Trump news – live: FBI were looking for ‘classified nuclear documents’ at Mar-a-Lago, report says

·18-min read

FBI agents were looking for “classified nuclear documents” during their dramatic search of Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, according to a new report.

It comes as the fallout from the FBI’s raid continues, the Department of Justice has filed a motion to unseal the search warrant used by federal agents to seize documents from former President Donald Trump’s Florida home.

Attorney General Merrick Garland announced the move stressing that the decision was not taken lightly and that he personally authorised the decision to seek the warrant.

Meanwhile, reports have revealed that the FBI’s raid on Mar-a-Lago may have been spurred by an informant at the resort tipping the bureau off that Mr Trump and his team had not handed over all the relevant documents stored at the ex-president’s Florida residence. It is not yet clear who the informant might be, but the Monday raid saw agents searching private areas including a bedroom.

The former president and some members of his legal team have claimed without providing proof that agents may have planted evidence at his home.

Mr Trump yesterday pleaded the fifth amendment 440 times in his sworn deposition to the long-running New York State probe into his real estate dealings. His children Ivanka and Donald Jr both recently gave depositions in the civil investigation after months of fighting subpoenas for their testimony.

Key Points

Trump and family watched FBI Mar-a-Lago search on security cameras, attorney says

08:52 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Donald Trump’s attorney Christina Bobb said the former president and his family watched the search in his Mar-a-Lago home in Florida on a security camera from their New York home.

Ms Bobb said the ex-president and his family “probably had a better view than I did because they had the CCTV they were able to watch. I was stuck in a parking lot”.

They were actually able to see the whole thing, she added.

“They actually have a better idea of what took place inside,” she said on Real America’s Voice.

Has someone in Trump’s inner circle flipped?

08:30 , Oliver O'Connell

With each passing day, it becomes harder for a casual observer to distinguish between the post-presidential life of Donald Trump and that of late-season Tony Soprano.

In the past week alone, Mr Trump’s home has been searched by the FBI as part of an investigation into his handling of classified documents, he pled the Fifth Amendment in a separate case into his business dealings in New York, and now, according to several reports, he is trying to flush out a rat in his inner circle.

“Trumpworld is abuzz with speculation about which close aide or aides has ‘flipped’ and provided additional sensitive information to the FBI about what former President Trump was keeping at Mar-a-Lago,” Axios reported this morning, citing several sources.

Richard Hall reports.

Trumpworld smells a rat. Has someone in his inner circle flipped?

What is the growing ‘Dark Brandon’ meme phenomenon?

07:45 , Oliver O'Connell

During a post-race interview with Nascar driver Brandon Brown in October 2021, newscaster Kellie Stavast believed the crowd behind him – clearly chanting “f*** Joe Biden” – was instead cheering him on with “let’s go, Brandon”.

“Let’s go, Brandon” or even just “Brandon” quickly became shorthand on the American right to broadcast a middle finger to the president, a rallying cry plastered on T-shirts, bumper stickers, yard signs and across the internet.

It was later adopted broadly to criticise the administration and express disappointment with a president critics perceived as woefully ill-equipped for reality.

After a string of “good news” for the Biden agenda, White House officials elevated a meme from terminally online obscurity, reclaiming ironic images of a tired and gaffe-prone president cast as a demi-god-like figure.

Alex Woodward takes a look at the meme.

Inside the ‘Dark Brandon’ phenomenon

Scott Perry claims he is not target of investigation after his phone is seized

07:00 , Oliver O'Connell

A Republican congressman who recently had his phone seized by the FBI is running damage control and insisting that he is not accused of wrongdoing.

Rep Scott Perry went on Fox News on Wednesday to tell viewers that he is not a “target” of the FBI’s investigation — which apparently is centred at least for now around former President Donald Trump’s supposedly illegal obtention of classified documents from the White House.

John Bowden reports.

GOP rep claims he is not target of investigation after his phone is seized

Trump says he won’t contest publication of Mar-a-Lago search warrant

06:40 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Donald Trump said late on Thursday that he won’t oppose a move by the Justice Department to make public the search warrant for Monday’s FBI raid on his Florida residence.

Read the full story here:

Trump says he won’t contest publication of Mar-a-Lago search warrant

Beto O’Rourke calls voter a ‘motherf***er’

06:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Beto O’Rourke, the Democratic candidate for Texas governor, called a voter a “motherf***er” for laughing during a discussion about the Uvalde school shooting at a town hall meeting.

Mr O’Rourke was briefly describing horrific details from the May shooting that claimed the lives of 19 children and two teachers on Wednesday in Mineral Wells when laughter arose from a heckler in the audience.

Gustaf Kilander has the story.

Beto O’Rourke calls voter a ‘motherf***er’ in fiery town hall

Donald Trump won't oppose the move by Justice Department to make the warrant public

06:04 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Donald Trump said late on Thursday that he won’t oppose the move by the Justice Department to make the warrant public.

Attorney General Merrick Garland said that he had “personally approved the decision to seek a search warrant” for former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Florida.

Mr Trump wrote on his social media platform Truth Social late on Thursday that “not only will I not oppose the release of documents related to the unAmerican, unwarranted, and unnecessary raid and break-in of my home in Palm Beach, Florida, Mar-a-Lago, I am going a step further by ENCOURAGING the immediate release of those documents.”

Insiders say Trump is panicking as Kushner and Melania pointed to as possible moles in FBI raid

06:03 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Donald Trump is reportedly trying to hunt down someone who could’ve communicated with federal authorities, writes Gustaf Kilander.

Read the full story here:

Insiders say Trump is panicking as Kushner and Melania pointed to as possible moles

How the lawyerly Merrick Garland just called Donald Trump’s bluff

05:55 , Maroosha Muzaffar

“The property receipt is a document that federal law requires law enforcement agents to leave with the property owner,” Merrick Garland said on Thursday.

“The Department filed the motion to make public the warrant and receipt, in light of the former president’s public confirmation of the search, some of the surrounding circumstances, and the substantial public interest in this matter,” he added.

Or to put it another way, either put up or shut up, Mr Trump, writes Andrew Buncombe.

Read the full analysis here:

How the lawyerly Merrick Garland just called Donald Trump’s bluff

Trump deflects with another conspiracy on Truth Social as Merrick Garland calls to unseal Mar-a-Lago warrant

05:53 , Maroosha Muzaffar

In a Truth Social post that came as Merrick Garland publicly addressed the search of Donald Trump’s Florida home, the former president questioned why the Justice Department was not investigating Barack Obama for presidential records that the Obama presidential library is digitising for later publication.

“I continue to ask, what happened to the 33 million pages taken to Chicago by President Obama?” Mr Trump complained.“The Fake News Media refuses to talk about that,” he continued. “They want it CANCELED!”

Read the full story by John Bowden here:

Trump deflects with conspiracy as Merrick Garland calls to unseal Mar-a-Lago warrant

Trump's former transportation secretary met with Jan 6 committee, report says

05:51 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The House select committee investigating the January 6 riots of last year has recently interviewed former transportation secretary Elaine Chao.

The committee has also been in talks with former education secretary Betsy DeVos and former national security adviser Robert O’Brien, CNN reported.

Quoting multiple sources, it reported that Mr O’Brien is expected to appear virtually before the panel on Friday.

Ms Chao and Ms DeVos resigned a day after the attack on the US Capitol and called for removing the former president Donald Trump from power.

Trump faces multiple investigations

05:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump is under several congressional, civil and criminal investigations, which range from his business interests and allegations of tax fraud to his efforts to undermine the 2020 presidential election and fuel violence at the US Capitol.

The former president, his family business, real estate interests and political allies are under scrutiny from federal investigators, state attorneys and members of Congress.

Alex Woodward has put together a list of the key probes involving Mr Trump and where they currently stand following an unprecedented FBI raid at his Palm Beach, Florida home at Mar-a-Lago on 8 August.

Jan 6, Mar-a-Lago and a golf course: The investigations Donald Trump is facing

Attorney General asks court to unseal warrant for Mar-a-Lago search

05:08 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The Department of Justice has asked a federal court to unseal the warrant the FBI used to search Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home.

Merrick Garland said on Thursday that there is an extraordinary public interest in the case about classified records and a motion filed in the federal court in Florida said that “the public’s clear and powerful interest in understanding what occurred under these circumstances weighs heavily in favour of unsealing.”

Under usual circumstances, such documents remain sealed during the investigation and so the attorney general’s request to unseal the warrant is out of the ordinary.

Trump hires prominent Atlanta attorney for election probe

04:34 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Donald Trump has hired a prominent Atlanta criminal defence lawyer, Drew Findling — who is known to have some famous clients like Cardi B, Gucci Mane besides others — to represent him in the 2020 election probe case.

Mr Findling’s Twitter bio includes the hashtag “Billion Dollar Lawyer” and on his Instagram feed, he can be seen posing with his famous clients.

Associated Press reported that the Findling Law Firm issued a statement on Thursday in which it confirmed that it has been hired by the former president.

Newhouse stands out among GOP impeachment voters with primary success

04:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The 4th Congressional District in Washington state is a land of snow-capped volcanic peaks and lush irrigated orchards that produce most of the nation’s apples. It’s also home to one of the few Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump and then won his next election.

US Rep. Dan Newhouse was one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump last year, and is one of only two to beat back GOP challengers this year.

Newhouse’s primary success rare among GOP impeachment voters

ICYMI: Trump hailed at golf club fundraiser

03:15 , Oliver O'Connell

Supporters of former president Donald Trump hailed him for his “sacrifices” while hosting a fundraiser at his golf club in Bedminister, New Jersey, The New York Times reported.

Mr Trump’s supporters lauded him during a fundraiser for Representative Jeff Van Drew, who switched from being a Democrat to being a Republican in 2019.

Conservative author and YouTube show host Elizabeth Nader told The Times that he spoke to about 50 supporters for about 30 minutes and then took questions.

Eric Garcia reports.

Supporters thank Trump for ‘sacrifices’ at posh fundraiser at his golf club

Trump took the fifth more than 440 times in NY AG deposition

02:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Former president Donald Trump on Wednesday declined to answer over 440 questions during a deposition with investigators working for New York Attorney General Letitia James’ office, instead choosing to invoke his fifth amendment right against self-incrimination each time.

According to multiple reports citing sources familiar with what happened during the Wednesday session, Mr Trump only answered one question — he provided his name when asked after he was sworn in as a witness.

Andrew Feinberg reports.

Trump took the fifth more than 440 times in deposition with New York AG’s office

Trump accused of using QAnon theme song in campaign video

02:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump’s recent campaign-style video that he posted to his social media platform Truth Social appears to feature a song titled after the slogan of the QAnon conspiracy theory.

Maroosha Muzaffar has the story.

Trump accused of using QAnon theme song in campaign video: ‘That’s not an accident’

FBI were looking for ‘classified nuclear documents’ during search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, report says

01:45 , Graeme Massie

FBI agents were looking for “classified nuclear documents” during their dramatic search of Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, according to a new report.

It comes just hours after Attorney General Merrick Garland said the Department of Justice had asked a federal judge in Florida to unseal the search warrant following a barrage of criticism from the former president and many Republicans.

FBI were looking for ‘classified nuclear documents’ during search of Mar-a-Lago

Fox panelist shouted down for suggesting Trump may actually have done something wrong

01:15 , Oliver O'Connell

A panelist on Fox News was shouted down by the hosts on Wednesday night for suggesting that former president Donald Trump must have been in the wrong to warrant a search by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at his Mar-a-Lago residence.

Sravasti Dasgupta reports.

Fox guest shouted down as she suggests Trump may actually have done something wrong

Bolton ‘embarrassed at low price’ offered to assassinate him

Friday 12 August 2022 00:30 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump’s former national security adviser John Bolton has said he was “embarrassed” at the low price of $300,000 offered to assassinate him by an Iranian military operative in a tongue-in-cheek comment.

Mr Bolton was asked about his views by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on The Situation Room on Wednesday on the US Justice Department’s revelation of new details about the plot to assassinate him by announcing charges against an Iranian man.

Shweta Sharma has the story.

John Bolton says he is ‘embarrassed at low price offered to assassinate him

Primary wins and FBI search deepen Trump bonds with GOP

Thursday 11 August 2022 23:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump ‘s pick for governor in the swing state of Wisconsin easily defeated a favorite of the Republican establishment.

In Connecticut, the state that launched the Bush family and its brand of compassionate conservatism, a fiery Senate contender who promoted Trump’s election lies upset the state GOP‘s endorsed candidate. Meanwhile in Washington, Republicans ranging from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to conspiracy theorist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene defended Trump against an unprecedented FBI search.

And that was just this week.

The rapid developments crystalized the former president’s singular status atop a party he has spent the past seven years breaking down and rebuilding in his image. Facing mounting legal vulnerabilities and considering another presidential run, he needs support from the party to maintain his political career. But, whether they like it or not, many in the party also need Trump, whose endorsement has proven crucial for those seeking to advance to the November ballot.

Trump's bond with GOP deepens after primary wins, FBI search

Support for electing president through popular vote rises across board

Thursday 11 August 2022 23:00 , Oliver O'Connell

Support for abolishing the Electoral College and moving to a popular vote system is at a record high as Americans continue to worry about the direction of the country.

John Bowden reports.

Support for popular vote rises among both Democrats and Republicans

Report: Some documents seized by FBI labelled ‘Top Secret'

Thursday 11 August 2022 22:45 , Oliver O'Connell

Maggie Haberman of The New York Times reports that some of the contents of the boxes taken away by the FBI were labelled “Top Secret” and included “an array of sensitive material”.

Analysis: How Merrick Garland just called Donald Trump’s bluff

Thursday 11 August 2022 22:30 , Oliver O'Connell

It was all over and done with rather quickly, so it was easy to miss.

But in announcing on Thursday that the Department of Justice had asked a court to unseal the warrant given to the FBI to raid Mar-a-Lago, Attorney General Merrick Garland also did something else – he called Donald Trump’s bluff.

“The property receipt is a document that federal law requires law enforcement agents to leave with the property owner,” Garland said, speaking at the Department of Justice in Washington DC.

“The Department filed the motion to make public the warrant and receipt in light of the former president’s public confirmation with a search the surrounding circumstances and the substantial public interest in this matter.”

Or to put it another way, either put up or shut up, Mr Trump.

Andrew Buncombe, chief US correspondent for The Independent, takes a look at how Mr Garland threw down the gauntlet for the former president.

How the lawyerly Merrick Garland just called Donald Trump’s bluff

More Trump cabinet members talking to Jan 6 committee

Thursday 11 August 2022 22:08 , Oliver O'Connell

More Trump cabinet members are testifying or are in talks with the House select committee investigating the 6 January 2021 attack on the US Capitol.

The committee recently interviewed former Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and is in talks with former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

Former National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien is set to testify before the committee tomorrow, sources tell NBC News.

Both Ms Chao and Ms DeVos resigned the day after the Capitol riot and had discussed invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Mr Trump from power.

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with the panel on Tuesday and reportedly also discussed the 25th Amendment being raised, according to CNN.

The network also reports that the committee is still negotiating terms for a potential interview with former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe.

A total of nine cabinet-level Trump officials are known to have engaged with the committee.

Is Trump being investigated under the Espionage Act?

Thursday 11 August 2022 22:00 , Oliver O'Connell

The Independent’s John Bowden takes a look at how Mr Trump’s handling of classified documents could fall under the parameters of the Espionage Act should it be found he has mismanaged national security documents.

Is Trump being investigated over national security concerns under the Espionage Act?

Trump team has not decided how to respond

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:58 , Oliver O'Connell

CNN’s Chief White House Correspondent Kaitlan Collins reports that former President Donald Trump and his legal team have not yet decided on how to respond to the Department of Justice’s motion to unseal the warrant used to search Mar-a-Lago.

The department has been instructed to confer with the former president and his legal team about its request and to tell the court by Friday 3pm if Mr Trump opposes the release of the warrant.

Trump deflects with another conspiracy as Garland calls to unseal Mar-a-Lago warrant

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:32 , Oliver O'Connell

Donald Trump turned his fired on a longtime favourite target on Thursday after Attorney General Merrick Garland called his bluff and filed a motion to unseal the search warrant used to justify the FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago.

In a Truth Social post that came as Mr Garland publicly addressed the Monday search of his Florida resort and home, Mr Trump questioned why the Justice Department was not investigating Barack Obama for presidential records that the Obama presidential library is digitising for later publication.

John Bowden reports.

Trump deflects with conspiracy as Merrick Garland calls to unseal Mar-a-Lago warrant

Trump weighs in on Truth Social

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:26 , Oliver O'Connell

In a post on his platform Truth Social, Donald Trump says:

My attorneys and representatives were cooperating fully, and very good relationships had been established. The government could have had whatever they wanted, if we had it. They asked us to put an additional lock on a certain area - DONE! Everything was fine, better than that of most previous Presidents, and then, out of nowhere and with no warning, Mar-a-Lago was raided, at 6:30 in the morning, by VERY large numbers of agents, and even “safecrackers.” They got way ahead of themselves. Crazy!

He continues by claiming that agents went through Melania Trump’s closets:

….Just learned that agents went through the First Lady’s closets and rummaged through her clothing and personal items. Surprisingly, left area in a relative mess. Wow!

Newly filed order gives Trump 24 hours to respond

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:25 , Oliver O'Connell

The newly filed order by the Department of Justice gives Donald Trump until 3pm on 12 August to respond as to whether he wants to keep the warrant sealed or not.

Why doesn’t Trump release the search warrant himself?

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:15 , Oliver O'Connell

There is nothing to stop him from making the warrant public.

Here’s our earlier reporting on the matter.

Why doesn’t Donald Trump release the FBI search warrant for Mar-a-Lago?

Kushner? Melania?: It could be any one of them

Thursday 11 August 2022 21:09 , Oliver O'Connell

Jared Kushner, Melania Trump, and many others have been pointed to as possible FBI informants following the raid on Mar-a-Lago, former President Donald Trump’s private club in Southern Florida.

Who is CI-1?

Gustaf Kilander reports.

Kushner and Melania pointed to as possible moles as walls close in on Trump