Former CIA officer-turned-lawmaker Abigail Spanberger became the latest Democrat to criticize Joe Biden’s handling of classified documents on Monday, saying that agents risked their lives to gather information.
It came after a fourth batch of files was found at Biden’s home at the end of last week.
‘I’m concerned by any appearance of classified documents outside of secure compartmented Information facility — known as a SCIF,’ said Rep. Spanberger of Virginia.
‘I’m a former CIA officer. I used to handle classified documents every day.
‘I used to collect the information that was then put into classified documents.
‘So I know that the sources of the classified materials at times can be individuals who are risking their lives to provide valuable information to inform lawmakers, to inform the president, to inform our military and diplomatic leaders, and safeguarding those documents is about safeguarding our nation’s secrets.’
Former CIA officer-turned-lawmaker Abigail Spanberger became the latest Democrat to criticize Joe Biden’s handling of classified documents on Monday
On Saturday, the White House admitted that another set of government documents had been unearthed during a 13-hour search at Biden’s house outside Wilmington, Delaware.
It came 48 hours after Biden himself said he had ‘no regrets’ over the issue.
Rather than close ranks, the result of the new revelation was a string of Democrats openly expressing their exasperation with the president and his White House at the drip, drip, drip of scandal.
Sen. Dick Durbin, a close Biden ally, was among the Democrats who took to the Sunday morning news shows.
‘When the information is found, it diminishes the stature of any person who is in possession of it,’ he said, after describing the measure he took to protect classified information. ‘Because it’s not supposed to happen.’
Spanberger said it was vital now to get to the bottom of what went wrong.
President Joe Biden returned from his Delaware beach home on Monday to face fresh questions about his handling of classified documents found at his office and home
On Saturday, the White House admitted that more files had been found at his other Delaware home, in Greenville, an upscale neighborhood just outside Wilmington
Appearing on CNN Sunday, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin chided the president for his decisions, labeling them careless, and likening them to the actions of his embattled predecessor
‘And so I think it’s important that the attorney general has appointed a special counsel,’ she said.
‘I think that will be an important step in moving forward answering the questions how these documents got out of secured spaces, how long they have been in uncontrolled spaces, and ideally ensure that this never ever happens again.’
The documents recovered Saturday from Biden’s Wilmington residence range from his three-decade tenure in the Senate and his time as vice president, and reportedly brings the total number of classified files found to between 25 and 30.
It’s not immediately clear how many of the six documents unveiled were top secret in nature – though The DOJ searched the property for more than 12 hours, a statement from the president’s personal lawyer said.
The long and winding document trail has raised concerns over the president’s decision making, as officials discern whether his hoarding of the documents in his garage – next to his vintage Corvette – constitutes a breach of national security.
The office building housing the Penn-Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement in Washington, D.C where President Joe Biden’s personal lawyers handed over documents, which date from Biden’s time as the vice president to the Justice Department.
This image shows stacks of paper in Biden’s garage as he backs his corvette into his garage. Biden critics have suggested the paper could be the classified documents, though the claim has not been verified in any way
Yet Biden has played down concerns.
On Thursday, during a visit to storm-hit parts of California, he even expressed exasperation that he was being asked about it.
‘You know, what quite frankly bugs me is that we have a serious problem here we’re talking about, talking about what’s going on,’ he told reporters.
‘And the American people don’t quite understand why you don’t ask me questions about that.’
Democrats have become increasingly frustrated that questions about who knew what and when have overshadowed recent good news on inflation and taken heat off former President Donald Trump for his own handling of government documents.
Where Trump is accused of obstructing efforts to recover files, Biden and his allies say they have tried to be as transparent as possible.