Beyond the law, that is what the people we send to Washington believe they are, beyond the law. They prove it every day and we keep sending them back, and are proud of the fact that we sent them back. They smile at us, give us the big thumbs up, and then do whatever the hell they want with no recriminations whatsoever.
Take twiddle dumb and twiddle dumber above. When they left office, as Vice President, in the case of Joe Biden, and as President, in the case of the former idiot in chief, they stuffed their shipping boxes with classified documents to take with them. They are not supposed to do so, but screw the government and its rules they wanted them so they took them.
Here is what the law says on classified documents. This is 18 U.S. Code 1924:
(a) Whoever, being an officer, employee, contractor, or consultant of the United States, and, by virtue of his office, employment, position, or contract, becomes possessed of documents or materials containing classified information of the United States, knowingly removes such documents or materials at an unauthorized location shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than five years, or both.
This seems pretty clear to me but I only went to the 257th rated college for two years. In case anyone is just as dumb as me the Congress passed the Presidents Records Act after Nixon tried to take over the country in the early 1970's. It says that presidential records are the property of the US Government that they must be preserved and are not the president's private property. The law applies to the President, Vice President, and certain parts of the Executive Office of the President. Again, pretty clear to me but we've already established my stupidity.
So we have multiple ways for the people leading our country to be aware of the illegality of taking classified documents and yet they are doing it anyway. In the case of the former head dope, he had hundreds of documents that he not only refused to return to the National Archives but he sued them to keep them. He continues to lie about having them and the FBI was forced to raid his home to retrieve them.
His minions shouted that this was government overreach, and why are they picking on this poor man, a career criminal who has multiple investigations currently going on against him, wah, wah, wah. Now with the revealing of around fifteen classified documents found in the office and garage of Biden, these same people are screaming for the FBI to raid his houses too.
So, big difference here is that Biden called the FBI and the National Archive and told them he had them and they went and picked them up the next day. The other guy lied about having them and tried to keep them from coming to take them back. So a big difference in working with the agencies to make things right, however, they still both broke the law.
For Biden to claim he didn't know he had them is not an excuse as the University Police reminded me on that warm October night. Ignorance of the law does not make you safe from the law. While I leave it to others to decide if a special counsel is really needed in either case, I am glad that Merrick Garland is taking steps to insure the same treatment is given to both men. For me, there is no difference. Having something you are not supposed to have is the same whether it is fifteen or a hundred and fifty.
Just think, for a minute, that you were involved in some form of government consulting and you had in your possession classified documents that nobody asked you to return so you thought, I'll just take these home to show friends and family and possibly sell to a foreign agent if they ring my doorbell. I'm pretty sure you and I would not get a special counsel to look into this. What we would get is tased, handcuffed, and locked up so fast it would make our heads spin.
Our elected officials should be treated exactly the same. Nobody is beyond the law.