Highly confidential, secret’ documents were discussed by Trump on tape
US media have obtained an audio recording in which Donald Trump appears to admit to keeping a secret document after leaving the White House.
In a 2021 audio recording, former president Donald Trump can be heard showing and discussing what he refers to as “highly confidential, secret” documents with a writer and aides. He says this is “off the record.”
“It’s kind of secret and highly confidential. This information is classified. Look at this, people. You attack, then. Trump can be heard saying just before someone else speaks. Other news organisations have also obtained the audio, which was initially obtained by CNN.
In the indictment of President Trump and a close associate, Walt Nauta, on a total of 37 counts relating to alleged improper handling of classified documents, special counsel Jack Smith cited the July 2021 recording of a meeting at Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey. On June 14, Trump pleaded not guilty to the charges, and Nauta is anticipated to enter a similar plea at a hearing on Tuesday.
If the documents mentioned in the recording were found by investigators is unclear from the indictment.
The audio shows Trump saying “these are the papers” and describing them as an attack strategy against Iran. The conversation was about two hours long but is only shown for about two minutes. On the tape, Trump is heard saying. The audio seems to support those reports’ accuracy.
As he discusses the documents, you can also hear the sounds of papers being shuffled.
“See, I could have declassified when I was president, but I can’t now, you know. Trump can be heard saying, “But this is classic. That’s fascinating, isn’t it? It’s really cool.
The special counsel stayed silent when news of the tape’s existence first broke in May.
The former Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows was writing a memoir, and Trump is heard speaking with Meadows’ aides in the recording.
The group was “a writer, a publisher, and two members of” Trump’s staff, according to the indictment, and “none of whom possessed a security clearance.” Trump allegedly refers to a “plan of attack” that the Department of Defence and a senior military official prepared for him, according to the indictment.
Trump claimed on social media that Smith had “illegally leaked and’spun’ a tape and transcript of me that is actually an exoneration, rather than what they would have you believe” after the audio had been made public by news organisations.
In a June 19 Fox News interview, Trump asserted that no top-secret materials were present when the recording was made.
“No document was present. There were a tonne of publications and other materials discussing Iran and other topics, according to Trump. And while it might or might not have been delayed, that was not a document. I didn’t actually have a document. Nothing needed to be declassified. These were articles, magazine articles, and newspaper stories.
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The case’s trial was originally scheduled to begin on August 14 but, on June 23, the special counsel asked that it be postponed until December 11. The special counsel claimed that many of the security clearances required to view the case’s evidence have not yet been obtained by Trump’s legal team.
On that motion, a judge has not made a decision.