Merrick Garland says DOJ has treated Biden no better than Trump over classified documents

Merrick Garland says DOJ has treated Biden no better than Trump over classified documents

  • US News
  • January 24, 2023
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Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday denied that the Justice Department treated President Joe Biden more leniently than former President Donald Trump for misusing classified documents.

Speaking to a roundtable of his department’s Reproductive Task Force, Garland said the DOJ treats issues equally based on a “set of norms and practices.”

“Among other things, that means we don’t have different rules for Democrats or Republicans, no different rules for the powerful and the powerless, no different rules for the rich or for the poor,” Garland said. “We apply facts and law neutrally and impartially. We always do, and we do in the matters to which you refer.”

Garland this month appointed Robert Hur as a special counsel to investigate classified documents found in Biden’s former Washington office and at his Delaware home.

The FBI searched Biden’s Wilmington home for 13 hours Friday and found six other classified documents from his Senate and vice presidency years. Agents also took handwritten notes from Biden when he was vice president.

A separate special counsel is investigating a trove of classified documents found at Trump’s Florida resort after he left the White House.

The two cases show significant differences. Biden has worked with the Justice Department and the National Archives, and voluntarily gave the FBI access to this home to conduct a thorough search. Trump resisted handing over documents requested by the archives, leading to a court-approved search warrant and an FBI search. The number of documents found in Trump’s possession was far greater than in Biden’s.

Trump has denied wrongdoing and has suggested FBI agents place documents at his club, likening the agents to Nazi Germany’s secret police.

Biden said the documents found in his possession were “put in the wrong place” and “there’s nothing there.”

When asked if he regretted the department’s handling of the two cases, Garland replied that the DOJ’s role is to follow the facts and the law and make decisions “in an impartial and neutral manner, without regard to it.” who the subjects are. ”

“We have done that in each of these cases. And we will continue to do so,” he added.

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