Biden’s Classified Documents: A Timeline and Overview

President Joe Biden has been unofficially investigated regarding certain classified government documents found at his office and residence


Miles Brockbank, Contributor

In recent months, President Joe Biden has been under fire for the possession of numerous classified government documents located in his office and residence in Wilmington, Delaware. The White House, Justice Department, and more recently the FBI have become involved in the matter.

The issue began back in November of 2022 when Biden’s lawyers uncovered a “small number” of documents labeled as “classified”, contained in a locked closet in an office used by Biden. The office is located at the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement, and just one day after the Biden administration reported its discovery to the National Archives, they had retrieved the documents from the closet. One day later, on November 4, National Archives officials reported the issue to the Justice Department. Finally, according to Biden’s lawyers, on November 10, the Justice Department let Biden’s administration know that it had initiated a “preliminary inquiry” into the matter.

However, according to Attorney General Garland, on December 20, more documents were reported by Biden’s legal team, this time found in his garage in his Wilmington residence. The Biden administration stated publicly that they were quick to notify the Justice Department of their findings, noting that they “immediately” relayed the information about a “small number” of classified files in his garage’s storage area.

However, on January 9, 2023, CBS News reported on the documents discovered at the Penn Biden Center, which the White House acknowledged with a statement. It is important to note they did not make a statement about or acknowledge the documents found at Biden’s Wilmington home. Additionally, on January 11, NBC News also reported on a second set of classified documents that had been discovered in Biden’s possession, which would turn out to be the documents found in his garage in Wilmington. Finally, one day later, the White House acknowledged publicly that these documents had been found in the president’s garage, adding that another classified document had been found “among stored materials in an adjacent room.”

On January 20, Biden’s team allowed a “thorough search” of his Wilmington residence, with full cooperation, allowing investigators within the Justice Department to search and retrieve “possession of materials it deemed within the scope of its inquiry, including six items consisting of documents with classification markings and surrounding materials.” Interestingly enough, Biden’s team were the ones who offered the search to the Justice Department, “in the interest of moving the process forward as expeditiously as possible.” The search lasted 13 hours, and a second search took place on February 1, this time only lasting 3.5 hours and occurring in Biden’s Rehoboth Beach home, in Delaware as well. In the first search, investigators seized about half a dozen documents, some of which were classified, but in the second search, no classified documents were identified.

All considered, the Biden administration has been extremely cooperative throughout the controversy, and the public will have to wait to see which documents were uncovered along with the implications of Biden’s possession of them.