The Democratic chairs of the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Carolyn Maloney, and the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, are urgently requesting that Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines conduct an “immediate review & damage assessment” after the discovery of classified national security documents at the Mar-a-Lago residence of former president Donald Trump.
Citing a “potential violation of the Presidential Records Act and law protecting national security, including the Espionage act,” Maloney and Schiff express their deep concern about the “grave risk” engendered by Trump’s possession of “the most sensitive and highly protected information in the U.S. Government.”
In a three-page official letter written to Haines, the two top congressional Democrats outline the details of the FBI’s search and the results of what their hunt discovered, most notably “highly classified documents ‘relating to nuclear weapons,’ which are among our nation’s most closely guarded secrets.”
Indeed, the documents are so sensitive that reports are emerging that the FBI is desperate to discover who may have actually even touched them.
CNN analyst says the intel Trump stole are so sensitive that FBI agents will begin FINGER PRINTING each document to find out who actually touched them.
— Brian McBride (@BrianDMcBride) August 12, 2022
Representatives Maloney and Schiff go on in their letter to note that Trump is suspected of having “repeatedly
attempted to destroy presidential records,” and remind DNI Haines that “under Intelligence Community (IC) directives issued by your office, damage assessments are used “to evaluate actual or potential damage to national security resulting from the unauthorized disclosure or compromise of classified national intelligence.”
With that in mind, the two Democratic committee chairs urged Haines to begin the damage assessment immediately to ascertain how badly the American intelligence apparatus has been harmed by Trump’s treachery and deceit.
“The facts that are now public make clear that a damage assessment is appropriate. If you
have not already done so, we request that you instruct the National Counterintelligence
Executive, in consultation with the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community and other
Inspectors General as appropriate, to conduct a damage assessment. In addition, we ask that you
commit to providing an appropriate classified briefing on the conduct of the damage assessment
as soon as possible. Even as the Justice Department’s investigation proceeds, ensuring that we
take all necessary steps to protect classified information and mitigate the damage to national
security done by its compromise is critically important,” the lawmakers’ letter concludes.
You can read the entire letter from Representatives Carolyn Maloney and Adam Schiff in the tweet from CNN‘s Zachary Cohen below.
News: Dem chairs of House Oversight & Intel committees request “immediate review & damage assessment” from Director of National Intelligence Haines after classified docs were recovered in search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence, per letter obtained by me, @SaraMurray & @kpolantz. pic.twitter.com/NxkoH3IMCb
— Zachary Cohen (@ZcohenCNN) August 13, 2022
Original reporting by Zachary Cohen at CNN.
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Vinnie Longobardo is the Managing Editor of Occupy Democrats. He's a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music, and art.