‘I have no idea’: Biden told investigators he didn’t know how his aides stored sensitive documents, transcript shows

‘I have no idea’: Biden told investigators he didn’t know how his aides stored sensitive documents, transcript shows - Politics - News

President Joe Biden’s Deposition: A Detailed Account of Two Days with Special Counsel Robert Hur

Subtitle: An In-depth Analysis of the President’s Interview, Filled with Classic Yarns and Memorable Moments

President Joe Biden sat down for an extensive interview with special counsel Robert Hur and his investigative team last October, providing lengthy detailed stories from his decades-long political career. The transcript of this intriguing encounter, now reviewed for your reading pleasure, reveals an engaging mix of classic Biden yarns and instances that seemed to have left the president with a less-than-perfect memory.


1. A Career of Storytelling:
The deposition transcript is rich with the classic tales that President Biden has shared throughout his career, from an embarrassing archery episode in Mongolia to tense discussions on his views regarding the Afghanistan war.

2. Foggy Memories:
The president displayed moments of forgetfulness during the interview, most notably an instance where he seemed to have trouble recalling the year that his son Beau had passed away.

3. Uncertainty Surrounding Documents:
Biden repeatedly stated that he didn’t know or couldn’t remember how his aides stored or handled sensitive documents, leaving them in boxes that were eventually moved to his private office and homes following his departure from the vice presidency.

4. Keeping Track of Personal Notes:
When asked about how he managed his personal notes on foreign policy, Biden admitted, “I have no idea.” He continued, expressing a wish that he could claim to be more organized.

5. The Report:
Special Counsel Hur’s final report described President Biden as presenting like a “sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.” Despite the finding that Biden had mishandled and disclosed classified information improperly after leaving the vice presidency, Hur did not believe there was enough evidence to charge the president with a crime.

6. Public Reception:
The release of the report led to a political frenzy, with both Democrats and Republicans reacting strongly to Hur’s portrayal of Biden. The White House and Biden himself expressed outrage at the characterization.

7. Filibustering with Lengthy Answers:
Biden’s strategy during the interview was to engage in lengthy, off-topic soliloquies. Though advisors typically recommend short answers in depositions, Biden seemed to employ a tactic reminiscent of his days in the Senate, using the allotted five-hour interview time for lengthy, uninterrupted responses.

8. The Interview’s Tone:
Despite the high stakes of Hur’s investigation into the sitting president, the interview tone did not appear adversarial. Instead, it was marked by laughter as Biden made jokes and shared personal anecdotes.

9. Joking During the Interview:
Biden joked that “the FBI knows my house better than I do,” told prosecutors he could tell a picture was old because “I have my arm around (South Carolina Republican Sen.) Lindsey Graham,” and referred to the pope as “my ticket.” He also teased that amid the FBI’s multiple searches of his homes and office, “I just hope you didn’t find any risqué pictures of my wife in a bathing suit.”

10. Recalling Beau’s Death:
Biden emphasized that he never intentionally kept classified documents after leaving office, and during the interview, he shared a story about his son Beau, who had encouraged him to remain politically engaged. However, in this anecdote, Biden initially struggled to recall the exact year of his son’s passing.

11. The Classified Documents:
As evidence that Biden had handled classified information after leaving office, Hur cited transcripts of a recorded conversation between Biden and his ghostwriter where Biden mentioned “finding all the classified stuff downstairs.” However, during his interview, Biden remembered the conversation differently and claimed he had wanted to keep the information confidential for his book.

12. Recalling Key Episodes:
Biden shed little light on how classified documents came to be found at his post-vice-presidential office and homes in Delaware and Virginia, stating that he didn’t recall who packed and moved boxes from his official vice-presidential offices and residence at the end of the Obama administration.

13. Stories Instead of Answers:
During the interview, Biden used long stories to respond to investigators’ questions about his use of work spaces at the Naval Observatory residence. This strategy, while engaging, sometimes made it difficult for investigators to keep control and answer all their questions within the allotted time.

The transcript of President Joe Biden’s deposition with special counsel Robert Hur offers a fascinating glimpse into the president’s personal and professional life, revealing classic stories, moments of forgetfulness, and attempts to clarify misunderstandings. The interview is a testament to Biden’s storytelling abilities, as well as the unique dynamics of high-stakes investigative interviews.