Top-ranking House Democrats have requested a “damage assessment” from U.S. intelligence officials after the FBI carried out a search warrant of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property residence looking for top-secret documents.
In the letter, sent by House Intelligence Committee chair Adam Schiff and House Oversight Committee chair Carolyn Maloney, the lawmakers refer to the recently unsealed search warrant and a list of documents retrieved from Trump’s residence.
“Those entrusted with access to classified information have a duty and an obligation to protect it. Yet, a recently unsealed court-authorized search warrant and the inventory of property recovered at the Mar-a-Lago Club describe numerous classified documents held by former President Trump, including Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information (TS/SCI) material—among the most sensitive and highly protected information in the U.S. Government,” states the letter, addressed to Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines.
“Former President Trump’s conduct has potentially put our national security at grave risk,” the lawmakers continued.
The request from Schiff and Maloney was first reported by Politico.
“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 letter from Maloney and Schiff concludes.
Newsweek has reached out to Trump’s press office for comment.
The search warrant unsealed by a federal judge on Friday revealed that Trump is under investigation for potentially violating the Espionage Act, a 1917 law that carries a penalty of a fine, up to 10 years in prison, or both for the mishandling of defense information.
Trump and his allies have blasted the federal investigation of Trump’s possible mishandling of classified documents.
In a Friday statement, Trump said that the documents involved in the investigation had all been declassified, and his office released a separate statement claiming the former president had “a standing order that documents removed from the Oval Office and taken into the residence were deemed to be declassified.”
“Number one, it was all declassified. Number two, they didn’t need to ‘seize’ anything. They could have had it anytime they wanted without playing politics and breaking into Mar-a-Lago,” Trump wrote.
In a statement on Tuesday, Trump called the FBI’s Mar-a-Lago raid “an unprecedented infringement of the rights of every American citizen.” He also has suggested that the FBI could have been planting evidence at the property.
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