DOJ open to one of Trump's special master candidates

Trump's lawyers declined to specify the reasons for their rejection of DOJ candidates, citing respect for the candidates.
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Donald Trump, Aug. 6, 2022, Dallas, Texas
Donald Trump, Aug. 6, 2022, Dallas, Texas
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

The Department of Justice has signaled its openness to three of former President Donald Trump's choices to be a special master in the ongoing case involving his handling of classified materials.

Of those who Trump nominated for the role, the DOJ considers senior Judge Raymond Dearie to be a viable choice. The DOJ also nominated federal judges Barbara Jones and Thomas Griffith though Trump has rejected those choices, according to CNN. 

Dearie was appointed to the bench by former President Ronald Reagan and served as a federal judge in New York from the 1980s until his retirement in 2011, per the outlet. The DOJ expressed confidence in Dearie as a potential special master, alongside its own proposed candidates.

“Each have substantial judicial experience, during which they have presided over federal criminal and civil cases, including federal cases involving national security and privilege concerns,” DOJ prosecutors said of the selections.

Trump's lawyers declined to specify the reasons for their rejection of DOJ candidates, citing respect for the candidates.

"Plaintiff also submits it is more respectful to the candidates from either party to withhold the bases for opposition from a public, and likely to be widely circulated, pleading," they wrote, per the outlet. "Therefore, Plaintiff asks this Court for permission to specifically express our objections to the Government's nominees only at such time that the Court specifies a desire to obtain and consider that information."

U.S. District Judge Aileen M. Cannon, a Trump appointee, granted the former president's request last week to appoint a special master to independently review the materials the FBI took from his Florida estate in early August. Moreover, she halted the DOJ's own review of the documents, a decision which the agency has appealed to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.