Biden responds to backlash over classified documents scandal

January 14, 2023

In a new report from CNN, former and current Biden administration officials appear to place the blame for the classified documents scandal that President Joe Biden has found himself at the center of on the National Archives. 

The officials cited by CNN do their best to make it appear as though Biden not only didn't do anything wrong but that he was actually the victim.

Not treated with "high regard"

In its report, CNN, using former and current Biden administration officials, attempts to put together a narrative for how the classified documents ended up in Biden's possession.

The report reads:

Biden’s office dealt directly and separately with the National Archives to ensure the vice president’s records were turned over, according to a former administration official. While the National Archives sends staff members to the White House to gather files and papers of the President, they do not treat all vice presidential papers with the same high regard, officials said.

CNN continues:

Staff members from the vice president’s office are often left to sort through papers themselves, officials say, rather than specialists from the Archives. While classified documents hold the same level of secrecy for presidents, vice presidents and anyone with proper security clearance to handle them, officials say, it would be easier for papers outside the Oval Office to be mixed up or left behind.

These basic ideas are then used to construct a narrative to explain away the fact that Biden has improperly had classified documents in his possession.

The essential narrative is that it was a chaotic time, not the most qualified people were on the job, and documents ended up in Biden's possession that shouldn't have ended up in his possession.


Classified documents were found at Biden’s vice-presidential office in the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement in Washington on Nov. 2.

Richard Sauber, a special counsel to the president, claims that the documents were found when the attornies “were packing files housed in a locked closet to prepare to vacate office space at the Penn Biden Center in Washington, D.C.”

More classified documents have been found at other locations, including Biden’s residence in Wilmington, Delaware.

Altogether 20 classified documents have reportedly been found, and, of those 20 documents, 10 were marked as top secret - the highest level.

Investigations are underway

Biden and his people have been doing their best to explain this situation away. This report from CNN will help with that effort.

Biden has especially been trying to differentiate this situation from the classified documents situation involving former President Donald Trump, which saw the FBI raid on Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort. According to Biden, the key point of difference is that he has cooperated with federal authorities whereas Trump has not.

An investigation is underway. But, critics remain skeptical about whether the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is going to hold Biden to the same standard as Trump. Accordingly, House Republicans have launched an investigation of their own into the matter.

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