It's been three weeks since federal agents ransacked Mar-a-Lago over a document dispute with the National Archives. The allegations of highly classified materials being on-site prompted the raid as it might have violated the Espionage Act and obstructed justice. The longer this marinates in the news cycle, the more absurd this fiasco becomes. Russian collusion was already a tall tale—this has the same themes but on steroids.
Does anyone believe that the Justice Department was disturbed by the National Archives's concern about missing documents that it needed to ransack a residence to ensure compliance with the Presidential Records Act, which isn't even a criminal statute? And after dropping that bombshell, which probably gave Trump the 2024 Republican nomination, think that we won't forget about it?
The merciful thing about the Mar-a-Lago raid is that this anti-Trump swipe was condensed to about a month, unlike the Russian collusion circus that lasted years. It has all the same events, too—there's no smoking gun, and all the follow-up stories point to no illegality. Where's the damning and incriminating evidence? With a Trump-centered story this big, we would have heard something by now.
Instead, we've subtracted elements initially used to justify the raid from this story. The egregiously concocted myth that Trump had nuclear secrets and other related documents strewn about like a public defender's office has disappeared from the news cycle. That was a massive DOJ leak, and it's not mentioned in the parts of the affidavit released last week. No criminal intent is ever mentioned in the document that gave the DOJ probable cause to sack the house.
Now, we've learned that documents that were protected under attorney-client privilege were taken from the home. This, along with the passports, seem to support what Erick Erickson alluded to about the raid being centered on finding something to tie Trump to January 6.
Matt Taibbi had a good description of this whole raid, which is that it sounds more like an accidental missile launch than a targeted strike, and because there was no there-there, the rapid retreat in coverage will probably get more apparent by the week. You can only write so much about lawyers engaging in email tag about missing cocktail napkins.
We've seen duds against Trump before—the encryption key to the trove of Clinton emails posted on Wikileaks is one of the biggest whoppers. A donor emailed the code to Trump, his son, and key staffers on the Trump campaign, but that was after the emails were already made public. CNN made it seem like Trump knew before Wikileaks's publication, a colossal screw-up that the liberal network failed to acknowledge for several hours. Brian Ross reported that then-National Security Adviser Michael Flynn met with the Russians during the 2016 election, which caused the markets to tank and the liberal media to go ga-ga over another "walls are closing in" story. In reality, Flynn met with the Russians after the 2016 election, which isn't unusual for an incoming administration to make these diplomatic overtures after an election. Ross was suspended for a month and later left ABC News.
The only critical difference is that while we knew the Russian collusion investigation was a hoax based on a Clinton-funded piece of opposition research—the Steele dossier—the new updates could always be re-weaponized to embarrass and expose the liberal media. There are no new developments worth hurling back in the faces of smug liberals who thought this raid would dredge up something significant. Failure to launch is more like it.
The collusion delusion was annoying and damaging to the country. Still, it was a prolonged observation of how much punishment liberals were willing to self-inflict regarding their mythical attachment that Trump was a Kremlin intelligence asset. For this raid, it's email tag and documents that Trump possibly could have legally possessed. The blowback is that everyone who isn't Trump-deranged sees that the DOJ can and will execute search warrants based on political animosity, so that's really healthy for our institutions, right?
Are we enjoying the new norms, everyone?