Biden gets testy with ABC reporter for questioning him on classified documents and Ukraine spending

Feb 26, 2023 | Political News

Joe Biden became a bit aggressive towards an ABC News anchor during a Friday interview when he was asked about the classified documents discovered in his possession and the United State's incessant funding of the war in Ukraine, brushing off questions and shifting the blame to the former President Donald Trump and the “MAGA crowd.”

During an appearance on “World News Tonight” with David Muir, the journalist brought up Biden's hypocrisy in calling Trump “irresponsible” for his classified document controversy at Mar-a-Lago before he found himself at the center of a similar scandal.

At the time, Biden expressed concern that the material in Trump's possession may have revealed important “sources and methods,” reported Fox News.

“Can you assure the American people that none of the documents discovered in your garage or your old office compromised sources or methods or US intelligence?” Muir asked the current president.

“I've been advised by the counsel – let the Justice Department make that decision to not try to alter the case in any way,” Biden replied. “There have been very few documents that have been confiscated, found in my possession… meaning in my home, all the stuff that was moved out of my Senate office over the years, I'm told are a couple of things that were from 1973 or 74, documents were marked classified.”

“I don't know of anything, maybe, I don't know if anything that is marked like it was top secret, highly classified, et cetera,” he continued. “But I am told not to comment on that because I don't even know what they confiscated.”

Muir pressed again, saying “There are many who will understand why you can't comment, why your lawyers are saying not to comment. They also saw you, though, comment on former President Trump. And so at the very least —”

He was then interrupted by Biden, who cut in with “Because, look, here's what they were showing — you guys were showing on television things lying on the ground that said ‘top secret,' national, you know, ‘code word,” referencing the highly-publicized images of the documents laid out on the floor by the FBI during their raid on Mar-a-Lago.

Biden continued, saying, “And the difference is every single solitary thing I've been asked to do I've done voluntarily. I've invited the Justice Department to come in to every aspect of any place that I had any control of. There was no need for search warrants, were no need – well what do you need? Just come, whatever you want. Whatever you want, wherever you want to go, you can go. That was totally different.”

Muir still didn't let up on the line of questioning, saying, “When you hear about boxes in your garage or in your old office, you call the Trump discovery ‘Irresponsible.' Is there something irresponsible here though, too?” 

Biden chastised the reporter, saying “You know, you're a good lawyer. But you're trying to make a comparison.”

“There's degrees of irresponsibility that are — they can be significant degrees of responsibility. The way in which the boxes were packed up from my office, apparently, not everything was gone through as meticulously as it should have. But there was no intention,” the president said.

“I opened up my home, all my homes… the home at the beach and the home that- my permanent home. And they spent hours and hours going through everything, personal, everything I had. And that's a fundamentally different thing. There's nothing for me to hide,” he added.

Later in the interview, Muir asked Biden about the Americans who are concerned with the $113 billion pledged to Ukraine, saying “there are many who are asking ‘How long can we spend like this?'”

“Well first of all, I'm not sure how many are asking that. I know the MAGA crowd is,” Biden argued back, dismissing the question.

“The right-wing Republicans are, you know, talking about ‘We can't do this.' We find ourselves in a situation where the cost of doing… of walking away, could be considerably higher than the cost of helping Ukraine maintain its independence.”