President Joe Biden is living the axiom that warns people who live in glass houses against throwing stones.
The president has repeatedly blasted his predecessor, Donald Trump, for removing classified documents from the White House and storing them in his home. He applauded the raid on Trump’s Florida estate that yielded boxes of documents seized by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Recent revelations show the current president has kept classified documents in at least three separate locations.
During an episode of the CBS program “60 Minutes” that aired in September, Scott Pelley asked Biden about the classified documents seized from Mar-a-Lago.
“How that could possibly happen,” responded Biden. “How one — anyone could be that irresponsible. And I thought What data was in there that may compromise sources and methods? By that I mean names of people who helped or th– et cetera. And it just– totally irresponsible.”
Two months after that interview, Biden attorneys reportedly found classified documents at the Penn Biden Center in Washington, D.C. The documents discovered November 2 were reportedly turned over to the National Archives the following day. Unanswered to this point is why the document discovery that occurred one week before the November midterm was not revealed until a January CBS report.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre repeatedly rebuffed requests for more information about classified documents discovered in President Biden’s possession.
“Again, I’m not going to get into the details,” Jean-Pierre told reporters Wednesday during a White House press briefing. “I’m not going to get beyond what the president shared yesterday. He laid out what he knew, when he knew it. He laid out how important it is. He sees it serious- — very seriously, when it comes to taking classified documents and information.”
Another discovery of classified documents were later found in a box stored in the garage of Biden’s Wilmington, Delaware home. A third notice was given that additional classified documents were reportedly found in another room of the residence near the garage.
Biden addressed the issue of his retention of classified documents during a White House press briefing.
“What were you thinking?” asked Fox News reporter Peter Doocy about storing the documents next to his Corvette.
“My Corvette is in a locked garage,” the president testily responded, “so it’s not like they were sitting out on the street.”
Biden’s attorney describes the documents found as “inadvertently misplaced,” which does not seem supported by known facts.
It is unlikely Trump gave Biden the classified documents when he became president January 20, 2017. Clearly, Biden removed them from the White House sometime during his tenure as vice president. He and former President Barack Obama left office in January 2017.
Documents removed by the former vice president have been discovered in at least three separate locations.
The Penn Biden Center’s Washington office was officially opened February 8, 2018, according to the university’s website. Documents found at the campus think tank had to have been carried there more than one year after Biden left office. Locking them in a closet makes it evident basic steps were taken to provide some security, which is not how last week’s cafeteria menu is treated.
A box of classified documents in Biden’s garage and at least one more in the library of his Wilmington home indicate the material was moved more than once.
Some documents went to the office at Penn Biden and some to Biden’s residence and garage, George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley noted in a Fox News interview.
“What explained this division if it was not based on what the then vice president was working on?” Turley questioned. He believes the answer to that question undermines an “inadvertent” defense.
“Moreover, if Biden worked off any of these documents for his book (which dealt with some of the underlying subjects like Ukraine), the inadvertent defense is not only shattered but could be cited later as an effort to deceive the public,” Turley remarked.