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Mar-a-Lago Judge Issues Ultimatum: Jury Must Review Secret Files or Trump Prevails

via CNN

The judge in Donald Trump’s classified documents case, Aileen Cannon, has given prosecutors a difficult choice: allow jurors to view classified documents found at Mar-a-Lago, compromising national security, or instruct jurors that a President has sole authority to deem documents personal, effectively requiring acquittal.

Cannon’s order comes after she declined to dismiss the case based on Trump’s argument that laws around classified information are too vague, a decision seen by some as a win for prosecutors but setting up Cannon’s new directive.

Cannon’s interpretation of the Presidential Records Act would give presidents broad authority to deem any documents personal, with their decision facing no review – precisely what Trump seeks.

“Although there is no formal means in the PRA by which a president is to make that categorization, an outgoing president’s decision to exclude what he/she considers to be personal records from presidential records transmitted to the National Archives and Records Administration constitutes a president’s categorization of those records as personal under the PRA,” Cannon wrote.

Prosecutors may appeal or risk jeopardizing national security secrets if choosing to show jurors classified materials.

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