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National Archives tells House committee records from Trump still missing

Former U.S. President Donald Trump makes remarks at the White House Conference on American History in observance of Constitution Day at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., on September 17, 2020. File Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/0b2f6b188dfbf699e4678f3e04e51d58/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Former U.S. President Donald Trump makes remarks at the White House Conference on American History in observance of Constitution Day at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., on September 17, 2020. File Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 1 (UPI) -- The National Archives and Records Administration penned a letter to the House Oversight Committee on Friday revealing that it has not received certain records from the administration of former President Donald Trump.

The letter was sent to Carolyn B. Maloney, the chairwoman of the committee, after she had requested that NARA "conduct an urgent review" on September 13.

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Maloney had also requested that the National Archives seek a written certification from Trump that he has surrendered all presidential records and classified material.

"While there is no easy way to establish absolute accountability, we do know that we do not have custody of everything we should," Debra Steidel Wall, the acting archivist at NARA, wrote in the letter.

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Steidel Wall referred to comments her predecessor, David S. Ferriero, made in February noting that NARA had identified that White House staff had conducted official business using non-official electronic messaging accounts that were not copied and forwarded to the National Archives.

She added that the National Archives would consult with the Justice Department on whether to initiate an action for the recovery of records unlawfully removed from the White House.

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Steidel Wall also noted that the Justice Department in August filed a lawsuit against Peter Navarro for the recovery of official email records from his personal email account.

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NARA's letter to the House Oversight Committee is the latest development in the National Archive's long pursuit to reclaim Trump administration records, and comes after the FBI raided the former president's Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida in August.

Presidents and their immediate staff and their advisors must preserve and hand over official documents to the National Archives when they leave office under the Presidential Records Act.

"The National Archives has confirmed to the Oversight Committee that they still have not received all presidential records from the Trump White House," Maloney said in a statement to the Washington Post.

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"Presidential records are the property of the American people, and it is outrageous that these records remain unaccounted for 20 months after former President Trump left office."

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