Biden Has Done Himself No Favors

Joe Biden has in no way behaved like Donald Trump when it comes to handling classified documents. But the political damage is done—especially after Biden concealed the discovery for so long.

We need more information about the nature and number of files found at Joe Biden’s former office to determine whether the discovery is closer to a scandal or more like carelessness. But one fact has already been established: Biden’s lawyers found the classified documents from his time as Barack Obama’s vice president no later than Nov. 2, six days before the midterm elections.

The National Archives were apparently informed immediately according to regulations. But officials have kept the matter secret until now. If Biden wanted to motivate his opponents to invent new conspiracy fairy tales about him or the “deep state,” he has succeeded in his mission.

Legal Consequences Unlikely

The whole affair would barely have interested anyone had investigations not already been underway for months into Donald Trump, who took boxes of classified documents with him from the White House to his Mar-a-Lago golf club and resisted all official demands to return them — until the FBI showed up at his doorstep.

This recent incident takes on a very different dimension. All indications are that Biden does not have to fear any legal repercussions, and that has nothing to do with the fact that Merrick Garland is “his” attorney general. But for Biden and Garland, it has now become more difficult to publicly represent that the Trump investigation is legally necessary and not politically motivated.

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