says.

A lawyer for Corcoran declined to comment on his testimony. A lawyer for Nauta, who is also charged in the indictment, declined to comment.

Kise, who originally urged a more cooperative approach, told others when he took the case that he believed that charges could be avoided. He began asking other advisers what happened during the subpoena process in an effort to understand why the Justice Department would take such an extraordinary step of searching the former president’s property.

Kise has largely been away from the documents case publicly in recent months as other lawyers pursued a more aggressive strategy, and Trump advisers say other lawyers badmouthed Kise to Trump.

In recent days, Kise was responsible for helping Trump find new lawyers in Florida — tapping his deep Rolodex in the state in a bid to find someone who’d be willing to work for Trump. In court on Tuesday in Miami, Kise was seated next to Trump as he was arraigned for 37 felony charges.

The latest: U.S. District Judge Aileen M. Cannon overseeing Donald Trump’s classified documents case suggested that she might delay the planned scheduled, which includes a trial in May 2024.

The case: The criminal investigation looks into whether Trump took government secrets with him after he left the White House and obstructed a subsequent investigation. Trump has pleaded not guilty. Here’s what to know about the classified documents case.

The charges: Trump faces 40 separate charges in the documents case. Read the full text of the superseding indictment against Trump and our top takeaways from the indictment.

Can Trump still run for president? While it has never been attempted by a candidate from a major party before, Trump is allowed to run for president while under indictment in four separate cases — or even if he is convicted of a crime. Here’s how Trump’s indictment could impact the 2024 election.

@[100044274887410:2048:Donald J. Trump] rejected pleas from his D-level lawyers several times to quietly return the classified documents he stole, but instead opted to listen to the legal advice of not-a-lawyer @[2517459524978538:274:Tom Fitton] who runs the far-right group @[100064539227808:2048:Judicial Watch].

This is amazing because Judicial Watch was formed by Fitton to stop every probable policy of the @[100044322825129:2048:Barack Obama] administration, with occasional success, and transformed into a MAGA/QAnon/antivaxxer/anti-LGBTQ group. And now because of Tom Fitton, Donald Trump may spend the rest of his life in jail.


Trump lawyers quit classified documents case

Two lawyers who represented Donald Trump in the months before the former president was indicted on federal charges over his handling of classified documents quit working for him Friday morning.

The attorneys, Jim Trusty and John Rowley, did not explain in detail why they had resigned, other than to say in a joint statement that “this is a logical moment” to do so given his indictment Thursday in U.S. District Court in Miami.

Trusty and Rowley also said they will no longer represent Trump in a pending federal criminal probe into his efforts to overturn his loss in the 2020 election to President Joe Biden.

Trusty had made multiple appearances on television news shows Thursday evening and Friday morning to discuss the indictment of Trump in his capacity as his lawyer.

Follow our live coverage of Donald Trump’s indictment in the classified documents case.

Trump first announced the two lawyers were leaving his cases in a post on his Truth Social platform.

He said he would now be represented by Todd Blanche, a New York lawyer who is representing him in another criminal case in Manhattan Supreme Court.

Trump is charged there in a state grand jury indictment with falsifying business records related to a hush money payment to porn star Stormy Daniels shortly before the 2016 presidential election.

He has pleaded not guilty in that case.

“We will be announcing additional lawyers in the coming days,” wrote Trump, who is due to appear Tuesday in Miami court on the indictment charging him with several crimes.

Blanche did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment.

Trump is charged over his retention of hundreds of classified government documents at his residence at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida, after he left the White House, as well as with obstruction for his failure to return those records in the face of demands from U.S. officials.

In a joint statement, Trusty and Rowley wrote: “This morning we tendered our resignations as counsel to President Trump, and we will no longer represent him on either the indicted case or the January 6 investigation.”

“It has been an honor to have spent the last year defending him, and we know he will be vindicated in his battle against the Biden Administration’s partisan weaponization of the American justice system,” the attorneys said.

“Now that the case has been filed in Miami, this is a logical moment for us to step aside and let others carry the cases through to completion,” they wrote. “We have no plans to hold media appearances that address our withdrawals or any other confidential communications we’ve had with the President or his legal team.

Donald Trump needs to find new lawyers after his quit after being indicted.


Trump indicted in classified documents case

Former President Donald Trump has been indicted on seven federal criminal charges in connection with hundreds of classified government documents he retained at his Florida home after leaving the White House.

Trump himself disclosed the indictment in a series of posts on his Truth Social social media site on Thursday evening. He also said he has been summoned to appear in court in Miami on Tuesday.

NBC News soon after confirmed the indictment, which is the second time in recent months that Trump has been criminally charged. He remains under criminal investigation by the Department of Justice and a Georgia state prosecutor for his efforts to reverse his loss to President Joe Biden in the 2020 election.

Follow our live coverage of Donald Trump’s indictment in the classified documents case.

Trump’s attorney, James Trusty, in an interview with CNN, said the charges include false statements, conspiracy to obstruct and willfully retaining documents in violation of the Espionage Act. Those charges carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison if Trump is convicted, though the actual sentence would likely be lower because of federal sentencing guidelines.

Trump, who is seeking the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, is the only U.S. president, former or otherwise, ever to be criminally charged. A Trump political action committee immediately began fundraising off news about the latest indictment.

He was first indicted by a New York state grand jury in March on charges of falsifying business records in connection with a hush money payment to a porn star in 2016.

In a video statement Thursday, Trump called the new charges “election interference at the highest level.”

On Truth Social, Trump wrote, “I never thought it possible that such a thing could happen to a former President of the United States.”

“I AM AN INNOCENT MAN! This is indeed a DARK DAY for the United States of America,” he wrote.

A U.S. Secret Service official told NBC News that agency brass will meet with Trump’s staff on Friday and begin security and logistics planning for his appearance in a Miami court Tuesday.

Trump has been the focus of a federal criminal investigation since last year over his stonewalling of requests to return government records, including classified documents, after ending his term as president. By law, such records must be returned when a president leaves office.

Last August, FBI agents raided Trump’s home at his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida, searching for records they believed would be there.

Agents found hundreds of documents marked classified, along with many more government records that he had been obligated to return.

A spokesman for special counsel Jack Smith, who has been leading the investigation for the Department of Justice, declined to comment to NBC News on Thursday.

Trump, who most recently has been living at his residence in Bedminster, New Jersey, in his social media posts wrote, “The corrupt Biden Administration has informed my attorneys that I have been Indicted, seemingly over the Boxes Hoax.”

He griped that Biden had not been charged despite the fact that a number of government documents, some of which were classified, had been found at locations where Biden lived or worked as a private citizen.

Biden is the subject of an inquiry by another special counsel over those documents. But legal analysts have said his situation is different from that of Trump because of Trump’s failure to return government records despite repeated requests that he do so by U.S. officials.

A White House spokesman declined to comment to NBC News. He referred that query to the Department of Justice, “which conducts its criminal investigations independently.” 

Until this week, it was publicly known only that a grand jury in federal court in Washington, D.C., was hearing testimony and reviewing evidence related to the documents investigation of Trump, while a separate grand jury in the same courthouse investigated his attempt to overturn the 2020 election results.

But earlier this week it was revealed that another grand jury in U.S. District Court in Miami also had been collecting evidence in the documents probe. That disclosure raised the prospect that Trump would be criminally charged in Florida, not in Washington.

Trump has long maintained a home in Florida, which in recent election cycles has been won by him and by Republican candidates for governor and senator.

The state’s current governor, Ron DeSantis, is running against Trump for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination.

Trump’s lawyers met with DOJ officials, including Smith, in Washington on Monday, reportedly to argue that Trump should not be indicted.

On Wednesday, a top Trump aide, Taylor Budowich, testified before the grand jury in Miami. Later that same day, NBC News and other media outlets reported that Trump had been formally notified that he was a target of the criminal probe, a step typically taken shortly before a person is indicted.

@[100044274887410:2048:Donald J. Trump] indicted with seven counts over his stolen classified documents case.