Speaker Kevin McCarthy went on a rant Thursday when asked about the differences between the Trump and Biden document dramas — and rightly so.
The idea that President Joe Biden’s case is entirely different from ex-President Donald Trump’s is the media’s first line of defense for the current prez. And yes, lots of details differ.
But, as McCarthy noted, many of them make Biden look worse. The speaker’s demolition of the apples-to-apples critique was a powerful performance, slicing all the issues expertly.
He rightly pointed to the irony that a guy “on ’60 Minutes’ that was so concerned about President Trump’s documents” now has been revealed to have kept secret documents “for years out in the open in different locations,” none of them secure.
Now to the double standard: “Did he utilize the Justice Department to raid President Trump?” And: “You watched them leak photos of files of President Trump; where’s the photos of President Biden’s documents?”
That is: “Why would they go after a political opponent that way, why would they leak photos and say all this, why would they go through the former first lady’s clothing, why would they go through his son’s clothing, why would they raid as they did?”
Then came the turnaround: “Prior to an election, they found a sitting president, when he was vice president, with top secret documents — why did they handle that differently? We’re in America, we believe in equal justice. Why did they not even tell America that that transpired?
“How did he sit before ‘60 Minutes’ knowing what he had done, how do we find a second location and he’s shocked by it? Why aren’t you [the press] asking him these questions?
“Why doesn’t he come forward to the American public?”
To recap: Biden was only ex-vice president when he carried off his secrets — meaning he had zero right to do so. Yet he asked on “60 Minutes” of Trump’s docu-mess, “How could anyone be that irresponsible?”
Meanwhile, Biden’s “explanation” is straight out of the old Steve Martin “I forgot” routine. He says he doesn’t remember any of it, and his lawyers say he shouldn’t say anything — which doesn’t oblige him to stonewall; it’s just an excuse for claiming “I hope to have a chance” to talk about it “soon.”
Nor does his lawyers’ claim that it was all “inadvertently misplaced” add up: He wrote a book off this stuff.
And sent lawyers to go through the old office. As McCarthy noted, “If you call a lawyer to remove something from your office, you must have known ahead of time.”
An ironic side note: At least one House Democrat has a novel defense of Biden. Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson reportedly says, “I’m suspicious of the timing of it. . . . Things can be planted on people, places and things . . . and then discovered conveniently.” (View hosts Sunny Hostin and Joy Behar also find the timing suspicious!)
Hilarious: “Possibly planted evidence” was also a Trump defense after the Mar-a-Lago raid.
Anyway, Attorney General Merrick Garland’s own Trump precedent has now forced him to name a special counsel to probe Biden’s docu-drama, too. But Garland still won’t name an independent prosecutor for the Biden family foreign-influence-peddling case, which clearly implicates Joe as well as Hunter.
It’s beyond obvious that Biden took the docs with him after his time as vice president ended, mostly with an eye on using them in writing that book, then later moved them to his UPenn office. (All without registering them with the National Archives, which has been notably quiet in this case, unlike in Trump’s.)
By the way: Biden surely used a ghostwriter for his book. Gen. David Petraeus faced felony charges (he cut a plea deal) for sharing classified docs with his biographer.
Yes, Biden and Trump’s cases differ in endless ways. But the Mar-a-Lago case prompted the media and some in government to amp up the “possible charges” against the ex-prez, producing innovative legal theories that now clearly should apply to the ex-veep-and-current-prez.
Why don’t they? As McCarthy pointedly noted, this nation is supposed to believe in “equal justice for all.”