President Donald Trump in East Room of the White House in Washington.
Leah Millis | Reuters
The Supreme Court late Wednesday afternoon rejected a request by former President Donald Trump to block White House records from being sent to a House select committee investigating the January 6 Capitol riot.
Trump had lost efforts in two lower federal courts to block the panel from getting more than 700 pages of documents from the National Archives, which stores the records.
He had argued unsuccessfully in those courts that he had the authority as a former president to invoke executive privilege to prevent disclosure of the records.
President Joe Biden had declined to invoke executive privilege for the records.
In its decision Wednesday, the Supreme Court said that “the questions whether and in what circumstances a former President may obtain a court order preventing disclosure of privileged records from his tenure in office, in the face of a determination by the incumbent President to waive the privilege, are unprecedented and raise serious and substantial concerns.”
But the court noted that the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit “had no occasion to decide these questions because it analyzed and rejected President Trump’s privilege claims ‘under any of the tests [he] advocated.”
“Because the Court of Appeals concluded that President Trump’s claims would have failed even if he were the incumbent, his status as a former President necessarily made no difference to the court’s decision,” the Supreme Court said.
Of the nine Supreme Court justices, only Justice Clarence Thomas would have granted Trump’s application for an injunction blocking the release of the records to the select committee.
This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.