Hur's devastating Biden report: Five key takeaways

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Special Counsel Robert Hur’s February 8 study connected President Biden’s unauthorized removal, retention, and disclosure of classified accusation is devastating successful its portrayal of Joe Biden’s: 1) willful intent and carelessness successful handling highly delicate and classified authorities materials; 2) diminished intelligence capacity; and 3) inability to show nan truth erstwhile confronted pinch his conduct. 

The president’s disastrous impromptu property conference connected nan evening of nan report’s merchandise only made matters worse. 

Here are my first takeaways since nan study was released connected Thursday:

1. The study specifications aggregate pieces of grounds showing that Biden unlawfully and willfully retained and disclosed classified materials, "after his vice presidency erstwhile he was a backstage person." When an individual willfully retains aliases discloses classified materials, he does truthful knowing that he is violating nan law. 

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2. This was damaging enough. But nan study went connected to asseverate that Biden could not beryllium successfully prosecuted for his conduct, successful ample portion because of his diminished intelligence capacity. 

This conclusion, supported by elaborate examples, has caused outrage among wide commentators, but nan study speaks for itself. Biden either remembers nan twelvemonth his boy died, aliases he is disconnected by respective years. Biden either remembers erstwhile he began and ended his vice statesmanlike term, aliases he doesn’t. 

Biden and his supporters applaud Hur’s determination to diminution prosecution, but onslaught nan cardinal rationale down that decision—Biden’s diminished intelligence capacity successful 2017, today, and whenever his presidency ends, successful 2025 aliases 2029, erstwhile he would presumably beryllium taxable to prosecution. But that canine won’t hunt.

You can’t person it some ways. You can’t crow astir your alleged exoneration while attacking arsenic "gratuitous" and "extraneous" nan very point that gets you disconnected nan hook.

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3. The study besides reveals that Biden’s explanations to Hur’s squad for his improper retention of classified documents were not credible. In different words, though Biden cooperated pinch Hur’s investigation by sitting for an question and reply and turning complete documents, he gave what are known successful criminal rule arsenic mendacious exculpatory statements to nan typical counsel’s team. This is itself grounds that Biden knew his actions were unlawful astatine nan clip he took them.

4. Biden continued to make evidently mendacious exculpatory statements successful his impromptu February 8 property conference. For example, he stated that each of nan classified documents recovered successful his location were successful locked record cabinets aliases record cabinets that could beryllium locked. This is blatantly false. Some of them were recovered successful a torn cardboard container successful his garage, adjacent to potting soil. 

Biden besides stated that nary of his materials were highly classified. This is besides false. 

The study intelligibly spells retired that immoderate of nan classified documents were marked "Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information." 

Finally, Biden stated that he had not shared classified accusation pinch his ghostwriter. This, too, is untrue. 

Biden many times publication aloud, verbatim, to his ghostwriter from notebooks that were filled pinch classified materials written down by Biden, "during intelligence briefings pinch President Obama and meetings successful nan White House Situation Room astir matters of nationalist information and subject and overseas policy." The ghostwriter past deleted nan recordings erstwhile he learned astir nan government’s investigation.

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5. Perhaps astir importantly, connected nan mobility of Biden’s willful authorities of mind, nan study specifications that immoderate of nan classified materials improperly retained by Biden "were recovered successful a container . . . that contained different materials of awesome individual value to him and that he appears to person personally utilized and accessed. 

The marked classified documents were recovered on pinch drafts of nan handwritten 2009 Thanksgiving memo Biden sent President Obama successful a last-ditch effort to seduce him not to nonstop further troops to Afghanistan. These materials were impervious of nan guidelines Mr. Biden took successful what he regarded arsenic among nan astir important decisions of his vice presidency." 

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In different words, nan classified materials retained by Biden complete respective years, including erstwhile he was a backstage citizen, were captious to what Biden saw arsenic his legacy. He did not mistakenly aliases inadvertently shop and hide them.

So, wherever does President Biden spell from here? Hur’s study is respective 100 pages long. Damaging specifications are definite to dribble retired complete nan adjacent fewer days and weeks. 

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The press is apt to adhd further findings aft doing its ain digging. If this were not an predetermination year, it mightiness beryllium forgotten and dismissed aft a while arsenic "old news." 

But erstwhile President Trump’s run team is not going to fto anyone forget. Expect nan report’s findings to beryllium relayed and replayed successful "Grandpa’s top hits" manner whenever Trump takes nan shape to talk astir what he sees arsenic our two-tiered strategy of justice. 

Add to this nan intelligence gaffes that Biden will inevitably proceed to make connected nan run trail, and you person a look for electoral disaster. 

Listen cautiously this play and complete nan adjacent respective days. You whitethorn perceive nan sound of knives being sharpened successful nan Democratic camp.

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