We Now Have the White House’s Version of the Story. It Ain’t Good.

New York Daily News Archive/New York Daily News

We now have the first explanation from the Trump side about what happened in Dr. Bornstein’s records. The explanation is different. But it raises some big questions, some big legal questions on it’s own. According to CNN: A source very familiar with what happened “said that the doctor overreacted, made a very big deal about the question and then couldn’t get his photo copy machine to work.”

Full video after the jump.

It’s certainly different from what Bornstein described to NBC. But the description of Bornstein’s reaction and the fact that Schiller left with the originals does not make it sound like this was a standard interaction. It sounds much more like they came in with demands. Bornstein freaked out. He was flustered enough that he was having a hard time making photo copies and Schiller left with the originals. Did Bornstein give his permission? Again, it doesn’t sound that different.

Late Update: What’s been unclear to me as this story has unfolded is that I hadn’t seen any specific statement from Bornstein about whether he gave permission for Schiller et al. to remove the original records. It’s implied. But it wasn’t totally clear in the stories. Now there’s this report from CNN that leaves no doubt as to what he claims. He says he was robbed and actually that the group appeared to force their way into the office.

From more reporting, my sense is that the HIPAA issue is secondary. Presumably the group was acting on Trump’s behest, at least he would probably say they were after the fact. But the original medical records are clearly Bornstein’s. There doesn’t seem to be any question of that. They barged in and took them without permission. That is robbery.