Special counsel Robert Hur's scathing rebuke of President Joe Biden's inability to answer to "willful retention" of classified documents might have exonerated the sitting president, but former President Donald Trump says it exonerates him, too.
"If Biden is not going to be charged, they said — that's up to them, you know; look, if he's not going to be charged, that's up to them — but then I should not be charged," Trump told the NRA Great American Outdoor Show Presidential Forum in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, a key battleground state in the 2024 presidential election.
"This is nothing more than selective persecution of Biden's political opponent: Me.
"And I don't know that it's Biden — because I don't think he knows he's alive — but it's vicious and very smart people around the resolute desk."
In his most extensive remarks after Hur's report shook Capitol Hill and the Biden White House late this week, Trump claimed exoneration for one of his four major indictments he has long rebuked as "election interference" efforts in coordination with a vindictive Biden Justice Department and White House.
"It was just announced that Joe Biden's department of injustice will bring zero charges against crooked Joe, despite the fact that he willfully retained — 'willfully retained' — and disclosed troughs of ultra-classified national security documents," Trump said, quoting the terms the special counsel Jack Smith sought to put Biden's political opponent on trial for before the 2024 presidential election.
"Now that's not what I've been hearing," Trump continued, noting Hur brought new allegations rebutting White House claims Biden was willfully returning documents to the National Archives and Records Administration. "And he's not under the Presidential Records Act, which is a big thing.
"I am. It's a protective act."
Now, the complicit mainstream media is struggling to cover for Biden's malfeasance.
"They're trying desperately to spin the Biden document disaster into a, 'Oh, but wasn't Trump worse by comparison?'" Trump continued.
"No, no, no. Trump was peanuts by comparison."
Even Hur's suggestion Biden would get away in prosecution for retaining classified documents because a jury would see him as a forgetful old man was rebutted by Trump. Biden's retention of documents is not recent during his apparent cognitive decline at age 80.
"That was 50 years, and he did a lot of it when he was at a very young age," Trump said.
"He was mentally a little better than he is right now."
Also, as Trump and his lawyers have long argued, the Presidential Records Act protects a former president on retention of documents after leaving office.
"But no, in actuality, I am covered by the very important Presidential Record Act and therefore I did absolutely nothing wrong nothing wrong," Trump continued. "But Biden wasn't president. Only the president is covered. It's a big deal and he wasn't covered.
"Also Biden took documents over this long-term period as a senator and as a vice president. Well, that you're not allowed to do."
Trump did hedge on Biden's cognitive ability when he was young, joking he was never a scholar.
"Much of this period he was at a very strong state and he was fine," Trump said in a rare suggestion Biden was competent, before striking a more mocking tone. "He was probably, in terms of intelligence of senators, he was probably out of the 100, he was probably in the 95 category.
"I'd say he was 95th on the list. He was never setting any records."
Also, the White House and accepting liberal media's narrative of Biden's willfully working with NARA and federal investigators was rejected by Trump.
"He made recovery almost impossible, the recovery of documents, he made it almost impossible for the federal government to get them," Trump continued. "In fact, he gave classified material to the writer of his book in total violation of just about everything.
"I cooperated with the very unfriendly and hostile feds. I cooperated far more than Biden did, who sent records to Chinatown and shipped them all over the place.
"They don't tell you about that."
Among the classified documents locations is the Penn Biden Center, Trump warned, suggesting China might have been peddling foreign influence.
"He was even at Penn Biden Center," Trump said. "You know that he gets paid millions of dollars. Did you know that? You know who pays him? China!
"He gets paid millions of dollars. And they pay close to $100 million to the school itself."
Penn, which is Trump's alma mater, has had some shaky moments in the past year, not only with Biden and China influence but also with the antisemitic protests as Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y. exposed months ago.
"I know all about Penn," Trump said. "I went to the Wharton School of Finance, and I love Penn, but Penn is getting a little bit out there."
The embarrassing revelations that Biden retained classified documents in his garage in Maryland was not lost on Trump either.
"They're also sitting under his beautiful Corvette that he talks so much about — in a very flimsy garage with one of those very cheap garage doors," Trump joked. "You know you could cut it open with a scissor. 'Does anybody have a scissor? I want to get some classified documents. Let's cut it open.'
"It had no security, no secret service, no nothing. And certain members of the Biden family lived there. I wonder what they did with those very important documents.
"But Biden fought them all the way. I didn't. They're trying to make it the other way. No, Biden fought them very hard, and they never got what they wanted to get anyway."
By contrast, the raided Mar-a-Lago was a secure facility "loaded with Secret Service," Trump argued in response to Smith's indictment claims.
"I even gave the DOJ and FBI lunch at Mar-a-Lago," Trump lamented. "You know they say I didn't behave. I gave them lunch. I said have lunch at beautiful Mar-a-Lago — where they asked us, 'Do you mind, sir, doubling up the locks on the doors?'
"'Yeah, I'll double them up.' We had locked doors. 'Yeah, I'll double them up.' And I did that."
Biden was not raided, but his political opponent was — unnecessarily — Trump added.
"The discussions were good and they ended up with the now-famous raid on Mar-a-Lago," Trump said. "We're having a talk and they raided my house.
"So I guess they expected dinner, not lunch," he joked.
All of this exposes the massive "selective political persecution" and prosecution of Biden's chief rival, Trump concluded.
"They did it for publicity reasons; they did it for election interference reasons," he said. "They want to interfere with the election.
"But never has such a thing as what he's done with the weaponization of our government, DOJ, FBI. It's never taken place in our country. It only takes place in a third-world country.
"This has never happened in our country before. And the local DAs are a part of it — the attorney generals, they're all a part of it."
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
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