Written by Hudson Crozier
What we know: Lawyers for President Joe Biden found documents marked “classified” in his private Washington office and his home in Delaware from his years as vice president. They found documents in November right before the midterms but didn’t tell the public. The media leaked the story this month.
“The president’s attorneys have attempted to balance the importance of public transparency where appropriate with the established norms and limitations necessary to protect the investigation’s integrity.” - Attorney Bob Bauer
What we don’t know: Biden said he doesn’t know what’s in the documents and was “surprised” to hear of the discovery. Attorneys have found over two dozen in total, but the search isn’t over. An anonymous source told CNN that some documents contain intelligence materials on Ukraine, Iran, and the United Kingdom.
Washington’s response: Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Robert Hur, a former federal prosecutor under President Donald Trump, as special counsel to investigate Biden’s handling of documents. House Republicans also announced a committee investigation, adding to their other probe into alleged corruption in the Biden family.
The double standard: Notably, the FBI didn’t raid Biden’s home as it did Trump’s over his alleged mishandling of classified documents. It wouldn’t be the first time the bureau protected Democrat interests during elections. Others point out that Biden, as vice president, didn’t have the same authority to declassify documents that Trump had as president, making this a potentially worse situation.
Looking ahead: Biden, Democrats, and the media capitalized off of the Trump document scandal. Biden is now in the same position, with months of probes, negative headlines, and investigations ahead, putting him in a vulnerable position for 2024.