Biden lawyers find additional classified documents at Wilmington residence
Lawyers for President Biden have discovered additional classified documents from his time as vice president at Biden’s Wilmington, Del., residence, the White House confirmed Thursday.
Richard Sauber, special counsel to the president, said in a statement that attorneys for Biden searched the president’s Delaware residences in Wilmington and Rehoboth Beach after 10 classified documents were found at Biden’s old office in Washington, D.C. The search was completed on Wednesday night and turned up a “small number of additional Obama-Biden Administration records with classified markings.”
“All but one of these documents were found in storage space in the President’s Wilmington residence garage,” Sauber said. “One document consisting of one page was discovered among stored materials in an adjacent room. No documents were found in the Rehoboth Beach residence.”
Lawyers immediately notified the Justice Department of the discovery, Sauber said, and arranged for the documents to be turned over to the agency.
“The White House will continue to cooperate with the review by the Department of Justice,” Sauber said.
Speaking to reporters a short time after the statement went out, Biden said his lawyers discovered a small number of documents with classified markings in file cabinets in his home, indicating at least one of the documents was in his personal library. He also indicated the documents were found in a garage that had been locked, which also housed his Corvette.
“As I said earlier this week, people know I take classified documents and classified materials seriously,” Biden told reporters on Thursday. “I also said we’re cooperating fully and completely with the Justice Department’s review.”
“We’re going to see all of this unfold. I’m confident,” Biden said, stopping as reporters began shouting additional questions.
The disclosure of additional classified documents found at Biden’s home comes three days after the White House acknowledged lawyers found roughly a dozen sensitive government documents at an office Biden used in Washington while working as an honorary professor for the University of Pennsylvania.
Biden’s team found those documents on Nov. 2, 2022, six days before the midterm elections, but the discovery was only made public this week through news reports. The classified documents reportedly included materials related to Ukraine, the United Kingdom and Iran, and they were mixed in with boxes containing personal items such as information about Beau Biden’s funeral.
The president has said he was surprised to learn that lawyers found the documents and that he did not know what was in them. He emphasized that he takes the handling of classified documents seriously.
But the revelation that additional documents were found at a separate location is certain to fuel criticism from Republicans, who in recent days suggested there was a double standard over the intense scrutiny former President Trump is facing over his handling of classified documents.
The FBI searched Trump’s Florida residence in August, finding hundreds of sensitive government documents, including some marked “top secret.”
Trump repeatedly stymied attempts by the National Archives to retrieve the documents, which he took with him upon leaving the White House in January 2021. The Presidential Records Act requires presidents and vice presidents to maintain documents and turn them over to the National Archives for preservation.
Biden’s team has emphasized their cooperation with the National Archives and Justice Department following the discovery of the classified documents, and the president’s allies have noted the number of classified documents found in Biden’s office was much smaller than the amount recovered by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago.
Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed a special counsel last year to handle investigations into Trump, including one focused on his handling of classified materials.
Garland is scheduled to make an announcement later Thursday afternoon.
Updated at 11:02 a.m.