DANIEL VAUGHAN: Trump raid haunts Democrats with Biden classified documents

 January 20, 2023

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, in an interview, President Joe Biden said, "How could that possibly happen, how could anyone be that irresponsible?" He went on to opine that Donald Trump had mishandled classified documents. Further, the existence of those documents proved Trump was "totally irresponsible."

By a long time ago, I mean September 2022 - just four months ago. Now, every other day, we learn of new classified documents that Biden had stashed away from his Vice Presidential days. The hypocrisy is readily apparent to anyone with working brain cells. A natural question from any credible journalist is easy: why were you totally irresponsible, Mr. President?

But as I wrote last week, the press is more interested in finding ways Biden's classified irresponsibility isn't as bad as Donald Trump's. They're desperate to find differences. Of course, there are differences! These are two distinct men with different documents, political parties, and offices. Differences are easy.

Pots, kettles, and politics.

Politically, however, they're the same.

Daniel Henninger at the Wall Street Journal makes a great point about the timeline. "The timeline of the Biden document tale begins on November 2 when Biden aides are said to have discovered classified papers at the Penn Biden Center, and then turned them over to the National Archives. But it seems more likely the actual timeline began on or about August 9, the day after the FBI raided former President Trump's residence at Mar-a-Lago."

He's right. November 2, 2022, isn't when these documents got discovered. That's when Biden's attorneys scrambled to the National Archives after discovering the documents. Henninger adds, "Amid the get-Trump din, a light bulb must have gone off in a Biden aide's head: What if the old man did the same thing?"

It would shock zero people if we learned that Biden's attorneys had access to those classified documents of Biden during the interview Biden spent lambasting Trump. Pot meet kettle; kettle meet pot.

Both Presidents even get their own Special Prosecutor to review their decision to keep classified documents. For all the differences the press is desperate to find in this case, they are very much the same. The conduct is similar, the questions are the same, and the politics involved are identical.

Banana Republic Democrats.

When James Madison described the threats of factions in Federalist 10, he likely had a fact scenario in his head similar to our current national melodrama. Madison said of factions, "measures are too often decided, not according to the rules of justice, and the rights of the minor party; but by the superior force of an interested and over-bearing majority..."

He wasn't talking about Joe Biden and Donald Trump, but he wasn't far off either.

Here we have a President in charge of the Executive Branch and the Justice Department, charged with investigating his predecessor and electoral foe. President Bident is also asked to investigate himself for violating the same rules he had a no-knock raid issued for with Trump.

Should the FBI and DOJ conduct a no-knock raid on Biden's various houses and property? Maybe a SWAT team should march into the White House to ensure Biden isn't "totally irresponsible" with classified documents.

These scenarios sound ridiculous because they are. Neither Biden nor the White House will receive a no-knock raid. You can point out differences between the documents all you want. Still, the elementary fact is this: Joe Biden isn't having the FBI raid himself. Nor should they! These are banana republic considerations.

Pandora's Box is Open.

Biden and Democrats set a new standard over these classified documents - a dangerous one. As I wrote at the time of the Mar-a-Lago raid, "Pandora's box is open. Executing that warrant and raiding Trump's house sets a new precedent. There will be political ramifications for years to come."

What is to prevent a Republican President from raiding Biden's house and properties for classified documents after he leaves the White House? Why would a Republican think twice about issuing such an order? These are the rules that Democrats claim they want to be enforced against their political rivals.

And make no mistake: this is about political rivals. The faux-hand-wringing over classified documents is a pretext.

The facts may vary, but the politics are the same. That's not to say the conduct of Trump and Biden is good; far from it. But there are worse things than a President keeping classified documents in his archives. The weaponization of the Department of Justice, having it chase after political rivals, is an anathema to a healthy and free democracy.

The genie must get crammed back into the bottle. Both parties need to come to a resolution on these kinds of investigations and fast. The Department of Justice and classification law can't become a playground for witch hunts to derail every politician from living in the White House or working in Congress.

Democrats opened Pandora's Box. They need to help close it back up; otherwise, the longer this goes, the worse it'll get.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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