A majority of Americans think the appointment of a special master to see what was taken in the FBI’s search of former President Trump’s Florida residence was reasonable, according to a new poll.
A new Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey shared exclusively with The Hill found that 58 percent of respondents felt the appointment of a special master to review what the Justice Department took from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence was reasonable, compared to 42 percent who said that the FBI should be trusted to sort out documents with its own filter team.
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The poll also found 52 percent of respondents believed the Justice Department was using the warrant to carry out a fishing expedition to find other things they could use against the former president, compared to 48 percent who said that they believed officials were really seeking classified documents and presidential records.
The polling came one day after the Justice Department appealed a federal judge’s decision earlier this week to grant Trump’s request to appoint a special master to examine the documents for those covered by attorney-client privilege or executive privilege.
The federal judge’s decision requires the Justice Department to wait until the review by the special master is finished before it can continue using the documents taken from the search in their probe, but allows a national security review to continue.
Justice Department officials argued in the filing appealing the decision that the two investigations are “are inextricably intertwined” and “any delay poses significant concerns in the context of an investigation into the mishandling of classified records.”
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The Justice Department also argued that “no potential assertion of executive privilege could justify restricting the Executive Branch’s review and use of the classified records at issue here.”
The Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey was conducted between Sept. 7-8 and surveyed 1,885 registered voters. It is a collaboration of the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University and the Harris Poll.
The survey is an online sample drawn from the Harris Panel and weighted to reflect known demographics. As a representative online sample, it does not report a probability confidence interval.