It would not be surprising if former President Donald Trump did not face any charges in special counsel Jack Smith's probe into his handling of classified documents as additional hurdles will make the decision more complicated, former Trump attorney Timothy Parlatore told NBC News' "Meet the Press" on Sunday.
Parlatore, who recently left the former president's legal team due to "internal" issues, said it would "not at all" be surprising if there are no charges, because "you have to evaluate every case based on what are the facts in the law and is it something that's provable? But then there's also all of the other atmospherics of is this, from a discretion point of view, is this something where a prosecution makes sense?"
Concerning additional hurdles, Parlatore gave the example that if the case involves potential national defense information, the issue of whether to declassify the information could factor into whether to bring charges.
For example, Parlatore said that even if the report is true that there is a tape where Trump acknowledges the existence of a classified document in his possession connected to Iran and that it reveals the former president knew the material was classified and that he was not permitted to share it, prosecuting Trump might not be the best decision "because there are all of these other problems. Classification is not binding on the jury. You have to actually take these documents, show them to the jury, and then prove to them that it constitutes national defense information."
Parlatore also played down the possibility that Trump will get charged with anything connected to Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, saying that was a "political committee [that probed the issue]. When it comes to actually looking into the statute, all of those require them to prove that, at the time, he knew that all of these allegations of fraud in the election were false."
But Parlatore said Trump "had some people telling him that there was fraud. He had some people tell him that there was no fraud. All the judicial rulings, some of them reached a partial ruling based on the merits, based on not a complete thing. A lot of them said, you know, it was threshold issues of standing. And so, yes, there were a lot of judicial rulings against him, but none that said, 'OK, you parties have conducted complete discovery. You've actually gone through everything. And based on the merits, this is what the decision is.'"
Brian Freeman ✉
Brian Freeman, a Newsmax writer based in Israel, has more than three decades writing and editing about culture and politics for newspapers, online and television.
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