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Special counsel report says Biden shouldn't be charged with any crimes over mishandling of classified documents

Special counsel report says Biden shouldn't be charged with any crimes over mishandling of classified documents
Joe Biden
President Joe Biden speaks to a crowd during the South Carolina Democratic Party First in the Nation Celebration and dinner at the state fairgrounds on January 27, 2024, in Columbia, South Carolina.Sean Rayford/Getty Images
  • In 2022, Biden's team found classified documents in an office outside the White House.

  • Further investigation revealed he also stored documents in his garage in Delaware.

  • A special counsel appointed by the attorney general did not recommend charges against the president.

In a newly released report, US special counsel Robert Hur chided President Joe Biden for his handling of classified documents but said he shouldn't be charged with any crimes.

"We conclude that no criminal charges are warranted in this matter," the report said at the beginning of its executive summary. "We would reach the same conclusion even if Department of Justice policy did not foreclose criminal charges against a sitting president"

The report also noted that Biden's age and apparently memory issues played a factor in the decision not to recommend charges.

In January 2023, months after the Department of Justice began its investigation into whether former President Donald Trump broke the law by retaining classified documents after leaving office, Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Hur to launch a separate, similar investigation into Biden after documents were found in the president's garage and non-White House office space.

A federal grand jury in Florida ultimately indicted Trump in June 2023, charging him with 37 felony counts and alleging he made false statements to investigators and mishandled documents.

As the New York Times noted, a key distinction between the two presidents' cases appears to be in their willingness to comply with investigators.

In Trump's case, he reportedly pushed back against the National Archives and Records Administration's inquiries into missing classified documents, ultimately never returning the entirety of the requested material, leading to the FBI raiding his Mar-a-Lago home in Florida.

Biden's team, however, proactively reached out to NARA after discovering classified documents in an office of his away from the Capitol and have reportedly cooperated with the federal investigation.

Though neither the Democratic nor Republican Party has finished its primary season just yet, Biden and Trump are each massively leading the pack in their respective party's presidential primary race.

Read the original article on Business Insider