Trump makes new bid to block records from Capitol riot probe before Friday deadline

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  • Former President Donald Trump asked a federal appeals court to temporarily halt the release of White House records to lawmakers investigating the January 6 Capitol attack.
  • Those records are due to be released Friday evening.
  • The House committee and the National Archives do not oppose that request, Trump’s attorney Jesse Binnell told the appeals court.

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Former President Donald Trump asked a federal appeals court on Thursday to block the release of White House records to lawmakers investigating the deadly Capitol invasion, just a day before those records were distributed.

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The request for a “brief” administrative injunction is the latest step in Trump’s efforts to block the National Archives from handing over documents to the House Select Committee probing the January 6 attack.

Trump, who has never accepted President Joe Biden and is indicating he will run for president again in 2024, was impeached in the House for inciting a rebellion. An invasion of the Capitol by a crowd of hundreds of Trump supporters forced members of Congress to flee their chambers during a joint session, temporarily derailing Biden’s efforts to confirm his Electoral College victory.

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Trump’s attorney told the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit that US Archivist David Ferreiro is scheduled to begin production of the disputed documents Friday at 6 p.m. ET. The attorney, Jesse Binnell, is asking the DC Circuit to stop the release of the records while the court considers another injunction on a fast-track basis.

“Simply put, it seeks only a brief pause in presenting the motion; it will not prejudicially affect other arguments or requests to be made by the parties in this important appeal,” Binnell wrote to the appeals court.

The House Committee and the National Archives do not oppose the administrative injunction request, Binnell wrote.

The emergency request in the appeals court came after Federal Judge Tanya Chutkan dismissed multiple attempts by Trump’s attorney to block the transfer of records to a January 6 panel.

The bipartisan select committee is seeking a wide range of records from Trump’s tenure in the White House, including communications about strategies to reverse Biden’s victory in the 2020 election. Judges dismissed the results of dozens of Trump campaign lawsuits challenging the state level.

In mid-October Trump sued the bipartisan select committee in US District Court in Washington, as well as the National Archives and Records Association, to block the release of those records.

Binnell argued that many of them should be withheld because they are protected by executive privilege, the principle that allows certain executive branch communications to be kept confidential. But Biden refused to apply the privilege to the disputed documents.

Chutkan ruled against Trump Tuesday night, writing that his view “appears to be based on the assumption that his executive power ‘permanently exists’ … but the president is not the king, and the plaintiffs are not the president.” “

Trump filed a notice of appeal to the DC Circuit in less than an hour.

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

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