The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday sided with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) by denying a request from former President Donald Trump to allow a special master to review the classified documents that were seized from his Mar-a-Lago estate in August.
Trump had asked the Court to repeal a recent ruling by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that banned the special master from reviewing around 100 documents labeled classified that were among the 11,000 documents seized from his Florida home, CNN reported.
The independent special master, requested by Trump, was tasked with examining whether any of the documents are protected by client or executive privilege. The documents were seized by FBI agents who searched Trump’s house after an approval from Attorney General Merrick Garland. The raid happened after law enforcement received a tip from an informant who was aware of the type of documents that Trump kept and their location.
The documents reportedly included sensitive information related to nuclear weapons and “highly classified programs.” Dozens of empty folders with “classified” markings on them were also found.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing and argued that he had declassified the documents before moving them from the White House to his home, but former DOJ official Mary McCord said that he was not authorized to do so after leaving office.
On Thursday, the Supreme Court denied Trump’s emergency request, which was filed on October 4, in a brief order that read: “The application to vacate the stay entered by the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on September 21, 2022, presented to Justice Thomas and by him referred to the Court is denied.”
The order, which had no publicly noted dissent by any of the Court’s nine justices, three of whom were appointed by Trump, means that the special master will not be allowed to review the classified documents, according to CNN.
The DOJ, which is currently investigating Trump’s alleged mishandling of classified documents with sensitive information, asked the Supreme Court to deny the former president’s request.
In a 34-page document, the DOJ asked the Supreme Court to reject the request and keep the 100 classified documents out of the special master’s reach since Trump didn’t clarify how he would be “harmed” by the appeals court decision, also adding that his arguments about jurisdiction lacked merit.
“He does not acknowledge, much less attempt to rebut, the court of appeals’ conclusion that the district court’s order was a serious and unwarranted intrusion on the Executive Branch’s authority to control the use and distribution of extraordinarily sensitive government records,” the DOJ wrote, saying that “the application should be denied.”
Cannon recently rejected part of a plan by Dearie in which he would order Trump’s lawyers to submit court filings showing whether the former president truly thinks the FBI planted evidence at Mar-a-Lago. Cannon also pushed the deadline for Dearie to finish his review of the documents to December 16 instead of the original date of November 30.
Newsweek reached out to Trump’s media office for comment.