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Biden Took Work Home From the Office

Biden Took Work Home From the Office

If you really want to see America’s national political divide, just check out the response to the story that President Biden took a number of top-secret documents home – and kept them for years. It is certainly ironic that Biden would be caught with purloined records in his files after responding so sanctimoniously to President Trump.

If you follow the right-leaning news, you will see equivalency between the Trump and Biden documents issues.  If you follow the left-leaning news, the differences get all the gravitas.  In fact, both sides are correct.  It is the omission of balance – recognizing the validity of the opposing argument – that is the problem.

The Case Against Biden  

Like Trump, Biden is guilty of possessing top-secret documents that he had no legal right to have in his possession.  They were removed from the White House Illegally.  The argument that those secret documents were no longer in secure places – as required by law – is valid in both cases

The fact that Trump had more documents in his possession is irrelevant.  Bank robbery is not determined by the amount of cash the thieves got away with.

As in the Trump case, the question arises as to whether there are other purloined documents in any of many locations controlled by Biden – the archives at University of Pennsylvania and University of Delaware … his home … or even in the White House.  Although, I would argue that if they were at the White House, the documents are still in the government possession.

There is still the question of why Biden had those documents.  Based on media reports, there is another layer of suspicion.  It seems the documents were related to intelligence about Ukraine.  Maybe documents that would shed unfavorable light on Hunter Biden’s activities?  Yes, that is pure speculation, but a question that needs answering.

The situation with Biden can arguably be mitigated by the fact that his lawyers discovered the documents and immediately returned them to the government.  One can legitimately wonder why there was a three-month delay in public notification of Biden’s possession.  Since the discovery was prior to the 2022 Midterm Election, the speculation that the withholding of the information from the public was politically motivated.  More legitimate questions.

Ionically, one of the more damning observations regarding Biden came from Democrat strategist David Axelrod.  Appearing on CNN, he underscored that EVERYONE in the White House was advised on the handling of government documents – especially top-secret information.  Axelrod left no wiggle room for Biden to plead ignorance.

While Biden’s political friends say, “nothing to see here,” the fact remains that the situation is worthy of investigation.  Attorney General Merrick Garland wasted no time in assigning the case to the Chicago federal prosecutor.  It seems he wanted to avoid the appearance of political prejudice since he assigned the case to a Trump appointee.

I see this as the proverbial political sweater with a number of loose threads to be pulled to see what unravels.  Biden’s claimed of cluelessness is not credible.

The Case Against Trump

The difference is not the nature of the “crime” – if that is what it is determined to be in either case.  Trump and Biden both had documents allegedly illegally removed from federal government custody without permission.

The fact that Trump resisted the return of those documents is a significant difference.  There are accusations that Trump was never forthcoming concerning an inventory of documents he possessed – and accusations that he was attempting to hide some in the face of government requests and orders to return them.

Those actions resulted in a raid on Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago – and the retrieval of hundreds of Documents.  There is also the possibility – POSSIBILITY – of obstructions charges.

None of that, however, absolves Biden of illegal possession of those top-secret documents.

Summary

What we have are two distinct cases to be investigated.  Drawing an equivalency is a political game – with no meaning legally.  In that arena, the advantage goes to Trump.  His primary political adversary now faces the same issue – and Biden has egg on his face for his harsh attacks on Trump on the very same issue.

If you accept the significant differences in Trump and Biden cases, you have to consider the General Petraeus case.  That case is more like the Biden situation.  If you recall, Petraeus took home some secret documents to aid in the preparation of his book.  He wound up paying a $40,000 fine and served out a 2-year probationary sentence.  It should be noted, however, that Petraeus was accused of lying to the FBI.

Trump may also gain an important second benefit from the Biden case.  Even though Biden appears to be in less legal jeopardy, can the Justice Department simply walk away from the Biden case and take a hard line on Trump.  That would “appear” to be politically motivated – and Garland does not like that sort of appearance.  Since he is not likely to throw the book at Biden, Garland may decide to go easier on Trump.

More often than not, these document cases are handled as civil cases – or will simply end when documents are returned.  No charges were ever filed against disgraced Congressman Anthony Weiner or his wife, Huma Abedin, who had secret State Department documents on their personal home computer – obtained when Abedin was a top aide to Secretary of state Hillary Clinton.

Of course, Biden cannot be charged while President, but that may end on January 20, 2025.  It would really be ironic if both Biden and Trump were running for President to avoid a criminal charge for the same offenses.  But that is a long shot.

So, there ‘tis.

POSTSCRPT:  The contents of the Biden government papers have just been revealed, and the Lincoln Library wants the documents back.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.

26 Comments

  1. Frank stetson

    At this point, I am with you except for a couple of your swags and omissions. Like all the places Biden nay still have them squirreled away while not asking the same questions of all those Trumpian spots, storage facilities, etc.

    Investigate all, and there is one common feature in both: it is massively strange behavior by guys who must know better. Why? At least on the top secret.

    Reply
    • Tom

      I agree Frank! And its nice to your civil post and see that you agree with Larry! I think, as you, that all of Trump’s places should be investigated though I doubt it will turn anything up and most likely will be a waste of tax payer dollars. But what the heck, both sides spend and waste money like its toilet paper. So why not waste a little more!

      Reply
  2. Grace Bruno

    First of all name the presidents that have NEVER taken any classified documents home. Might help Frank Stetson to understand Trump isn’t a thief, maybe he should turn off CNN and use his own brain. THe main point is there are two standards of law in this country. I’d love to know how it would have been handled had Trump been found with classified documents on his private server in a room in his house. THen he destroys everything on all of his devices using bleach bit, etc. He’d be in prison and Hillary is still sauntering around. So don’t tell me about Trumpian spots, this guy is a card.

    Reply
    • Tom

      I agree with you that all of these violations of the classification system should be treated the same (if that is what you are saying). I disagree with you on Frank. He does use his own delightfully marinated brain.

      Reply
      • Tom

        And by the way Grace, The United States government classification system is established under Executive Order 13526, the latest in a long series of executive orders on the topic beginning in 1951. So any POTUS that is named and who’s term ended before 1951 would be a qualified answer to your post. Before 1951, if you worked on a top secret project, you were generally locked into the facility and not allowed to leave for anything. So there was no problem. Example, the Manhattan Project. Also, The National Security Act of 1947 established CIA as an independent, civilian intelligence agency within the executive branch. And before it was CIA, it was OSS which was established as a temporary agency to gather intelligence needed to win WWII. So before WWII there wasn’t even a OSS or CIA to write these documents – so any POTUS that is named and who’s term ended before Dec 7, 1941 would be a qualified answer to your post.

        But I think the bottom line is we have this classification system now, and it is needed. So the real issue is how do we get our top leaders to stop violating a system put in place for the protection of the USA?

        Reply
    • frank stetson

      OK Grace, the fact that they may be other bank robbers does not mean the next bank robber is OK.

      One more time: investigate all, indite and convict the guilty and use the law as intended for all parties, left and right and up the middle.

      The one shining grace in this is by investigating Biden fully, all residences, hell – anywhere he has been, we can assume the same will be done for the other guy. The other guy who, by the mere position of his lying about having them, refusing to give them back, lying about what he did give back and then holding back after saying all was returned, is a thief, IMO. The fact that he FORCED his lawyer to lie for him makes him look really culpable for a crime. Hopefully not espionage, but given the open storage circumstances in a place chock full of foreigners from adversarial countries, this needs to be thoroughly investigated. If Joe’s scandal heightens that need, great. Matter of fact, perhaps that was Joe’s intent all along…….

      So yeah, Grace, check out all the places BOTH of these guys may have secreted or forgotten a top secret document. No issues here.

      The other good news is I expect Congress to tighten up the documentation rules; seems like good bipartisan fodder. Might add in a new requirement for any Congressional nominee to complete the Federal Resume with all the legal stipulations that has. Same as any Federal employee in many positions, should not be a major issue. They can call the new law: Santos Clause.

      Reply
      • Tom

        Frank, your post was enjoyable and comical both at the same time! I agree with you on investigating, indicting, and prosecuting both. And it may be an “unintended side effect” that Trump will now be equally investigated for all of his places of residence. But I do not agree that it was a Biden strategy to stash the documents and get caught so that the DOJ will more actively and thoroughly investigate Trump. While this does show demented thinking in line with his acuity and cognizance, I do not believe that our beloved POTUS would ever subscribe to the “cutting off your nose despite your face” thinking of such a strategy that you posit. I did like the Santos Clause very much. Gave me a real chuckle! Good one!

        Reply
    • Bubbelove

      And..Hillary gets a professor job at Columbia for her illegal acts (don’t forget Bengazi).

      Reply
      • frank stetson

        Never forget Benghazi? You can’t even spell it :>)

        Trump kept his job even as President.

        And Hillary has NO ILLEGAL ACTS: she’s been tested, vetted, investigated, tested again, and again. You really shouldn’t accuse after you peruse the truth. You had multiple bites and this apple and you bit off more than you can chew. Not guilty every time. Benghazi is a tragedy, but she is not culpable, at least according to Republican investigations.

        The server/email/bleach/whatever is a little more hinky, but not indictable. Makes it just like Trump’s Russian bromance. Hundreds of meetings, spies everywhere, but not prosecutable.

        Remember 9/11
        Remember 1/6/2021
        Remember Pearl Harbor —- my uncle sailed that day from San Fran to answer that call. I remember (mom telling me :>)

        Reply
        • Sam

          Was he in a queer bar in San Francisco?

          Reply
  3. Tom

    Larry, I agree with your post. When I worked with these kind of classified documents on the IUSS SOSUS Project (featured in the movie, “The Hunt for Red October”), if we were even caught attempting to remove a document from our secured area it was noted on your employment file, the DOJ was immediately informed, and generally we could expect to be unemployed by the end of the day! And it was impossible to mistake the classification because it was in big bold letters at the top of every page, and it was in a colored folder or if it was a binded document the covers were colored – with different colors for different levels of classification. I worked on mostly blue (unclass) and green (classified confidential) documents. When I have to work on yellow/orange/red documents (classifications within secret to top secret), I had to go to a special SCIF (Specially Compartmented Insulated Facility) office complex. I was not allowed to take anything in, or out. We had to sign in and out and there was a security guard at the door.

    My point is that these removed documents were not just a little error in judgement. It is a huge breakdown of the system where in order to remove the documents, one must willfully conceal and transport them, and be able to knowingly get around all of the levels of security provisions that come with these documents. And when you agree to an NSA Secret or Top Secret clearance, the punishment for violations is in the document and you must agree to that too! There is no room for accidental error or lack of knowledge mistakes in this system! It is all crystal clear!

    So I believe both POTUSes should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law just like I would have been if I had concealed and removed these kinds of documents. Had this occurred with me, I would have done some prison time after the damage assessment was completed. A fitting punishment would be to put both violators in a jail cell together for a couple of years!

    Reply
    • frank stetson

      Trump has SCIF documents, a lot of them. How can that even happen. HOUSTON: we have a problem here. Investigate that too.

      Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. I think there’s some of that going on. But how a SCIF document gets out would be a fun fact to know.

      Reply
      • Tom

        Yes I agree Frank. There was really no way that could have happened where I worked. The only way I can see that happening is if the agency responsible for real time security at the doors etc. fell down on the job and did not properly execute the personal search of brief cases etc. as the person was leaving the facility or SCIF area. In otherwords, it was a “trust system” where the status of the person taking documents over ruled the common sense of a quick and simple search, which is never good in these cases.

        Another issue that is not discussed as much is that all persons in these SCIF areas had to have high level clearances where I worked. So this brings up the issue of who might have had access to these documents without the proper clearance to view them! So that investigation also has to include anyone that may have entered the home such as family, friends, delivery persons or maintenance persons, etc. Its a big deal!!!

        Reply
  4. frank stetson

    My bet is somehow, someone brought them to the Oval Office for a meeting and then couldn’t ask for them back as Trumpie put them in a drawer, his pocket, or used them as a pot-holder for his hamburger. Of course we have many accounts of why Trump really had these documents:

    Jim Mattis said Trump is like a fifth- or sixth-grader.

    Chief of staff John Kelly called Trump an idiot and thought him unhinged. He’s not alone. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin called him an idiot as did chief of staff Reince Priebus.

    Omarosa Manigault Newman, highest-ranking Black West WIng staffer claims Trump is a racist, misogynist, bigot.

    Economic adviser Gary Cohn said Trump was dumb as shit.

    National security adviser H.R. McMaster said Trump is a dope.

    Steve Bannon said Trump was an 11-year-old child who has lost his step.

    Secretary of State Rex Tillerson called Trump a fucking moron

    McMaster said Trump was a dope with the brain of a kindergartner.

    Those might be some reasons.

    Reply
    • Tom

      I agree with all of those assessments. I also agree with Obama’s statements (if he indeed actually said them) “Never underestimate Joe’s ability to f….. things up.” and “When it comes to Joe, he doesn’t have it.” I say throw all of these hooligans out! And make them stay out!!!

      Reply
    • Candy

      I think you seriously have TDS. Please seek help.

      Reply
      • Tom

        Naaah, Frank is a good guy, very capitalist! His brain is just delightfully and liberally marinated with poetic justice sauce. I do think he has a good point about the documents, though I disagree that Trump used them for pot-holders for his hamburgers. We all know from the Select Committee hearings that Trump preferred to stick his hamburgers to the wall.

        Reply
  5. Tom

    Larry, I am writing this post so that readers understand the depth, breadth, and gravity of these types of National Security Act violations. I am going to give two examples that I personally experienced. It’s not just the potential loss of information to enemies, there are real world consequences that perhaps every day folks do not realize.

    Example 1: Toshiba

    Toshiba sold the technology to finely spin submarine shaft much more finely that Russian technology would support. The shaft is held in place by bell housings with bearings. Bearings grind more when a shaft wobles more – this creates a fingerprint or retinal kind of signature specific to the ship – no two ships are the same. This caused our program to have to recalibrate by software, all of our sensor array systems at all sites around the world. What most people may not know is this cost the American tax payer 30 million dollars and a security hole for two years where it was harder to detect them and know where they were until we fine tuned all of our software.

    Example 2: Walker Case. You may recall the case of a Warrant Officer ( this is an enlisted man or woman who has risen through the entire promotional ladder of enlisted class and have been given a commission as an officer.) Walker. He sold for $100,000 cash the secret site code names and locations of all sites in our program – this info is “compartmentalized and never used together in a document. Once the site location and code names are known, any sub skipper can avoid our nets that were talked about in the movie “Hunt for Red October”. And surface ships can avoid the nets in the same way. What most people may not know is the following: 1) 30+ million dollars to relocate the sites; 2} Federal Government pulled back many NIS Secret Clearances and those people lost their jobs because they were hired specifically to work on these programs which required these clearances. 3) Again, loss of information and ability to know where the Russian nuclear subs were because they could avoid the nets (sensor arrays on the ocean floor) just as Sean Connery did in the movie.

    The risk mitigation analysis, procedures, and recovery are very deep and wide. Heads will roll and government will most likely review who all has clearances and may pull some back which means good paying jobs lost and families damaged. In the case of CIA documents on foreign adversaries, much of this intelligence is collected through operatives in those foreign countries. They and their families may now be at risk depending on how much of this information can be verified as lost to adversaries.

    This is a much bigger deal and bigger mess than most people may realize. In both POTUS cases, there must be punishment with no partisanship. Biden should be given the option to resign (just like Tricky Dicky) or face trial and prison time. Trump should be given the same deal as Biden and not allowed to ever run for federal office again, or face trial and prison time.

    To many people and programs could be damaged and lives lost because of the flagrant violations of these two men that both think they are above the law. It is time for Congress to step up and do the right thing in both cases! It is time for right and left to come to center to protect our constitution. Period!

    Reply
  6. Luke

    As vp Biden had NO authority to remove these documents, much less to leave them unsecured. Trump has authority to declassify them. Biden as VP had none and so these documents were STOLEN, and anyone who thinks he was surprised by them being there is just blind. He was just surprised they were found and why the cover up until after mid-terms?

    Reply
    • Joe Gilbertson

      That is a good point, the President is the ultimate classifying authority. Trump declares something unclassified, it is unclassified. They Vice President has no such privileges. Biden should be charged criminally. Hillary should have been charged criminally.

      Reply
      • Tom

        Again Joe, you are wrong. You have a high rate of error in your comments. Maybe you listen to too much FOX and thoughtlessly believe all that you ingest from your FOX bible. The Obama-era 2009 Executive Order 13526 gave VP’s the privilege to classify and declassify. That EO is still in effect, and was in effect during the whole presidency of your idol Trump. It took me less than 2 minutes to look this up. Maybe you should try it sometime!

        Reply
    • Tom

      You are as wrong as Joe, classic case of blind leading the blind. Maybe you listen to too much FOX and thoughtlessly believe all that you ingest from your FOX bible. The Obama-era 2009 Executive Order 13526 gave VP’s the privilege to classify and declassify. That EO is still in effect, and was in effect during the whole presidency of your idol Trump. It took me less than 2 minutes to look this up. Maybe you should try it sometime!

      Reply
  7. frank stetson

    oh bull Joe. As I say, there is law and there is what is right and the two are not always the same. Yes, we should follow the law, investigate based on the law, and take appropriate corrective measures based on the law.

    On that, it is perfectly legal for the VP to have certain classified documents at his premises, the vp can classify and declassify documents too. According to the law. Sorry, Joe, but I think you are wrong.

    In the beginning, I thought it a nothing burger. Then they found more, then they found more locations. It’s been six years or more. Now, I think a full investigation is warranted, glad to see a special prosecutor, selected by Trump, assigned. Good.

    Then there’s what’s right.

    – there is no way you can say Trump’s declassification “system” is right and that he did not make it up after the fact.
    – there is no way you can say Trump’s obstruction, lies, and deceit are right when he hid, lied, and even forced his lawyer to lie about having more and more documents
    – there is no way you can say Biden’s clusterfuck communications on this was right, if truly innocent he should have revealed all at once and not wait until after the midterms
    – there is no way that the Archive system of no check-ins, check-outs, loose monitoring and tracking, is right. How does something go missing for so long and what about the copies (since Archives probably has a copy of all Trump/Biden documents)
    – there is no way the Presidential declassification system should be so loosey-goosey as the Archives allows. How can Trump declassify thousands of pages and not even tell anyone?

    For reasons like these, and more, I think having special prosecutors tackle this is great. And I don’t care if the current process is LEGAL, nor will I excuse it because it’s legal. That’s Joe’s thing. I say wrong is wrong and both these gents are wrong, even if legal.

    Reply
  8. RICHARD

    BIDEN IS NOT INNOCENT. BIDEN DOES NOT KNOW THE MEANING OF WORK, HE HAS NOT WORKED FOR OVER 50 YEARS. JUST LIVED OF OUR TAX MONEY AND ILLEGAL GAIN . SO STOP MAKING EXCUSES FOR THIS CORRUPT CROOK.
    HE IS PUPPET AND DESTROYING THIS COUNTRY. BUT DEMOCRATS LOVE THIS. HILLARY IS ANOTHER CROOKED POLITICIAN, YES WE REMEMBER ‘BENGHAZI” IT WAS MORE THEN A TRAVESTY. JUST LIKE BIDENS AFGHANISTAN. THEY BOTH NEED TO BE IMPEACHED LIKE HARRIS WHO IS AS BAD AS JOE WITH THE BORDER THAT HE CREATED.
    WHAT OTHER PRESIDENT IN ALL THE WORLD WOULD OPEN THEIR BORDERS AND THE TRY AND BLAME THE GOP???
    BUT BIDEN LIKE OBAMA IS PLAYING THE BLAME GAME. NO SPINE TO ADMIT THEIR MISTAKES AND THEREARE MANY. JUST LIKE BIDENS REGIME.

    Reply
  9. Leonard Collings

    Bidens so-called work was Hunter’s enterprise selling secrets to
    China, Ukraine and whoever else would buy it.

    Reply
  10. Clifford mckinney

    All investigations and allegations should be removed from trump and 100% focus should be on prosecution of as many democrats as possible

    Reply

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