The National Archives and Records Administration debunked former President Donald Trump’s claim about his predecessors taking White House documents and storing them in unsecured locations.
Trump is under federal investigation for alleged mishandling of classified documents and whether he obstructed the investigation. In August, FBI agents searched his home in Florida and recovered roughly 11,000 documents including 300 marked as classified.
Trump tried to defend his actions at rallies in Arizona and Nevada this weekend by falsely claiming that his predecessors did the same thing he is accused of doing.
He accused former presidents – George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama – of taking sensitive documents and storing them in unsecured locations including a car dealership, and a Chinese restaurant with a bowling alley that had “no security and a broken front door.”
In a statement on Tuesday, NARA rejected Trump’s bizarre claim, calling it “false and misleading”.
“The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), in accordance with the Presidential Records Act, assumed physical and legal custody of the Presidential records from the administrations of Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan, when those Presidents left office,” the agency said. “NARA securely moved these records to temporary facilities that NARA leased from the General Services Administration (GSA), near the locations of the future Presidential Libraries that former Presidents built for NARA. All such temporary facilities met strict archival and security standards, and have been managed and staffed exclusively by NARA employees.”
“Reports that indicate or imply that those presidential records were in the possession of the former Presidents or their representatives, after they left office, or that the records were housed in substandard conditions, are false and misleading,” the agency added.