Feb 25, 2022 - Politics & Policy

House panel expands investigation into Trump's handling of documents

Former President Trump speaking in Dallas in July 2011.

Former President Trump speaking in Dallas in July 2011. Photo: Dylan Hollingsworth/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The House Oversight Committee said Friday that it widened its investigation into former President Trump's handling of presidential records Friday by asking the national archivist for information on the contents of the 15 boxes that were recovered from Mar-a-Lago.

Why it matters: Trump's handling of the records puts into question whether he followed the Presidential Records Act, which requires that presidential records be immediately transferred to the national archivist as soon as a president leaves office.

  • The documents recovered by the National Archives included correspondence between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and a letter from former President Obama, according to the Washington Post.

What they're saying: Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) asked David Ferriero, the national archivist, to disclose the level of classification of the documents that Trump took to Mar-a-Lago instead of handing over to the National Archives and Records Administration.

  • Maloney also asked for information on all records that he “had torn up, destroyed, mutilated or attempted to tear up, destroy or mutilate" and disclosure on the finding of any federal inquiries into the classified material.
  • She also said the oversight committee wanted information "relating to White House employees or contractors finding paper in a toilet in the White House, including the White House residence."

In a statement, Maloney said that she is "deeply concerned that former President Trump may have violated the law through his intentional efforts to remove and destroy records that belong to the American people."

  • "This Committee plans to get to the bottom of what happened and assess whether further action is needed to prevent the destruction of additional presidential records and recover those records that are still missing," she added. 

The big picture: The National Archives confirmed to Maloney in a letter last week that Trump had "classified national security information" with him after he left office and that it sought guidance from the Department of Justice on the matter.

Go deeper: Prosecutors leading Manhattan DA's Trump investigation resign

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper