The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration said on Friday that former President Barack Obama did not take classified documents from the White House as former President Donald Trump said in a baseless claim on social media after the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) executed a search warrant at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida.
Trump was in New York seen leaving Trump Tower at the time FBI agents arrived at his Mar-a-Lago club and residence to search for classified documents that authorities said they worried would cause grave danger to U.S. national security if they fell into the wrong hands.
On Thursday, Trump wrote on his Truth Social media platform, "What happened to the 30 million pages of documents taken from the White House to Chicago by Barack Hussein Obama?" He said, "He refused to give them back!"
On Friday, Trump repeated the baseless claims after the FBI search warrant was unsealed by a judge at the request of U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland and without objection from Trump and his lawyers.
After the FBI search warrant was unsealed to dispel any possible conspiracy theories, it was revealed that the Department of Justice and the FBI were searching for classified documents, with some related to nuclear weapons.
Trump wrote in another message, "President Barack Hussein Obama kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified." He said, "How many of them pertained to nuclear? Word is, lots!"
The National Archives released a statement rejecting Trump's claims writing that the archives "assumed exclusive legal and physical custody" at the time he left office, Axios reported. The statement said former President Obama "has no control over where and how" the documents are stored or kept.
The National Archives corrected former President Trump, writing that while 30 million pages of unclassified documents were moved to a facility in Chicago, those documents were moved from the Obama administration's custody at the White House to a facility that the National Archives maintains, the New York Times reported.
The archives said the documents that went to Chicago are unclassified, and any classified documents remain at a facility in Washington, D.C.