Federal prosecutors who investigated President Joe Biden’s mishandling of classified documents declined to press charges despite discovering top-secret records in his Delaware home’s “garage, offices, and basement den.”
On Thursday, Special Counsel Robert Hur unsealed his report to the Department of Justice (DOJ), concluding “that no criminal charges are warranted in this matter” despite records found related to foreign policy in Afghanistan and handwritten notes “implicating sensitive intelligence.” Prosecutors declined to press charges, in part, because “Biden would likely present himself to the jury, as he did during our interview with him, as a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.”
“Based on our direct interactions with and observations of him, he is someone for whom many jurors will want to identify reasonable doubt,” Hur’s team wrote in the nearly 400-page report. “It would be difficult to convince a jury that they should convict him by — by then a former president well into his eighties — of a serious felony that requires a mental state of willfulness.”
Prosecutors included pictures of where the documents were discovered in Biden’s private residence.
Biden was exonerated despite false statements to federal prosecutors, who concluded that the president risked disclosing government secrets to uncredentialed people.
While Biden escapes charges for classified documents discovered across multiple locations, former President Donald Trump faces a 40-count indictment from the Justice Department over an alleged mishandling of records marked classified.
“Mr. Biden’s memory,” Hur’s report said Thursday, “appeared to have significant limitations.”
In the president’s interview with the special counsel’s office, Biden “did not remember when he was vice president,” forgetting both when his term ended and began.
“If it was 2013 — when did I stop being vice president?” the president reportedly asked in his first interview with Hur. “In 2009, am I still vice president?” Biden asked in the second.
Biden also forgot when his son, Beau, had died, “even within several years.” “And his memory appeared hazy when describing the Afghanistan debate that was once so important to him,” the report read.
The facts surrounding Beau Biden’s death have become a routine point of confusion for the president, who lost his son to brain cancer in 2015. President Biden has repeatedly claimed his son died in the Iraq War, which ended in 2011.
“My son was a major in the U.S. Army,” Biden said during a speech to troops in Japan last spring. “We lost him in Iraq.”
Biden had previously made the false claim in November of the previous year at a speech in South Florida. The president confused the war in Iraq with the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine during a talk where he was supposed to be focused on Social Security and Medicare.
“They talk about inflation … inflation is a worldwide problem right now because of a war in Iraq and the impact on oil and what Russia’s doing … excuse me, the war in Ukraine,” the president said. “I’m thinking about Iraq because that’s where my son died.”
Before that, Biden claimed Beau died in Iraq during a speech in Colorado just weeks earlier.