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Former Special Counsel Robert Hur’s decision not to prosecute President Joe Biden for mishandling classified information as a private citizen has sparked controversy and accusations of double standards, especially as Special Counsel Jack Smith pursues charges against former President Donald Trump for similar allegations. Hur’s investigation uncovered evidence that Biden retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency, including marked documents on military and foreign policy in Afghanistan and handwritten notebooks containing sensitive intelligence.

In newly released transcripts from Hur’s interviews with President Biden, Biden’s handling of classified information comes into question. Biden indicated that he believed the notebooks containing classified information were his personal property and thus could keep them, seemingly disregarding the protocol for handling classified materials. His justification that it was a continuation of an eight-year habit raises concerns about his awareness of the legal and ethical responsibilities regarding classified information.

Additionally, Biden’s admission that he kept a memo on Afghanistan “for posterity” raises further questions about his handling of classified materials after leaving office. Despite not having the authority to retain such documents, Biden’s actions suggest a lack of regard for proper procedures regarding classified information.

Comparisons have been drawn to Trump’s situation, where he claims to have declassified documents after leaving the White House and stored them in Mar-a-Lago, guarded by the Secret Service. Trump’s insistence that the documents are his property raises similar concerns about the mishandling of classified information. However, the contrast in treatment between Biden and Trump highlights perceived biases in the handling of such cases.

While Biden stored boxes of classified information in his unsecured garage in Wilmington, Delaware, Trump’s storage of documents at Mar-a-Lago led to an FBI raid on his home. The discrepancy in the treatment of the two cases raises questions about whether Biden received preferential treatment due to his status as a sympathetic, elderly figure with a purportedly poor memory, compared to Trump, who has faced scrutiny and legal action over similar allegations.

Overall, the handling of classified information by both Biden and Trump underscores the need for accountability and adherence to established protocols to safeguard national security interests. The disparities in the treatment of these cases highlight broader concerns about the politicization and selective enforcement of legal standards in high-profile investigations.