Trump responds to classified docs indictment

(CNN) An initial trial date has been set in the federal criminal trial of former President Trump for allegedly mishandling classified documents.

Judge Aileen Cannon has put the case on a speedy track with a trial date set for mid-August, right before the first Republican presidential debate.

Meanwhile, Trump’s campaign for president continues unabated and his frequent comments about the case could be used by the prosecution.

The former president answered questions in his first TV interview since he was indicted on 37 federal charges including conspiracy and retaining national defense information.

Fox News host Bret Baier asked Trump, “Why did you have this very sensitive national security defense documents?”

Trump responded, “In my case, I took things out in a hurry and people packed it up and we left. I had clothing in there. I had all sorts of personal items in there, much much stuff. I have every right to have those boxes. This is purely a Presidential Records Act. This is not a criminal thing.”

Trump’s claims are untrue. He is being charged criminally with Florida Federal Judge Aileen Cannon setting a tentative but swift schedule, asking for pre-trial motions to be submitted by the end of next month with a trial date in Fort Pierce, Florida set for August 14th.

That date, though, will likely change, with Judge Cannon noting the parties could push back the trial start date because of the “complexity of the case” and issues related to “classified information.”

When Baier asked Trump about the Iran attack plan document he allegedly had, the former president said, “Ready? It wasn’t a document.”

Trump denied news reports that he flaunted documents he knew were classified related to Iran in the summer of 2021 at his Bedminster Golf Club in New Jersey even though — according to the indictment — he was captured in an audio recording admitting that the material was “highly confidential” and that it was still classified. Now he’s insisting all he ever had were newspaper clippings.

“These boxes were interspersed with all sorts of things,” he said. “Golf shirts, clothing, pants, shoes, there were many things I would say….”

Baier pressed the former president. “Iran war plans?”

“Not that I know of, not that I know of,” he said. “There was no document, it was a massive amount of papers and everything else talking about Iran and other things and it may have been held up or it may have not. But that wasn’t a document, I didn’t have any document per se, there was nothing to declassify. These were newspapers, magazines and articles.”

All of these statements from Trump post-indictment could be admissible during his upcoming trial, but Trump continues to brush off the broad implications of his criminal charges.

“So you’re not worried about this case?” Baier asked.

“Based on the law, zero. Zero.”

Trump is taking fire from many of his former allies, including former Attorney General Bill Barr.

Barr wrote in an op-ed that if the facts laid out in the indictment are true, Trump’s actions amount to “brazen criminal conduct that cannot be justified in any way.”

Barr has denounced Trump’s actions before.

He resigned as attorney general in late 2020 just weeks before the January 6th Capitol breach.

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