Confidential government documents found at Joe Biden’s home

US President Joe Biden

Most recently, secret documents had already appeared in a privately used office owned by Joe Biden.

(Photo: Reuters)

Washington Confidential US government documents have been discovered in the home of President Joe Biden in Delaware. The documents came from Biden’s time as vice president, the White House announced on Thursday.

The “small number” of documents were discovered in a storage area in Biden’s Wilmington garage, said Biden’s legal counsel, Richard Sauber. A document was found in an adjacent room. For Biden, the situation is politically extremely sensitive, because his predecessor Donald Trump caused a scandal in the summer with a similar case.

It was only made public on Monday that Biden had kept secret documents from his time as US Vice President Barack Obama in his private offices in the Penn Biden Center in the capital Washington. The documents were discovered in November shortly before the midterm elections. The media finally made this public.

As a result, Biden employees searched other locations for government documents, the broadcaster CNN reported on the recent discovery. A second tranche was found.

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On Wednesday, the White House dodged critical questions about the first find, citing ongoing investigations by the Justice Department. Spokeswoman Karina Jean-Pierre did not answer questions during a news conference about who had brought the documents to Biden’s office.

The first find in November reportedly included at least 10 classified papers, some of which were top-class classified. Biden responded with surprise at the find. He does not know who brought the documents there or what they contained. At the same time, the Democrat promised “full cooperation” in the investigations.

In the US, government documents must be turned over to the National Archives. There are big differences in the classification of documents, writes the Washington Post in an analysis:

  • The lowest level is therefore “confidential”. This information could cause “damage to national security” if disclosed.
  • The next tier, according to the newspaper, is “classified” and flags documents that could cause “serious damage” to national security, such as significant military plans or intelligence operations.
  • The highest level is therefore “top secret”. It can be assumed that disclosure of these documents would cause “extraordinarily serious harm” to national security, according to the Washington Post.

The situation is reminiscent of a scandal surrounding Biden’s predecessor Donald Trump, in whose private estate Mar-a-Lago several top-secret government documents were confiscated during an FBI search in the summer. Biden had sharply criticized Trump for this.

More: Longtime Trump CFO sentenced to five months in prison

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