Trump claim of planted evidence 'incendiary,' professor says

(NewsNation) — Former President Donald Trump’s legal team faces a Friday deadline to provide evidence of his claims that the FBI planted evidence in its search of Mar-a-Lago.

While Trump has pushed the claim on social media and in interviews, his lawyers have not done so in court filings. They also haven’t substantiated Trump’s claim that he declassified the top-secret documents that were seized during the search.

Judge Raymond Dearie, who was appointed as an independent arbiter to review the seized documents, has ordered Trump’s team to make sworn declarations about both of those claims.

“The claim that the FBI planted evidence is pretty far-fetched and pretty incendiary,” said Matthew Wilson, an associate professor of political science at Southern Methodist University. “I suspect that will fall by the wayside.”

Speaking Sunday on “NewsNation Prime,” Wilson said Trump’s team will likely try to be more nuanced about the declassification question.

“It hinges on what exactly a president has to do to make a document declassified,” Wilson said. “That’s what the debate will be as it plays out in court.”

Aside from the special master review, Trump’s actions in the White House will also be scrutinized this week when the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riots meets.

Overall, the committee has remained tight-lipped about what we can expect to see Wednesday, but one new revelation that’s become public comes from a former Republican congressman Denver Riggleman.

He worked behind the scenes with the committee, using his skills as a former intel officer in the Navy to mostly piece together bits of digital information from the White House on the day of the attack.

“You get a real ‘aha’ moment when you see that the White House switchboard connected to a rioter’s phone while it’s happening,” Riggleman said in a “60 Minutes” interview that aired Sunday.

Riggleman went on to suggest the committee has more to say publicly about direct links between the Trump White House and the rioters, particularly those who planned for a violent attack that day.

Rep. Liz Cheney also said the committee would reveal new information and added when all is said and done, the committee will only recommend that the Justice Department charge Trump with a crime if that is a unanimous committee decision.

On Sunday, Rep. Adam Schiff criticized the DOJ for acting too slowly in its own investigation of the Capitol riots. The Washington Post reported the DOJ is seeking testimony from two former Trump White House aides, and his legal team is working to try to limit the scope of their testimony.