House Speaker James Comer wants more information on President Joe Biden’s classified documents from the White House
House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer on Sunday blasted President Joe Biden and his team for their handling of classified documents and announced it would do so CNN‘s “State of the Union” that he is requesting additional information about the situation.
“We would never have found out about the possession of the classified documents if it weren’t for the fact that CBS did an investigation, which somehow leaked out to determine that this happened before the election,” the Kentucky Republican told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “So the administration has not been transparent about what is going on with President Biden’s possession of classified documents. And we just want equal treatment here in terms of how both former President (Donald) Trump and current President Biden are being treated with the documents issue.”
In a letter to White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain, Comer is requesting additional documents and communications related to the search of Biden’s homes and other locations by the president’s aides for classified documents, as well as the visitor’s log of the president’s Wilmington. Delaware, home from January 20, 2021 to present.
The letter comes after Biden’s aides found five additional pages of classified material at his personal residence in Wilmington on Thursday, the same day a special counsel was appointed to investigate the matter. The White House announced the discovery on Saturday.
“It is disturbing that classified documents have not been properly kept in President Biden’s home for at least six years, raising questions about who may have reviewed or had access to confidential information,” Comer wrote in the letter. “As chief of staff, you are head of the executive office of the president and you have a responsibility to be transparent with the American people on these important issues surrounding the White House’s handling of this matter.”
Tapper asked Comer Sunday if he was more concerned with the misuse of classified documents related to Democrats — a reference to the GOP response to Trump, whose Mar-a-Lago residence was searched by the FBI last summer after repeated attempts to retrieve classified Documents.
“Absolutely not,” Comer replied. “Look, we still don’t know what kind of documents President Trump had.”
“My concern is that there is such a discrepancy in how former President Trump was treated by raiding Mar-a-Lago, getting the security cameras and taking photos of documents on the ground. … That’s not equal treatment, and we’re very concerned, and here at the Justice Department, there’s a lack of confidence in House Republicans. That is the outrage.”
A separate special counsel is conducting multiple investigations into Trump’s actions, ranging from his efforts to overturn the 2020 election to his handling of classified data and deadlocks that prompted the FBI to search Mar-a-Lago.
When asked by Tapper Sunday whether he was accusing Biden or anyone on his team of breaking the law, Comer said, “We don’t know for sure yet whether they broke the law or not.”
“I will accuse the Biden administration of not being transparent. Why didn’t we hear about it on November 2 when the first batch of classified documents was discovered?” he added. “Joe Biden used as his closing argument during the midterms that Republicans posed a threat to democracy. And he cited the fact that President Trump mishandled the documents.”
In September, Biden told CBS’ 60 Minutes that Trump’s handling of documents was “completely irresponsible.”
When asked about a picture of classified documents scattered on the floor in Mar-a-Lago, Biden replied: “How that could possibly happen. How to – anyone could be so irresponsible.
A “different posture”
In a separate interview on Sunday on State of the Union, Maryland Assemblyman Jamie Raskin, Comer’s Democratic counterpart on the House Oversight Committee, was asked about the chairman’s remarks.
Raskin told Tapper that “every American has an interest in the proper handling of classified documents by the President and by every administration.”
He reiterated Comer’s calls for “equal treatment,” but argued that the Biden White House’s handling of the discovery of classified documents “represents a very different attitude than what we’ve seen with Donald Trump.”
“It’s a bit troubling to me that people who say there was no problem with what Donald Trump did, which was to defiantly refuse any cooperation in the handing over of hundreds of classified documents, are voluntarily and swiftly complaining about President Biden Exchange of a handful of upset documents they found,” he said.
“I like that this is in the hands of special counsels on both sides, and the special counsels are both trusted attorneys who I think will get to the bottom of this,” Raskin said.
South Carolina vice chairman Jim Clyburn told MSNBC on Sunday that he would like to see the White House cooperate with House Republicans’ investigations into Biden, but only to the extent that House Republicans are investigating Trump.
He said that “talking about investigating these issues with Joe Biden and ignoring everything that happened with Donald Trump is ridiculous.”
“I think everyone can see the stark differences between what Joe Biden is being searched for and what is being investigated for Donald Trump,” the South Carolina Democrat said, later adding, “In both of these incidents, there are nothing analogue.”
Clyburn said it was “appropriate” for Attorney General Merrick Garland to appoint a special counsel.
“However, what we need to do is get this investigation to the bottom of this and let’s move on. As far as I can see there is no crime here,” he said.
CNN previously reported that classified material found in Biden’s private office included some top-secret files labeled “sensitive compartmentalized information” used for highly sensitive information obtained from intelligence sources. According to a source familiar with the matter, those documents contained memos and intelligence materials from US intelligence agencies that covered subjects including Ukraine, Iran and the United Kingdom.
On Saturday, Biden’s personal attorney attempted to explain why he and other members of the president’s team have not reported widely on the discovery of classified documents or records.
“The President’s personal attorneys have attempted to balance the importance of public transparency, where appropriate, with the established norms and limitations needed to protect the integrity of investigations,” Bob Bauer said in a statement. “These considerations require avoiding the public release of details relevant to the investigation while it is ongoing.”
(The CNN Wire & 2022 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.)
https://abc7.com/president-joe-biden-classified-documents-incident-house-oversight-james-comer/12707551/ House Speaker James Comer wants more information on President Joe Biden’s classified documents from the White House