Trump takes victory lap over heavily redacted affidavit
Former US President Donald Trump took an unpredictable victory lap over a heavily redacted affidavit that revealed the probable cause behind the search warrant served at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida earlier this month.
Washington: Former US President Donald Trump took an unpredictable victory lap over a heavily redacted affidavit that revealed the probable cause behind the search warrant served at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida earlier this month.
On Friday, Trump took to TruthSocial, his social media app, to ostensibly rejoice that the document was "heavily redacted" before pointing out that "nothing mentioned on 'nuclear'" and a "total public relations subterfuge by the FBI and DOJ".
He also condemned magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, who ordered the redacted affidavit, saying he should "never have allowed the break-in of my home".
Of course, no "break-in" was allowed, but rather a search warrant to obtain classified information, possession of which would be a felony offence under a law that the former President had signed in 2018.
"He (Judge Reinhart) recused himself two months ago from one of my cases based on his animosity and hatred of your favourite President, me. What changed? Why hasn't he recused himself in this case? Obama must be very proud of him right now," Trump added.
Multiple media reports in the US were agog with his reaction and outbursts of his supporters led by Fox News.
Trump's reaction appeared to be nothing more than another page from the 'best defence is a good offence' playbook. If he was found to have top secret and highly classified information, then he could be in a world of legal jeopardy, some reports said, which felt the former President was well on his path to an indictment.
Conservatives, that is the Republicans and Trump supporters, took to Twitter and went into a frenzy after finally seeing the heavily-redacted affidavit for the FBI raid.
Earlier on Friday, a federal judge in Florida unsealed the redacted, 38-page affidavit used to justify the search warrant executed on Trump's Florida home.
As Fox News Digital reported soon after the document was released to the public, "20 pages of the 38-page affidavit were either significantly or fully redacted".
After scanning through the affidavit and seeing how much was blacked out, the conservatives blasted the FBI, accusing the bureau of refusing to be transparent over the raid and not having provided clear and sufficient evidence that a raid on Trump's home was warranted.
The Daily Wire's Twitter account tweeted a photo of one of the pages from the document that was fully blacked-out and sarcastically commented: "This is very helpful! Thank you!"
Breaking out his own sarcastic take, Washington Times columnist Tim Young tweeted: "This affidavit is as revealing as we all assumed it would be," while also sharing photos of sections of the document completely obscured.
Conservative commentator Carmine Sabia tweeted: "The most hilarious part of this affidavit is the media pretending that it shows something. This was done to protect President Joe Biden and the Democrats in 2024."
The Federalist co-founder Sean Davis shared multiple images of completely redacted pages of the affidavit, commenting: "Transparency is one of DOJ's and FBI's passions... The DOJ and FBI are so corrupt that they're redacting their reasons for redactions in their justification for raiding a US President's home. However much contempt you have for these lawless agencies, it's not nearly enough."
Breitbart's Joel Pollak slammed the FBI's justification, saying: "Reading through the affidavit. So far the main complaint is that Trump's boxes were disorganised, and that possibly sensitive stuff was mixed in with memorabilia and junk... For this, they raided a former US President's home."
The former President's son Donald Trump Jr. tweeted out the blacked-out images, and commented: "Well this really clears things up."
Trump Communications director Taylor Budowich said in a series of tweets: "The release of a heavily redacted, overtly political affidavit only proves that the Biden administration is desperate to cover up their unprecedented, unnecessary, and un-American raid against President Donald J. Trump.
"This is a grave travesty, and what is unredacted only further supports President Trump's position, there was NO reason for a raid, it is all politics."
Conservative radio host Vince Coglianese pointed out a crucial bit of info unable to be seen in the document. "In the affidavit, the Justice Department acknowledged that Trump's lawyers and former officials pointed to his 'absolute authority to declassify documents' as president. If the DOJ explains why they ignored that point, their rationale is completely redacted," he tweeted.
"So anyway, Biden's FBI just raided the home of his political opponent and they don't feel the need to even tell why. In case you're wondering how close we are to the brink," said another conservative radio host, Jesse Kelly.