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Opening Arguments


Hey. So eventually, Peter Navarro did get around to answering this complaint. In October, he filed a truly bizarre motion for summary judgment, which kind of perfect the course. Yeah. By then, he'd hired Stan brand a longtime D.C. attorney without heretofore good reputation and also his partner Stanley Woodward. These guys appear to have thrown their hats in with the maga weirdos. It's so weird. It's a bizarre thing to say. But anyway, they represent Trump's comms lackey, Dan scavino, Trump's aide Walt nada, who moved the boxes to presidential records around Mar-a-Lago, and they represent our old buddy cash Patel. Plus, yeah, no. They represent at least 1 January 6th defendant who stormed the capitol. Oh, good, good. Yeah, I mean, look, everybody's entitled to counsel. But anyway, so fair enough. So bran first Brandon Woodward repeated the earlier assertion that there was something hinky about narrow trying to get government property back at the same time, Navarro was under criminal investigation. And they did not think it was that their client is like a career criminal. Yeah, she's a serially ignore of things that say we will file process if you keep ignoring it anyway. Right, exactly. He ignored Congress. He ignored ignored Nara. He ignored the Justice Department. If you ignore these things, they don't disappear. They tend to get worse. Yeah. So then Brandon Woodward argued that the PRA has neither a deadline nor any means for the government to enforce it. Let's read a little bit here. Base is the entirety of its grant upon a nonexistent deadline. The PRA merely puts the onus on the archivist to account for the maintenance and custody of presidential records of former presidents, while the PRA may authorize the archivists to seek records once a presidential administration has concluded, it provides the archivist with neither a hard deadline by which to do so nor an enforcement mechanism by which to do so. So that's a weird argument. And they say, so they cite in support of it. An article in The New York Times by Maggie haberman and Mike Schmidt. Not known governmental lawyers right now. By the way, I mean, again, we read section 22 O two that that argument is bonkers, right? The PRA does no such thing it explicitly says from its inception. This was the Congress intent was to say when you make stuff in The White House that stuff belongs to the people not to you. And you have to have to forward it if you do it on your personal account. You have 20 days to give it to the government. It's clearly got it done. Yeah, where do they get this? No deadline. I could understand if it says, you know, promptly or whatever, but it says to what he did. I think they mean like it doesn't say when narrows after the end of administration. I don't know, it's all bonkers. They also point to a case where the court said, there was no private right of civilians to sue to enforce the PRA and from which they infer that the government itself is barred from taking any enforcement action. I mean, it's so flabby. It's just beneath notice. Yeah, there are so many things in this case that are not things I just puts me in the Liz. I will tell you I read the motion to dismiss from front to back. So victory is mine. Okay. So then Brandon Woodward threw in some nonsense about replevin only applying to things with monetary value. And then they wound up by concluding that the government's claim must be dismissed as baseless legal conclusions masquerading as factual allegations. Meow. Then I guess I like patted themselves on the back for making it through the whole thing with a straight face and went out for a nice steak. Yeah. Anyway, at that point. Well done with ketchup. Yeah, good job, guys. Heck of a job. At which point, the government started clearing its throat pretty loudly about that previously filed motion for summary judgment because jiminy freaking Christmas, can you believe this shit? I mean, that's basically what they said in their subsequent briefings. I love the part where Navarro's lawyers argued that the emails were not subject to replenish on the ground that his possession was the result of an innocent oversight and therefore not willful. Of course. Navarro was rather willfully not giving them back, so rather hard to credit that argument much, but hey, Pete tried. His new lawyers also claim that Navarro wasn't entirely sure if he even has any presidential records in his possession, but absolutely promises that once some nonexistent taint team review special master processes complete, presumably at some future date long, long into the future when I guess they think Ron DeSantis will be president, right? The look, then and only then Navarro says he will fork over any presidential records that he might have. And in response to that, the government rather dryly pointed out that Navarro's previous lawyer, the aforementioned earth and water guy John Irving, conceded, in that first letter that, quote, there are between 202 150 presidential records in the 1700 emails reviewed, which, a pretty high percentage, Navarro is not sending out too many personal emails out of that proton mail account. And in other words, quote, the clear record and the undisputed fact that Navarro created or received the emails on his private email account relating to and while performing duties for the administration and neither included them in his official emails, nor returned them to Nara upon request, therefore wrongfully detaining them is the sole relevant inquiry and that's a 100% of the law when it comes to replevin, right? You have my stuff and I want my stuff back. What are the odds that Peter Navarro's email is like, Peter Navarro, White House dojo or, you know, what are the odds that the email itself, the handle, his proton mail account is like, Peter Navarro, king of The White House at proton mail dot com. You know this was his work email. You know that like the entirety of those emails are like, you know, it's not like Bed Bath & Beyond coupons or old navy. It's all work emails. It's full of shit. Anyway, go ahead, I'm sorry. I interrupted. No, no, no, that was good. 70 of your best, Peter Navarro eval. Anyway, Navarro's new lawyers also claim that the PRA is vague as to whether it applies to emails or just paper letters, which, you know, seems like an odd argument to make about a statute that was amended in 2014 to add a specific provision about non official electronic messaging accounts. I mean, they are just trying shit. But okay. This week, judge collar caudalie, unceremoniously dropkick Navarro's arguments and told him to come back. The list of his claims that the judge rejected was long. She was definitely not down with the claim that Navarro didn't have to hand stuff over because the government had one side of the email exchange and that was enough. He was literally made this argument. Anyway, yeah. And she was downright pissed off that Navarro's lawyers tried to have it both ways and pretend there was a dispute as to whether Navarro had any presidential records in his possession because remember, John Irving copped to it because, you know, he's the oil spell. So she wrote, the court again notes that this is not a denial of the stated fact, but an evasion. Doctor Navarro merely contends that because of the ongoing audit, notwithstanding the results of its initial search, he can not say whether or whether or what presidential records are in his possession custody and or control. Nonetheless, in view of the entire record, it is quite clear that this is an effort artificially to create a dispute where there is no factual basis for one. Yeah, that is one pistol federal judge. But look, for our purposes, what's most interesting is what she has to say about the presidential records act, because remember,

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