'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by mister_coffee »

Right now what I want to know is if any other ex-president or vice-president is inadvertently holding classified materials amongst their personal papers.

All politicians I've ever met are serious packrats and have boxes and boxes of documents from their careers, often going back to their teenage years.

I'm doubtful the President or Vice President pack up their office when they move out, so I'm guessing that a bunch of staffers in a great hurry go through all of the documents and decide which ones should go to the National Archives and which ones should just go. Obviously they make a lot of mistakes. At this point I'd bet that every ex-president and ex-vice president has some classified documents in their possession which aren't where they should be.

The fact that Pence had several classified documents at home speaks to a larger problem, and also highlights how Trump's situation is different than what we are discovering with Pence and Biden.

So under the current conditions we are going to need more Special Counsels.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by mister_coffee »

Jingles wrote: Tue Jan 24, 2023 6:11 pm ...
As far as Bidens many decades of service to this country yes he spent 50+ years in Congress but accomplished nothing except collect a paycheck which he never did in civilian life
Actually that is false. He clerked for a couple of law firms, worked as a public defender, and founded his own law firm before running for office in about 1970. So please Do Your Own Research.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by Jingles »

just-jim wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 8:57 pm Yeah, like I said….

If you can’t understand the difference between running a Stop sign and getting pulled over for having a broken tail light…..and a double homicide while driving 60 in a School zone, stoned, on the wrong side of the road with a naked hooker on your lap - then I guess I can’t help you, Vern.

Everything is black and white in Q-publican world, isn’t it?

Joe Biden’s many decades of service to this country speaks for itself.
Yes everything is black and white either legal or illegal, and when you start making exceptions for some you need to make exceptions for all or do away with the law. Having been in the military for 22 years I am well aware of the requirements for handling classified material, (from classified to Top Secret,)and taking the material out of a secure location is a violation of security procedures and may heaven have mercy on your soul because you are going to jail did not matter if you were an E1 or an O8
As far as Bidens many decades of service to this country yes he spent 50+ years in Congress but accomplished nothing except collect a paycheck which he never did in civilian life
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by mister_coffee »

Jingles wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 8:46 am Matters not if any damage might of been done in both cases possessing classified documents outside a secure area is violation of security protocol and illegal
So Mike Pence goes to prison along with Joe and Donald?
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by just-jim »

Yeah, like I said….

If you can’t understand the difference between running a Stop sign and getting pulled over for having a broken tail light…..and a double homicide while driving 60 in a School zone, stoned, on the wrong side of the road with a naked hooker on your lap - then I guess I can’t help you, Vern.

Everything is black and white in Q-publican world, isn’t it?

Joe Biden’s many decades of service to this country speaks for itself.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by Jingles »

just-jim wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 7:28 pm .
huh?

Documents found at Joes house and he willingly complied with every request….

guilty donnie - the orange sh*tstain on 240 years of democracy - TOOK the doccuments away. Then STONEWALLED their return. Then, tried to put investigators off the trail, both publicly and privately. THEN had his lawyers attest - wrongly - to lies. And Joe didn’t show them around to his Russian pals. And they weren’t laying on the floor, unguarded. And we are talking about about a few documents vs 1000’s.

Sorry if your ability to discern gradations is broken…..

oh….just a reminder about relative mental state…..again.
.

84B810F1-155C-4AAE-9E46-EC1351805DCD.jpeg
So a criminal cooperating when caught excuses the crime being committed yep sounds like a case of do as I say not as I do. But wait I guess I'm being unfair to a senile old washed up politician that did not do a d--m thing the 52 years he was Senator
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by just-jim »

.
huh?

Documents found at Joes house and he willingly complied with every request….

guilty donnie - the orange sh*tstain on 240 years of democracy - TOOK the doccuments away. Then STONEWALLED their return. Then, tried to put investigators off the trail, both publicly and privately. THEN had his lawyers attest - wrongly - to lies. And Joe didn’t show them around to his Russian pals. And they weren’t laying on the floor, unguarded. And we are talking about about a few documents vs 1000’s.

Sorry if your ability to discern gradations is broken…..

oh….just a reminder about relative mental state…..again.
.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by Jingles »

mister_coffee wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 12:08 pm
Jingles wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 8:46 am ...
Matters not if any damage might of been done in both cases possessing classified documents outside a secure area is violation of security protocol and illegal
Actually the law says it is illegal if you do so willfully.

I also think (and I think most sane people also think) that there is a heck of a difference between inadvertently having some classified documents in your possession and deliberately taking some home, refusing to return them, and then lying about it.

I also think (and again I think most people would agree) that someone who actually compromises national security by mishandling classified documents should have the book thrown at them. That's why the security review is relevant.

The other end of this mess is that starting in late 2020 or early 2021, a lot of spies handled by the CIA started turning up with a serious case of dead. Now as far as I know we have no idea why, but one way or the other we damned well ought to find out.
I suppose you could say Dementia Joe took classified documents home inadvertently due to diminished cognitive status. therefore as per what the dems and MSM will put forth his actions should be overlooked. And yes those that compromise national security should have the book thrown at them but will never happen to a Democrat and if in fact the documents are from when he was a Senator tells me he has been a crooked politican long before he played the part of a VP
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by mister_coffee »

Jingles wrote: Mon Jan 23, 2023 8:46 am ...
Matters not if any damage might of been done in both cases possessing classified documents outside a secure area is violation of security protocol and illegal
Actually the law says it is illegal if you do so willfully.

I also think (and I think most sane people also think) that there is a heck of a difference between inadvertently having some classified documents in your possession and deliberately taking some home, refusing to return them, and then lying about it.

I also think (and again I think most people would agree) that someone who actually compromises national security by mishandling classified documents should have the book thrown at them. That's why the security review is relevant.

The other end of this mess is that starting in late 2020 or early 2021, a lot of spies handled by the CIA started turning up with a serious case of dead. Now as far as I know we have no idea why, but one way or the other we damned well ought to find out.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by Jingles »

Latest discovery of documents in Dementia Joe's garage go back to when he was a Senator. Waiting to see if same standards apply to Sleepy Basement dwelling Joe as were set for Orangeman bad.
Matters not if any damage might of been done in both cases possessing classified documents outside a secure area is violation of security protocol and illegal
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by mister_coffee »

Honestly, the relevant piece we are missing in both cases is the damage assessment. We have to assume everything was compromised in both cases and it would be good if there was a transparent (or as transparent as possible) assessment from trusted sources that everyone could look at. In practice a lot of people are going at this in very bad faith but I do think the effort should be made.

The quantity of documents is irrelevant compared to the actual damage assessment, which we do not have for either case.

It makes it easy (at least somewhat) if one of them had a bunch of "top secret/special compartmentalized information" documents and the other one is all "sensitive" or "confidential". But we do not know that as of yet.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by PAL »

Yes, agree Rideback. Biden team handling it differently, but why do these officials have to make these dumb mistakes.
Also McCarthy supporting Santos, with his lies, makes me want to puke. It shows, lying is A-OK.
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Re: 'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Post by Rideback »

Good to see Garland appoint a Special Counsel because there needs to be accountability and the system of protecting documents needs to be upgraded. The two cases are indeed substantially different but there still is the case of one document being marked Top Secret which is concerning for national security. The Special Counsel has vowed to get to the bottom of this in a speedy and fair manner.
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'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

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'Fairness and double standards': How Biden's classified documents debacle could become a political, legal liability

Story by Michael Collins, USA TODAY • 11h ago

What we know about Biden's classified documents and how the case differs from Trump

Revelations that classified documents going back to President Joe Biden’s years as vice president have been found in his private office in Washington and a garage at his home in Wilmington, Delaware, are threatening to become a political – and possible legal – liability for the president.

Biden said he was “surprised” to learn of the discovery of the records. He had branded his predecessor, Donald Trump, "irresponsible" for storing classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

But Biden’s own handling of classified materials is now under scrutiny given the revelations that documents were stored at his private office and garage.

Here are four ways in which the documents debacle could become a headache for Biden:

‘Congress has to investigate this’
Emboldened by a new majority and armed with subpoena power, House Republicans were already gearing up for a series of investigations into the Biden family’s finances and Biden’s son Hunter.

The discovery of the classified documents opens up a new line of inquiry – one they are eager to exploit.

“I think Congress has to investigate this,” House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Thursday.

“Here’s an individual that sat on ‘60 Minutes,’ that was so concerned about President Trump’s documents locked in behind, and now we find that this is a vice president keeping it for years out in the open for different locations,” McCarthy said.

The White House confirmed Monday that a number of classified documents from Biden’s years as vice president had been discovered in a box in a storage closet connected to a Washington office that Biden used prior to his presidential campaign. The documents were immediately turned over to the National Archives and Records Administration, the White House said.

On Thursday, the White House acknowledged that a second batch of classified documents discovered by aides was recovered from the garage of his home in Wilmington, Delaware. The new set of documents, described as small, were returned to the National Archives and the Justice Department was alerted, said Richard Sauber, a special counsel to the president.

President Joe Biden classified documents: What we know and how discovery compares to Trump

Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., the new chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, set things in motion for an investigation even before the White House disclosed the second batch of records had been found.

Comer sent a letter to the White House on Tuesday putting the administration on notice that his panel would be investigating what he called Biden’s “failure to return vice-presidential records – including highly classified documents.”

“The committee is concerned that President Biden has compromised sources and methods with his own mishandling of classified documents,” Comer wrote.

Another Republican-led committee is also demanding answers.

Rep. Mike Turner, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, sent letters to Attorney General Merrick Garland and Avril Haines, director of national intelligence, requesting a classified briefing on Jan. 23 on the discovery of the records at the two Biden locations.

The presence of classified information at the two locations “could implicate the president in the mishandling, potential misuse and exposure of classified information,” Turner wrote.

Turner also questioned why Biden, as vice president, maintained custody of highly classified documents, who had access to them and for what purposes. “The question of further dissemination of these documents … must be fully examined,” he wrote.

In the Senate, Republican Sens. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin demanded answers from Biden’s attorney, Richard Sauber, about the president’s compliance with federal records storage and archival requirements.

The GOP senators sent a letter to Sauber on Wednesday asking which documents were marked classified, why the office space was being vacated and a list of other locations where Biden may have stored records as vice president.

“In light of the recent news regarding the inappropriate storage of classified documents, the White House must immediately provide transparency relating to then-Vice President Biden’s archiving of records,” the senators said.

Classified documents: Attorney General Merrick Garland taps special counsel to probe Biden classified documents

Justice Department’s awkward position
Questions over how Biden handled classified documents complicate matters for the Justice Department and for Garland, who must decide whether to file criminal charges against Trump for keeping classified records at his private resort.

The two cases are different.

Trump kept more than 11,000 documents at Mar-a-Lago after he left the White House and resisted returning them despite repeated requests from the National Archives under the Presidential Records Act. The FBI seized the records during a search of the estate last August for evidence of violations of the Espionage Act or obstruction of justice. About 100 of the documents seized were classified.

The exact number of classified documents discovered in Biden’s private office and garage has not been made public, but Biden’s attorneys have described the number as small. The records were turned over to the archives immediately after they were discovered, the White House says.

On Thursday, Garland appointed a special counsel, Robert Hur, to further review the handling of classified documents found at Biden’s former office space and at his home in Wilmington, Delaware. Hur is a former U.S. attorney in Maryland and served as a principal associate deputy attorney general during the Trump administration.

Garland’s decision followed Republican lawmakers’ demands that he names a special counsel to investigate Biden’s handling of the records, just as he appointed a special counsel in November to oversee pending criminal investigations related to Trump.

Appearing on Fox News ahead of Garland’s announcement, Sen. Lindsay Graham, R-S.C., urged the attorney general to name a special counsel to investigate Biden’s handling of the documents with the same tenacity that Garland sought to investigate Trump.

Many Americans are “disgusted with the standard that exists in America when it comes to conservatives and everybody else,” Graham said.

The final decision on whether to file criminal charges against Trump rests with Garland. The revelations about Biden’s handling of classified documents puts the attorney general in the awkward position of possibly pressing charges against Trump while, at the same time, his boss’s own actions are in question.

The Trump investigation: Department of Justice special counsel issues subpoenas in Trump probes

'A political debating point'
From a political standpoint, questions about Biden’s handling of classified documents could not come at a more inconvenient time.

Biden ended 2022 with a pile of late-year victories, his approval rating had started to tick back up, and he is expected to announce in the coming weeks that he will run for a second term in 2024.

The documents debacle provides the GOP with a new line of attack to use against him during the upcoming campaign and makes it more difficult for him to turn the issue against Trump, who already has announced he will seek the Republican nomination for president.

“It politically neutralizes the Mar-a-Lago issue, and everyone knows it,” said Scott Jennings, a GOP strategist who worked as an aide to Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and in the White House for President George W. Bush.

“Biden scolding Trump over it last year when he had documents in his garage … I mean you can’t make it up,” Jennings said. “He should’ve kept his mouth shut regarding an ongoing investigation. But now and forever he has to live with his own hypocrisy."

If the Justice Department indicts Trump and not Biden, “it raises the question of fairness and double standards,” Jennings said. “Details here don’t matter as a political debating point, even if they do as a legal matter.”

'Transparency' takes a hit
On Biden’s first day in office, his press secretary at the time, Jen Psaki, vowed that the new administration would bring “transparency and truth” back to the administration.

But the discovery of the classified documents in Biden’s private office and garage – and the administration’s refusal to answer key questions about them – is testing that transparency pledge.

The first batch of documents was discovered on Nov. 2 by Biden’s attorneys as they were cleaning out a private office he used in Washington prior to his presidential campaign. The White House, however, didn’t disclose the discovery until Monday – more than two months after they had been found. What’s more, the confirmation came only after CBS News reported the discovery.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre fielded a barrage of questions about the discovery of documents during press briefings Wednesday and Thursday but offered few new details. Jean-Pierre repeated Biden’s assertion that, upon finding the records, his attorneys did what they were supposed to do by notifying the archives.

“We are committed to doing the right thing,” she insisted, emphasizing that the matter is under review by the Justice Department. “We’re doing this in the right way. And we will provide further details when it’s appropriate.”

Michael Collins covers the White House. Follow him on Twitter @mcollinsNEWS.

Contributing: USA TODAY'S Maureen Groppe and Joey Garrison and The Associated Press
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