Donald Trump’s interview with Fox News anchor Bret Baier made headlines, not just for the former president’s penchant for colorful commentary, but also for the potential legal consequences for his responses that may be viewed as admissions in the federal criminal case against him — a fact that many conservatives noted with dismay.
Earlier this month, the Department of Justice unsealed a federal indictment stemming from Special Counsel Jack Smith’s investigation with 37 criminal counts spelling out how Trump retained boxes of documents that “included information regarding defense and weapons capabilities of both the United States and foreign counties; United States nuclear programs; potential vulnerabilities of the United States and its allies to military attack; and plans for possible retaliation in response to foreign attack.”
Some of the most shocking allegations in the indictment relate to communications from Trump, his family members, his attorneys, and other staffers acknowledging that he had retained classified information that had not been declassified — plus the now-viral photos showing boxes of documents that allegedly contained classified information, stacked up in bathrooms, ballroom stages, storage rooms, and other nonsecure areas.
Trump pled not guilty to all the charges against him and has vociferously insisted the prosecution against him is a “WITCH HUNT!”
The topic of the federal charges came up multiple times during the interview, and while the ex-president insisted he had “zero” worries about the indictment, he might be wise to worry now in the aftermath of that interview, specifically regarding his discussion of how he responded to the National Archives and Records Administration’s request for the return of the documents and attempts to explain why he took and kept the documents.
Many conservative legal commentators were shocked by Trump seemingly admitting to key elements of these crimes on national television — a confession that is almost certain to be admissible in court. The ex-president, like all criminal defendants, has the constitutional right to refuse to testify, but Smith’s prosecutorial team can gather up all of Trump’s television appearances, Truth Social posts, campaign rally speeches, and other public comments and enter them into the record to his legal detriment.