(WASHINGTON) — A federal judge in Florida has dismissed former President Donald Trump’s lawsuit against his 2016 presidential challenger Hillary Clinton that accused her of “acting in concert” with top FBI leadership to invent what became known as the Russia investigation.
U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks seemingly mocked the lawsuit in his order of dismissal, calling the suit “difficult to summarize in a concise and cohesive manner.”
“It was certainly not presented that way,” the judge wrote.
Trump had argued that the Russia probe was “prolonged and exacerbated by the presence of a small faction of Clinton loyalists who were well-positioned within the Department of Justice,” a group that included defendants James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, Kevin Clinesmith and Bruce Ohr.
The judge said the lawsuit was rife with “glaring problems,” claims that were “not warranted under existing law,” and legal theories that lacked factual support.
“At its core, the problem with Plaintiff’s Amended Complaint is that Plaintiff is not attempting to seek redress for any legal harm; instead, he is seeking to flaunt a two-hundred-page political manifesto outlining his grievances against those that have opposed him, and this Court is not the appropriate forum,” the order said.
“We vehemently disagree with the opinion issued by the Court today,” Trump’s attorney, Alina Habba, said in a statement following the dismissal. “Not only is it rife with erroneous applications of the law, it disregards the numerous independent governmental investigations which substantiate our claim that the defendants conspired to falsely implicate our client and undermine the 2016 Presidential election.”
Habba said Trump’s legal team would immediately move to appeal the decision.
Trump earlier tried to move the lawsuit to a different judge in the Southern District of Florida, but was unsuccessful. That judge, Aileen Cannon, is the same Trump-appointed judge who this week granted Trump’s motion for a special master to review the Justice Department’s seizure of documents from his Mar-a-Lago estate.
Special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, completed in 2019, concluded that Russian interference in the 2016 election was “sweeping and systematic,” and the investigation led to seven guilty pleas and five jail sentences, mostly on charges of lying to investigators — but no charges were ever brought against Trump himself.
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