OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
A court filing by special counsel Jack Smith’s team last week provided a big update on former President Donald Trump’s classified documents case, as the filing noted that the Washington, D.C., grand jury has finished its work.
“The disclosure of the grand jury’s completion on Aug. 17 was tucked into a footnote of a larger filing Smith’s lawyers submitted to the federal judge in South Florida who is now overseeing the indictment against the former president and co-defendants Walt Nauta and Carlos de Oliveira,” The Messenger reported.
Last month, the federal judge overseeing the case, Aileen Cannon, invalidated two of Smith’s sealed filings.
Kyle Cheney, a senior legal correspondent for POLITICO, wrote via X (Twitter): “Judge CANNON comes out swinging at special counsel this morning, striking two of prosecutors’ sealed filings and demanding an explanation of ‘the legal propriety of using an out-of-district grand jury proceeding to continue to investigate’ the docs case.”
Cannon, a Trump appointee, wrote that “The Special Counsel states in conclusory terms that the supplement should be sealed from public view ‘to comport with grand jury secrecy,’ but the motion for leave and the supplement plainly fail to satisfy the burden of establishing a sufficient legal or factual basis to warrant sealing the motion and supplement.”
She then denied the motion by the prosecution.
“Among other topics as raised in the Motion, the response shall address the legal propriety of using an out-of-district grand jury proceeding to continue to investigate and/or to seek post-indictment hearings on matters pertinent to the instant indicted matter in this district,” she wrote, giving Smith’s team a deadline of late last month to respond.
Fox News personality and a top conservative radio host, Mark Levin, lashed out at Smith during a TV segment earlier this week, calling him a political “hit man.”
“There’s a lot that has been said about these new indictments that have been brought against President Trump, a superseding list of indictments, and I want to get into this so-called superseding list a little bit later,” he began. “But that said, what everybody is missing here is President Trump didn’t delete a single video. How do I know that? I read this indictment.
“He is charged with trying to get employees to delete videos and attempted to delete Mar-a-Lago security footage sought by the grand jury investigating the mishandling of government records,” Levin continued.
“I want to get into that in a second, but before I do, I want you to look at this chart to demonstrate to you that when Merrick Garland said we’re going to have a special counsel, the purpose of a special counsel is to have a prosecutor who is outside main justice, to bring in fresh faces, fresh blood so you don’t have a conflict of interest or an appearance of a conflict of interest,” he said.
“And I want to get into this, who is Jack Smith? He was chief of the Public Integrity Section from 2010 to 2015. Who did you report to ultimately? Eric Holder, and you’re going to see Eric Holder has a lot to do with a lot of the people who are now involved in hunting down Donald Trump. Smith was part of the failed — ultimately — prosecutions of Governor McDonnell, of Senator Menendez, of Senator Edwards,” Levin noted further.
“He worked with FBI Director James Comey as head of the Public Integrity Section. He worked with FBI general counsel Andrew Weissmann, who you’re quite familiar with as head of the Public Integrity Section. Does he sound like a man who is independent from the Department of Justice? Does it sound like a man who is independent from the Democratic Party?” Levin asked.
Levin declared: “Out of all the people they could have chosen in America, they go to The Hague to bring back Smith because he’s a hitman. These people coming out of main justice, the U.S. Attorney’s office, mostly Democrats, Democrat operatives, they’ve known each other for decades.”