The Justice Department found the documents on Friday, including six items containing classified markings. What exactly was seized and the exact level of classification wasn’t revealed.
The White House says the president offered for the Justice Department to come to his home, saying the search was consensual.
“Stuff going back decades. His notes. His files. His memorabilia. His to-do lists,” said Ian Sams, special assistant to the president. “Just to make sure they had everything, and this is all part of the president’s commitment to total cooperation.”
This comes after documents were found at Biden’s private Washington D.C. office and in other parts of his Wilmington home including in a storage space in his garage.
On Sunday, some Democrats on Capitol Hill came to the president’s defense.
“He had no idea,” said Sen. Chris Coons (D-De.).
Coons, Biden’s close confidant, made the contrast between Biden’s handling of the investigation compared to former President Donald Trump’s document dilemma.
“If you’re serving in the Senate or as vice president or president you literally get millions of documents coming through your office week in and week out. I do think this was inadvertent,” Coons said. “The whole point of having a special counsel is to ensure that.”
Coons stressed the current president is fully cooperating with the DOJ.
While noting the difference, other democrats acknowledge the seriousness of the matter.
“When that information is found, it diminishes the stature of any person who is in possession of it because it’s not supposed to happen,” said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Il.).
Some Republicans see Biden’s situation as worse than Trump’s.
“These documents were hidden for five years,” said Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.)
Some say this could leave a lasting mark on Biden’s presidency.
“Watergate started as a very small burglary and it led to the president of the United States resigning,” said Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Tx.)
In a new poll, 64% of those surveyed believe Biden acted inappropriately in his handling of the classified documents and 77% believe the same of Trump.
In California this week, the president told reporters he had no regrets about the handling of documents.
“There’s no there there,” Biden said.
Biden has been mulling over the idea of another run for president, gearing up for a 2024 bid as this all unfolded. Now he’s putting that announcement off until likely after the State of the Union next month.