The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a motion Friday to expedite its appeal of the appointment of a special master to review documents it obtained from former President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago property in Palm. Beach, Florida last month.
The filing comes after the United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit sided with the Justice Department in ruling that U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon erred in not removing the classified documents of the special master so that the DOJ can continue its examination.
The DOJ argues in the filing with the federal appeals court that expediting the appeal of the full appointment of a special master will serve “judicial efficiency” because a ruling in favor of the government could render unnecessary any other procedure before the special master.
The department also argues that expediting its appeal would serve the interests of justice because the special principal appointment limits the government’s ability to “justify the strong public interest” to move quickly in its criminal and national security investigation.
Under the DOJ’s proposed schedule, it would submit an opening brief by Oct. 14, Trump would respond by Nov. 4, and the department would submit a rebuttal by Nov. 11.
The 11th Circuit Court initially set the initial deadline for the government’s brief as Oct. 19, followed by Trump’s no later than Nov. 18. The DOJ should then respond before December 9.
But the department notes that any extension granted to either party could force the case to go until 2023.
The DOJ motion asserts that the appeal does not require the analysis of a detailed factual record since the parties have already been amply briefed. He pointed to the ability of the court’s three-judge panel to issue a decision on the classified documents within six days as evidence of how quickly the process can take.
The motion also says the government’s arguments about Cannon’s jurisdiction to appoint the special master and the legal viability of Trump’s privilege claims overlap “substantially” with its arguments about the classified documents. The DOJ therefore argues that it does not take the parties so long to develop their positions.
Updated at 9:07 p.m.