House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Thursday said that Congress is obligated to investigate President Biden’s handling of classified documents, comparing it to the Justice Department’s criminal probe of former President Donald Trump.
Mr. McCarthy said that the probe could be a job for the Republicans’ new “weaponization of the federal government” subcommittee.
“I see it could go from that committee or others, but I think Congress has to investigate this,” Mr. McCarthy, California Republican, told reporters at the Capitol. “We don’t think there needs to be a special prosecutor, but I think Congress has a role.”
The speaker said the situations were similar, brushing aside several differences between Mr. Trump’s case and the Biden matter. Mr. Trump had stonewalled investigators’ efforts to retrieve classified documents stored at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, while Mr. Biden’s legal team said they immediately turned over their documents to the National Archives.
“From one standpoint they knew the documents were there – they actually asked President Trump to put another lock on it, so they were locked,” McCarthy said, adding that Biden “utilized the Justice Department to raid President Trump.”
When asked why it isn’t a priority to investigate Mr. Trump’s alleged mishandling of classified documents, Mr. McCarthy kept focus on the FBI’s search of the former president’s home.
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The White House announced Thursday that a second batch of classified documents from Mr. Biden’s tenure as vice president was found in the garage at his home in Wilmington, Delaware.
During the search, Mr. Biden’s lawyers discovered “a small number” of additional materials with classified markings. All but one of these documents were found in a storage space in Mr. Biden’s garage, said Richard Sauber special counsel to the President. Another document, consisting of one page, was discovered among stored materials in an adjacent room.
The first batch of Obama-era documents was found in Mr. Biden’s former office by his lawyers in November. The lawyers were packing files at Mr. Biden’s former office at the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement in Washington, a think tank where Mr. Biden had an office from 2017 through 2020.
Officials described the documents found at the Penn Biden Center as “a small amount,” but did not disclose what kind of information.