US President Joe Biden has caught himself in a difficult position after the alleged mishandling of classified documents and official records dating to the Obama administration. In the latest development in the situation, more classified documents were found at his Delaware home by his lawyers as per a statement by the White House on Saturday. The ‘secret’ documents were first found in November 2022 in his former offices at the Penn Biden Center in Washington from his time as Vice President. The mishandling of these documents is being investigated by a special counsel, Robert Hur, who was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland.
This case has raised questions on whether Biden’s chances of re-running for President in the 2024 elections will be dented.
Mishandling of classified information
The US Justice Department has strict rules when it comes to bringing criminal charges in cases involving the mishandling of classified information. It requires that the person intended to break the law, rather than being careless or negligent. The law that governs the illegal removal and retention of classified documents makes it a crime to “knowingly” remove classified documents and store them in an unauthorized way.
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How different are Trump and Biden’s classified documents cases
Certain reports claim that the situation with President Joe Biden is different from the investigation into the mishandling of classified documents at former President Donald Trump’s private club and residence in Florida. In Trump’s case, special counsel Jack Smith is investigating whether anyone tried to block the investigation into the retention of classified records at the Palm Beach estate. Justice Department officials have said that Trump’s representatives did not fully comply with a subpoena that sought the return of classified records, which prompted agents to return to the home with a search warrant to collect additional materials. However, it is unclear if Trump’s case is worse than Biden’s.
The recent revelation about the mishandling of classified documents by President Joe Biden’s team has caused frustration among his allies and advisors because they had expected the president and his team to handle such matters better.
(With inputs from Reuters)
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