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Trump: I could declassify documents by thinking about it

Cope

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No one has to believe anything uttered without evidence. Donnie is a private citizen, and his statements must be afforded the same benefit of the doubt as statements by any other person under investigation or at trial. No court is required to believe it, and no jury.

What the court, DoJ, a jury, and/or the public are at least in principle required to do is evaluate baseless, evidence free, after the fact, self serving statements based on all the evidence available to them/us. There is none for the proposition that Trump declassified any document in his mind, ever, nor can there be.

He was in possession of documents marked classified. That's prima facie evidence of their current classification. The USG, i.e. Biden, determines whether the content is still classified and at what level. If Donnie wants to rebut that evidence, the burden is his. It cannot possibly be the burden of the DoJ or the USG more broadly to prove a negative, that Donnie did NOT declassify it. It's an impossible burden and not needed.
Pretty much what I posted responding to WW is the same as I would say to you.

When you have the presumption of innocence, without evidence that you are lying, that you are speaking truth is supposed to be the standard.
He doesn't need to do anything to prove what he claims under oath, just claim it under oath.

Now, if/when he does that, they can certainly attempt to prove that he is lying (and likely could)
 

Cope

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Makes no difference. Trump does not have unlimited access to anything he desires; neither as POTUS nor now. He was not trained in document classification or declassification by the DoE, and as a private citizen he has no right to retain government property; crucially, sensitive Top Secret and above materials. The law is unambiguous on this.
I really wish the goal posts would stay in the same place.

When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

If that tid bit doesn't matter to you, then stop responding and failing to prove it is untrue.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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It’s just comic book shit. Real people have to document declassifying documents.
This a mental health issue. An epidemic of gullible.
Or maybe it's simply Brandolini's Law (also known as the bullshit asymmetry principle, is an internet adage that emphasizes the effort of debunking misinformation, in comparison to the relative ease of creating it in the first place. It states that "The amount of energy needed to refute bullshit is an order of magnitude bigger than that needed to produce it.") in action.
 

WorldWatcher

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I really wish the goal posts would stay in the same place.

When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

If that tid bit doesn't matter to you, then stop responding and failing to prove it is untrue.

See that is the fine point that some (not saying you) are not getting.

The arguments ISN'T that the President can't declassify things. The argument is must the President tell someone that a specific item is declassified. They attempt to obfuscate the discussion so that it about **CAN** he instead of **DID** he. A very important distinction.

The problem with the secret and mental only declassification claim is some think it is the document that is classified, which isn't really true. It is the information that is classified. The document is just the paper it's printed on.

So take for example a classified document that exists in 6 copies: 1 at the White House and 5 distributed to the various source agencies that need the information. If the President declassified information, then there HAS to be a means of conveying that information to the other holders so that the information is treated the same by each. On the other hand if the position is that the document can be declassified without addressing the information you have one copy of the document at the White House that is declassified and 5 copies in other agencies that are still classified because they (the agencies) are never told to declassify them.

So no the real classification level depends on which copy of the document is viewed which is no way that the classified system can work.
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To put it a little more humorously...

If a bear shits in the woods and no one is around, do we really know the bear shit in the woods? Well yes, there is a pile of shit as evidence.

On the other hand...

If a President secretly and mentally declassifies something and doesn't tell anyone (either verbally or in writing) that something was declassified, was it really declassified? That is an open legal question, but a factor in that determination will be how to the POTUS (who becomes the FPOTUS) handle the information.


WW
 
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Cope

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See that is the fine point that some (not saying you) are not getting.

The arguments ISN'T that the President can declassify things. The argument is must the President tell someone that a specific item is declassified. They attempt obfuscate the discussion so that it about **CAN** he instead of **DID** he. A very important distinction.

The problem with the secret and mental only declassification claim is some think it is the document that is classified, which isn't really true. It is the information that is classified. The document is just the paper it's printed on.

So take for example a classified document that exists in 6 copies: 1 at the White House and 5 distributed to the various source agencies that need the information. If the President declassified information, then there HAS to be a means of conveying that information to the other holders so that the information is treated the same by each. On the other hand if the position is that the document can be declassified without addressing the information you have one copy of the document at the White House that is declassified and 5 copies in other agencies that are still classified because they (the agencies) are never told to declassify them.

So no the real classification level depends on which copy of the document is viewed which is no way that the classified system can work.
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To put it a little more humorously...

If a bear shits in the woods and no one is around, do we really know the bear shit in the woods? Well yes, there is a pile of shit as evidence.

On the other hand...

If a President secretly and mentally declassifies something and doesn't tell anyone (either verbally or in writing) that something was declassified, was it really declassified? That is an open legal question, but a factor in that determination will be how to the POTUS (who because the FPOTUS) handle the information.


WW
Again, I don't disagree with what you've posted.
I think if he does make that claim in court that it very likely fails upon cross, and with testimony from anyone and everyone who worked under him.
But I haven't made that claim.

The claim I made was that sans cross, if he claims that he de-classified them under oath, the Jury and the Judge are supposed to believe him (in the absence of contrary information)
 

WorldWatcher

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Again, I don't disagree with what you've posted.
I think if he does make that claim in court that it very likely fails upon cross, and with testimony from anyone and everyone who worked under him.
But I haven't made that claim.

The claim I made was that sans cross, if he claims that he de-classified them under oath, the Jury and the Judge are supposed to believe him (in the absence of contrary information)

And as previously pointed out. There is no "supposed to believe him", the choice to believe or not believe is up to the Jury and how they view the reliability and truthfulness of the testimony.

WW
 

mike2810

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I really wish the goal posts would stay in the same place.

When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

If that tid bit doesn't matter to you, then stop responding and failing to prove it is untrue.

yes, it is true the President has the authority to declassify documents.

Here is my rub with Trump. His management skills. He claims he declassified the documents but did not tell anyone on what he did. Another person comes along after Trump is out of Office or even still in Office and looks at a document "classified top/secret". How is that person to know or NARA to know that is now a declassified document?

Very poor office management skills. No wonder some of Trump's business failed.
 
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TU Curmudgeon

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Pretty much what I posted responding to WW is the same as I would say to you.

When you have the presumption of innocence, without evidence that you are lying, that you are speaking truth is supposed to be the standard.
Unfortunately for your position, that is not the case.

The trier of fact gets to assess what you say with respect to the amount of credibility that they assess you as having.

If the police are informed that you have large quantities of narcotics in your home, get a search warrant, search your home, and find a large quantity of narcotics BUT do not know how those narcotics came to be in your home, AND if you say that they were hidden there without your knowledge by the lizard people from Venus, the trier of fact is NOT required to believe that you are "speaking the truth" simply because the police/prosecution cannot prove how the narcotics came to be in your house.
He doesn't need to do anything to prove what he claims under oath, just claim it under oath.
Indeed, and the trier of fact is completely free to assess that testimony as "nothing but a pack of damn self-serving lies that only a fool would believe, that only an idiot would expect anyone to believe, and that only someone who was guilty would spout".
Now, if/when he does that, they can certainly attempt to prove that he is lying (and likely could)
It is very difficult to disprove "I thought about declassifying them." isn't it?

At that point it would be up to Mr. Trump to prove the "affirmative defence" that the documents were no longer classified.

Regardless of whether or not the documents were classified, it is up to Mr. Trump to prove the "affirmative defence" that the documents were no longer the property of the US government.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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I really wish the goal posts would stay in the same place.

When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

If that tid bit doesn't matter to you, then stop responding and failing to prove it is untrue.
Correction, the President has unilateral power to order that documents be declassified and the President has the unilateral power to release the contents of classified documents. The President does NOT have the ability to actually complete any declassification that they order. No document is actually declassified until the set declassification process has been completed.
 

Cope

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Unfortunately for your position, that is not the case.

The trier of fact gets to assess what you say with respect to the amount of credibility that they assess you as having.

If the police are informed that you have large quantities of narcotics in your home, get a search warrant, search your home, and find a large quantity of narcotics BUT do not know how those narcotics came to be in your home, AND if you say that they were hidden there without your knowledge by the lizard people from Venus, the trier of fact is NOT required to believe that you are "speaking the truth" simply because the police/prosecution cannot prove how the narcotics came to be in your house.
That isn't an absence of evidence though, is it?
Indeed, and the trier of fact is completely free to assess that testimony as "nothing but a pack of damn self-serving lies that only a fool would believe, that only an idiot would expect anyone to believe, and that only someone who was guilty would spout".
Without evidence, how many times do you find people convicted of the charge?
It is very difficult to disprove "I thought about declassifying them." isn't it?
Most assuredly it would be hard if he had to prove it.
At that point it would be up to Mr. Trump to prove the "affirmative defence" that the documents were no longer classified.
That would start off by being his claim, and without evidence to the contrary is supposed to be believed.
Regardless of whether or not the documents were classified, it is up to Mr. Trump to prove the "affirmative defence" that the documents were no longer the property of the US government.
He cannot unless the Special Master comes back with his affirmative defense classifying those docs as FPOTUS's.
 

Tbird19482

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I really wish the goal posts would stay in the same place.

When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

If that tid bit doesn't matter to you, then stop responding and failing to prove it is untrue.
From what I read in a lot of these threads is not many people are disputing that he HAD the authority to classify / declassify anything he wants when he WAS President , what is being disputed is he can NOT just "THINK " he declassified thousands of classified documents in his mind and NOT at least tell somebody or document it when he did it,
and people want to know how he can declassify thousands of documents without even knowing what is in them and that is what Trump is saying he did,
TRUMP had thousands of GOVERNMENT documents at MAL classified and Unclassified that are NOT his personal property and HE AND his lawyers told the government they were ALL returned
Have a nice day
 

WorldWatcher

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He cannot unless the Special Master comes back with his affirmative defense classifying those docs as FPOTUS's.

Classified documents are the property of the United State Government, there is no way the Special Master comes back and says that that classified documents are the personal property of the FPOTUS.

Even then the Special Master will classify documents as "Presidential Records" (government property) and "Personal Records" (property of DJT). That of course will under he definitions of the law contained in the Presidential Records Act of 1978. Of course there will be designations as attorney/client, but that is a separate issue.

Personal Records and Presidential Records have very specific definitions under the PRA of 1978.

1664204771197.png

WW
 

Cope

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Classified documents are the property of the United State Government, there is no way the Special Master comes back and says that that classified documents are the personal property of the FPOTUS.

Even then the Special Master will classify documents as "Presidential Records" (government property) and "Personal Records" (property of DJT). That of course will under he definitions of the law contained in the Presidential Records Act of 1978. Of course there will be designations as attorney/client, but that is a separate issue.

Personal Records and Presidential Records have very specific definitions under the PRA of 1978.

View attachment 67415098

WW
Again, no argument.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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That isn't an absence of evidence though, is it?
There is absolutely no evidence found as to how the narcotics got into the residence.
Without evidence, how many times do you find people convicted of the charge?
To answer your question the way I think that you meant it - I can recall several where the evidence was much less than overwhelming. One in particular involved an individual who was observed seemingly removing a food item from a display case then walking down a store aisle. No one else was in that aisle and no one saw what the individual did whilst in the aisle. The discarded wrapping from the food item was discovered concealed in the aisle. The individual was convicted of stealing the food item.

However, to answer the question as you actually asked it - I have never seen someone even charged with an offence if there was NO evidence whatsoever.
Most assuredly it would be hard if he had to prove it.
Actually the testimony would be "undisputed" and "if believed would have to be accepted".
That would start off by being his claim, and without evidence to the contrary is supposed to be believed.
Nope. When an "affirmative defence" is advanced, then it is up to the Defendant to establish it. There is NO requirement that it be believed without any evidence whatsoever.
He cannot unless the Special Master comes back with his affirmative defense classifying those docs as FPOTUS's.
Not quite correct. The Special Master would have to ACCEPT that Mr. Trump has PROVEN his "affirmative defence" (and not just that Mr. Trump might have a valid position). To prove that the documents (which are all clearly marked as belonging to the government of the United States of America) Mr. Trump would have to produce some evidence of an actual transfer of title of the documents.

To accept that the President of the United States of America could change the ownership of something from "The United States of America" to "John Bloggins, private citizen" WITHOUT any documentation (or even notification) of that change in ownership would mean that the President of the United States of America could change the ownership of all of the -nuclear weapons- National Parks of the United States of America from the United States of America to "John Bloggins, private citizen" AND could do so without any purchase consideration passing.
 

Davin

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Get the rubbers ready.

It’s time for a bounce-back.

And just like other trump supporters when you can’t refute the truth you post idiotic videos that have nothing to do with what I said. I accept your concession that you can’t refute anything I’ve said.
 

TomFitz

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And just like other trump supporters when you can’t refute the truth you post idiotic videos that have nothing to do with what I said. I accept your concession that you can’t refute anything I’ve said.

You could toss in wasting time on another one of their fuhrer’s BS.

His lawyers aren’t making the claims he tells Sham Hamitty.

He did it. He got caught. Red handed.

The only real question is whether or not to indict him.
 

Rich2018

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When he was President, he had UNILATERAL (look that up if you need to), power to de-classify anything he wished to, however he wished to.

Right on the former, wrong on the latter

Not even the president can declassify information "however he wished to"
There is a process, with an audit trail

And Trump did not adhere to it. Not one bit

Trump has a criminal contempt for the law and rules.
 

Cope

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Right on the former, wrong on the latter

Not even the president can declassify information "however he wished to"
There is a process, with an audit trail
Mind showing me where the Preisdent is bound by any of that 'audit trail"? Perhaps you can bring up the many procedural laws and processes that pertain to the subordinates to the President? Show me one thing that pertains to the President, please.
And Trump did not adhere to it. Not one bit
He had nothing to tell him he had to.
Trump has a criminal contempt for the law and rules.
I don't disagree.
 

Anthony60

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So, the investigators, prosecutors, Attorney General, and the judges... all in on it? All knowingly breaking their oaths?
You are kidding, right? Most Democrats break their oath of office on day one. Another thing they don't care about.
 

Anthony60

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Joe Biden at the moment and at the time of Trump's investigation.

A former president and private citizen like Trump has no constitutional writ to suddenly retroactively claim what he did in office a couple years ago when there is no record of it and have that covered under 'executive powers'.

It's a bit late to shoehorn that in now.
Oh, please. What a ridiculous non argument.
 
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