MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell on Tuesday pointed out how he believes lawyers for Donald Trump have “stepped in it” with their use of a single word in their latest filing, an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to stop the review of classified documents that were recovered from the former president’s Mar-a-Lago home.
Trump’s legal team “made the mistake of using a word that they have not used before,” said “The Last Word” anchor.
That word: possession.
“In describing Donald Trump’s relationship to these documents, after saying in their Supreme Court appeal tonight, once again, that this case is, ‘essentially a document storage dispute,’ the Trump lawyers, on page 30, went on to say ‘the Government has sought to criminalize President Trump’s possession and management of his own personal and presidential records,’” O’Donnell explained.
“Possession of those records is a crime,” he added.
Read the full filing on the Supreme Court website.
Trump’s lawyers had until now appeared to have avoided the term, said O’Donnell.
“Everywhere else in their filing, they refer to a former president’s legal right to access to their presidential records and that is true ― the law requires that those records be in the government’s possession while former presidents have access to them,” O’Donnell continued.
“In every filing the Trump lawyers have made in this case, they have been trying to suggest that possession of the documents by the former president is perfectly legal without ever using the word possession,” he added. “But tonight, they did.”
Watch the video here:
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.