Trump clogged toilet with official docs – media
Former US President Donald Trump has denied claims made in a new book that he clogged a White House toilet with pieces of official documents he had torn up.
“Also, another fake story, that I flushed papers and documents down a White House toilet, is categorically untrue and simply made up by a reporter in order to get publicity for a mostly fictitious book,” Trump said in a statement on Thursday.
Trump’s alleged practice of tearing up presidential records was widely reported on in 2018. At the time, Politico vividly described the struggles of records management analysts who had to stick together small pieces of official documents with a Scotch tape. However, even more colorful details have now been revealed by New York Times White House correspondent Maggie Haberman.
“White House residence staff periodically found papers had clogged a toilet, leaving staff believing Trump had flushed material he'd ripped into pieces,” Haberman wrote on Twitter in response to Axios’ report on her upcoming book, titled ‘Confidence Man’.
Here's some reporting from the book's later years - White House residence staff periodically found papers had clogged a toilet, leaving staff believing Trump had flushed material he'd ripped into pieces https://t.co/ECgj0IL48Q— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) February 10, 2022
Recent media reports suggest that, throughout his presidency, Trump consistently violated the Presidential Records Act, which requires the country’s leaders to preserve official written communications. Earlier this week, the Washington Post, citing people familiar with the matter, revealed that the US National Archives had asked the Justice Department to investigate Trump over his handling of sensitive documents.
“The referral from the National Archives came amid recent revelations that officials recovered 15 boxes of materials from the former president’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida that were not handed back in to the government as they should have been, and that Trump had turned over other White House records that had been torn up,” the outlet claimed.
It remains unclear at this stage whether the Justice Department agreed to conduct an investigation, with a spokesperson declining to comment on the matter. The National Archives stated that they “do not comment on potential or ongoing investigations” but confirmed to Washington Post that the documents handed over by the White House “included paper records that had been torn up by former President Trump,” with some not restorable at all.
According to CNN, Trump agreed to finally return the 15 boxes of documents, which he allegedly took to his Florida estate, following a personal request from the Archives’ general counsel Gary Stern. The New York Times reports that the Archives and Records Administration discovered among the papers “what it believed was classified information.” Meanwhile, Haberman claims that the files which Trump decided to keep in Mar-a-Lago included letters from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.