Whereas when Donald Trump smuggles top-secret papers out of the White House, he takes them very capriciously. He apparently just crumpled them up and thoughtlessly tossed them in boxes with other household miscellany. Then the boxes got spread, willy-nilly, all over the tacky, garish grounds of MAGA-Largo.
Joe Biden, then the outgoing vice president, on the other hand carefully folded and sorted classified papers before responsibly removing them from the White House and then securely locking them in a closet in his think tank. That should prove to everyone's satisfaction how thoughtful and serious he is.
And to prove just what a down-home regular guy Joe also is, he even folksily stashed some of the stolen papers in the humble garage of his Delaware home. He reportedly did not store them in his beach house, possibly because, unlike Trump, he knows the dangers of flooding from hurricanes, not to mention the damage that salty air can do to exposed paper.
Feigning surprise that a team of his own lawyers just happened upon the first batch of papers in a closet during the routine performance of their professional duties, Biden scoffed during a Mexico summit press conference, in a non-admission admission that "People know that I take classified information seriously."
As Biden is fond of insisting before many a misleading statement: "No joke". He gives you his word as a Biden that he has no idea what's even in the purloined classified documents. As long as he knows people who know, what more do you want of him? If you're not one of those people who know, then you ain't human. The same way that if you're an African-American and you didn't vote for him, you ain't Black.
The weird similarity between the discovery of Trump's stolen documents and Biden's is that both were accomplished by whole teams of lawyers - rather than, say office assistants or household cleaners. Either the job description of lawyers has radically changed, or else mere servants simply aren't good enough for presidents. Just being speculative here, but when you're a former or current president with a consciousness of guilt, it seems that using whole armies of expensive private attorneys to ethically discover your booty before the cops do is a fine way of shielding yourself you from any culpability - before, during or after the crime.
But, hidden deep within the New York Times article on the second garage discovery, lies the real crux of this story.
The inquiry, according to two people familiar with the matter, is a type aimed at helping Attorney General Merrick B. Garland decide whether to appoint a special counsel, like the one investigating former President Donald J. Trump’s hoarding of sensitive documents and failure to return all of them.
The all-too-convenient discovery of the stolen documents on two of Biden's properties may give the Justice Department just the excuse it needs not to prosecute Trump for his own thefts as they go through the serious motions of investigating Biden.* They probably don't have a case. It would be uncomfortable for Garland to prosecute The Donald without also charging Uncle Joe. The Republicans would only play their hypocrisy card were Biden to be given a pass when Trump went to trial. These two sticky-fingered presidents may just end up canceling each other right out. We can put it behind us, turn the page, go forward and not backward.
It's also possible that Team Biden simply created the classified documents drama as a way to deflect attention from his son Hunter's own legal troubles and imminent GOP attacks and congressional hearings. By coming clean on his own misdeeds, Joe Biden aims to be seen as seriously and nobly and pre-emptively copping to innocent mistakes that were made, in an aw-shucks kind of way. He's shielding his kid by pretending to fall on his own sword.
Since it is still theoretically possible to fool some of the people most of the time, or at least most of the people some of the time, Biden can even use his trademark motto ("Here's the deal, Folks!") to market the latest diversionary product in his Battle For the Soul of Our Nation franchise.
|Dems Vs. GOP: The Play's the Thing, Or "You Can Bring a Sword to a Gunfight!"|
*After I posted this, Garland did indeed appoint a special counsel to investigate Biden's stash of classified documents. The appointment gives the appearance of fairness and equity with Trump's own ongoing special counsel probe. It's probably only a matter of time before someone dubs this "GarageGate" - because Biden's immediate goofy defense argument was that his expensive Corvette is in the same hallowed space as the second stash of documents. And if he keeps his precious car so secure, then the documents adjacent to the car must be secure, too. Seriously.