December 4, 2021

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Biden’s refusal to accept executive privilege sparks a new storm with Trump

(CNN) – Joe Biden and Donald Trump are locked in an extraordinary and growing conflict that will have profound political consequences now and in 2024.

Biden took the conflict that erupted after the uprising in the U.S. Capitol to another level on Monday, refusing to assert administrative privilege in the second volume of documents that Trump wants to prevent on Monday from returning to the national archives. House Select Commission investigating the January 6 attack. This development was first reported by CNN.

There have been times in American history when former presidents have attacked and tried to undermine their successors. Many presidents have personally expressed frustration at the actions of their predecessors. But in the modern age nothing is equal to the conflict between presidents 45 and 46.

Trump is primarily responsible for that. By lying about voter fraud he has convinced his millions of voters that Biden is an abusive president. The attempt to block the former president’s January 6 commission, which was twice challenged, is in line with his continued efforts to avert the consequences of his anti – democratic behavior.

Why did Trump sue the commission investigating the insurgency? 1:31

Trump says he has the sole right Enforcement of administrative privilege They are designed to prevent endless cases and the work of the Commission in many courts.

Paradoxically, attempts to account for the former president could provide him with the oxygen he needs for his rebel policy. Following Biden’s refusal to intervene, Trump has already filed a lawsuit to prevent the previous set of documents from reaching the commission. He will add the latest in his case as he aims to derail the effort to explore the source of the mass riots he provoked on January 6 and to turn the clock in the hope that Republicans will win next fall. Investigation.

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The confrontation with Biden will only provoke attempts to turn Trump’s efforts to investigate the tumultuous end of his presidency into a fodder for a political comeback. He is already turning the 2024 midterm and presidential elections into a platform for falsehoods that power was stolen from him in a fraudulent election. Trump and his allies have branded Biden’s refusal to cooperate with his ambition for political power as evidence of political revenge against the former president.

However, what Biden wants last is a new confrontation with his one-time and future rival. Since winning last year’s election, Biden has sought to unite a divided country, with Trump’s lies about election fraud and misinformation spread by his campaigners in the media exacerbating the atmosphere of anger among “re-magnify America” ​​devotees.

At times, the current president refers to his predecessor as “old” without wanting to be named. The ongoing controversy between Biden and Trump over the documents is one of the endless controversies that will ensure that the poisonous legacy of the Trump presidency will last for months and years in the United States.

No president since Gerald Ford – who apologized after the Watergate scandal that led to the resignation of Richard Nixon – has inherited such torture traditions from his immediate predecessors. Only by Trump inciting the fever of his supporters and almost daily challenging Biden’s right to be president and deepening national divisions based on the lie that he won the election.

But while he wants to push Trump into the past, Biden has little incentive to block the commission’s work on the basis of a practical problem such as administrative privilege.

Accepting Trump’s claims to protect the integrity of the presidency should prevent Biden from making his own argument that he was elected to defend American democracy, which prevailed during Trump’s presidential transition in January, despite a test over the years. Trump, who inevitably distorts the decorum and traditions of the presidency, has shown little interest in protecting him in four years in the Oval Office.

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Pence blamed the media for discrediting the Capitol attack 2:01

But the recent escalation between Trump and Biden will further provoke a possible political reversal of Trump and a possible political reunion with his successor in 2024.

The Commission is extensively searching for White House documents

If Trump does not receive a court order to halt the process, the National Archives will begin submitting documents to the House Committee before November 12th. According to a letter from White House adviser Dana Remus, “President Biden has ruled that asserting administrative privilege is not in the best interests of the United States, and therefore is not justified.”

“As a result, President Biden did not support the former president’s claim,” Remus wrote.

The House of Representatives select committee on January 6 specifically requested all documents and communications, including invitations, agendas and meetings of senior officials and external advisers, including Rudy Giuliani.

The conflict over documents is not the only conflict in which Trump seeks to assert administrative privilege, but the principle that presidents should keep their advice and insider information confidential. Trump has asked several former top aides, including former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, to say he could not comply with the commission’s saponings for the same reason.

The most controversial of these cases was Steve Bannon, cited by the House last week for criminal contempt of Congress. The allegations of Trump’s former political guru are seen as particularly lean by legal experts because he was not a government official during the Capitol uprising. In addition to his conversations with Trump, the commission wants to investigate if he had any contact with the organizers of Trump’s rally prior to the January 6 rally on Capitol Hill.

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In the “Beryl” book by the Washington Post journalists Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, Bunnon was a key figure in the “war room” at the Willard Hotel in Washington, where Giuliani also had a number of contacts with the then president. He sought to pressure then-Vice President Mike Pence to refuse to certify Biden’s election in Congress.

It is now up to the judiciary to decide whether or not to prosecute Bannon in another judicial process that delays the work of the Commission.

Moisés Naim: Trump may win the 2024 election 1:23

The question of the extent to which former presidents can exercise executive power has not been conclusively proven in court, which is one reason why Trump’s claims could lead to a protracted lawsuit and a historic moment. Presidents are sometimes open to administrative privileges of their predecessors, in the obvious hope that they will expect similar respect when they leave office.

It is common practice for past presidents to consult with the current White House Legislative Council and make the final decision on the incumbent president’s claim. This privilege is considered to reside with the Acting Chairman, not anyone holding office; So there is a final opinion on Trump’s claims.

And some modern presidents have put forward controversial and high-profile claims like Trump, who for generations have been trying to prevent the truth about the vicious attack on American democracy from coming to light.