It’s been interesting to watch this week as Republicans have progressed from saying failed, one-term former president Donald Trump had been served with a search warrant for no reason to falsely claiming the FBI had “planted” evidence on the twice-impeached ex-president.
And now that we know exactly what was found in those boxes Trump had at Mar-a-Lago (top secret documents, some of which laid out American nuclear secrets, along with incredibly sensitive signals intelligence), we have Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH) attempting to move the goalposts yet again, suggesting that such high classified material can be found on your cell phone.
At a press conference Friday, Turner remarked:
“I can tell you that there are a number of things that are classified that fall under the umbrella of nuclear weapons but that are not necessarily things that are truly classified. Many of them you can find on your own phone as we stand here and if they fall into that category, they’re not an imminent national security threat that would rise to the level of, you have to raid Donald Trump’s home and spend nine hours there.”
Turner, it should be noted, serves on the House Intelligence Committee.
Is what the congressman said even marginally true? Not according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Their website notes, explaining that there are “two types of classification.”
“The first type, known as national security information, is information that is classified by an Executive Order. Its release would damage national security to some degree. The second type, known as restricted data, is information that is classified by the Atomic Energy Act. It would assist individuals or organizations in designing, manufacturing, or using nuclear weapons. Access to both types of information is restricted to authorized persons who have been properly cleared and have a ‘need to know’ the information for their official duties. For additional detail, see Classified Information.”
The unsealed search warrant served at Trump’s Palm Beach residence contained all sorts of national security and restricted data, some of which can only be safely viewed in a secure, contained facility that must be designated as such by national security experts. Trump doesn’t have any such facility at his Florida golf club.
Specifically, the Washington Post reports, the inventory lists:
One set of documents is listed as “Various classified TS/SCI documents,” areference to top secret/sensitive compartmented information, a highly classified category of government secrets, in addition to the four sets of top-secret papers. Agents also took three sets of documents classified as secret, and three sets of papers classified as confidential — the lowest level of classification.
So is what Congressman Turner says the least bit true? To answer that, just Google “Top Secret U.S. nuclear files” and see if you get access to anything close to what Trump allegedly had in cardboard boxes all over his Florida residence.