The White House confirmed on Monday night that President Joe Biden had voluntarily participated in an interview with the special counsel team investigating the presence of classified documents from his tenure as vice president in his office and home. This development signals significant progress in the ongoing inquiry.
The interview with President Biden was conducted at the White House on both Sunday and Monday, according to the White House. Ian Sams, a spokesperson for the administration, stated, “As we have said from the beginning, the President and the White House are cooperating with this investigation, and as it has been appropriate, we have provided relevant updates publicly, being as transparent as we can consistent with protecting and preserving the integrity of the investigation.”
The investigation into the mishandling of classified documents began last year after documents were discovered in an office used by then-former Vice President Biden, located between his time in the Obama administration and his presidential campaign. Biden’s legal team promptly reported the discovery to the National Archives and Records Administration and turned over the documents.
Additional documents were later found at President Biden’s home in Delaware, prompting Attorney General Merrick Garland to appoint Robert Hur as a special counsel in January to oversee the investigation. Unlike some other high-profile investigations, this inquiry into President Biden has unfolded with minimal public attention.
In contrast to his predecessor, former President Donald Trump, who declined to be interviewed by special counsel Jack Smith during investigations related to his efforts to influence the 2020 election, President Biden cooperated with the special counsel team.
The FBI also conducted searches at the Biden vacation home in Rehoboth, Delaware, where they discovered “some materials and handwritten notes” believed to date back to Biden’s time as vice president, as confirmed by the president’s attorney, Bob Bauer.
While it is rare for criminal investigators to interview sitting presidents, past leaders, including President Barack Obama and President George W. Bush, have been interviewed as part of sensitive investigations. President Bill Clinton was also questioned in several inquiries, including his testimony to a grand jury during the investigation into his relationship with Monica Lewinsky.
The recent interview with President Biden represents a significant development in the ongoing investigation, which may shed more light on the circumstances surrounding the mishandling of classified documents during his time as vice president.