Doing the right thing, in this case appointing a Special Counsel is always a good thing when it comes to right and wrong. Sadly, in this case it’s going to come with some devastating consequences because of long-standing DOJ policy of not commenting on ongoing criminal investigations. Which a Biden Administration DOJ will honor.
Even if another set of classified documents hadn’t been found in Wilmington, and worse in the garage of Biden’s home (ouch!) I think we were always headed for the appointment of a Special Counsel. After the revelation of the second find of classified docs it should have happened before today. Maybe like Earl Warren who didn’t want the job when LBJ called him in after JFK’s assassination Garland had trouble getting someone to accept the job. Let’s face it – Garland ain’t anywhere near the force LBJ was! (Warren was forced to accept heading the Commission, and it’s reported he left LBJ’s office in tears. He knew no matter what his legacy would be tainted and he was right. The Warren Report did a number on his reputation and how history views him) I’d imagine anyone other than a foaming out the mouth MAGA would think rationally about what was being asked of them, consider what’s been going on with Trump and then consider Biden and the virtual certainty that Biden, and probably his closest advisors did nothing wrong & that this was all sloppy staff work and know the fury that will erupt when no charges are filed.
Talk about a career killer.
So I can see why there are people who didn’t want the job, even Trump appointees sympathetic to the policies if not the person of Trump who wanted to avoid having a MAGA target (perhaps quite literally) on their back for years, if not the rest of their lives. So yeah, it might have taken Garland a while to find someone with the gravitas AND connections to the Trump DOJ to take on what’s going to be a thankless task. Having a strong sense of duty sucks sometimes but eventually someone would step up and accept Garland’s request.
As the title indicates I believe it’s good that Garland/the DOJ is taking the approach of turning this into a criminal investigation. By that I mean a Special Counsel is specifically tasked with determining what, if any laws were broken and whether charges should be brought. That classified documents were mishandled is both wrong and even criminal, especially for highly classified material. Even if it was a srewup on someone’s part to not ensure a batch was returned to where it should have gone. Same for those tasked with packing up those boxes in the garage. Anything with a cover sheet noting classified material should have been set aside so it could be properly returned. Whether this will meet the standard of “intent” is a question that will be forever debated.
I know from experience that for non-really high level people unsecured classified information, even in a Pentagon space that’s locked up tight at night (and often during the day a code has to be entered to get into the office!) it’s at best an end to someone career and their security clearance. Sorry President Biden, but that applies to your people as much as it does to Trump’s or anyone else’s.
Anyway, I think President Biden wants this dealt with. The fact he ordered a thorough search of everything, everywhere after those ten or so docs were found at the Penn Center’s DC office speaks to his integrity. He wants anything that might be out there found and turned over right effing NOW! Therein lies the difference between Biden and Trump. And that should be the end of it. Sadly, but oh so predictably it’s not. It’s not even the beginning, or even the end of the beginning. The GOP hasn’t celebrated like this since Ruth Bader Ginsburg died!
I really, really wanted to use a picture from the South Park “Over Logging” episode as the title pic but common sense regarding good taste stopped me. But the image is of the Randy character, who having not “relieved” himself to internet porn for an extended period of time due to a nationwide internet problem breaks into the trailer in their depression era style camp and gets on to the computer and…let’s just say the “explosive release” covers most of the walls. And ceiling. And that’s how the GOP is now. All you’d need to do is photoshop “Gym” Jordan’s head on to Randy’s, sitting there with pants around the ankles in that trailer with huge splotches all over the walls and ceiling.
Personally I’d like to, with each and every person who didn’t follow through on making sure that those classified documents made their way back to where they should have been returned to get them in a room. And since I can’t advocate physical violence and say I’d slap them silly, I can at least say I once could make my Company Gunny blush when I decided to dress someone down when I was on active duty. Yeah, not just salty but (verbally) hitting them with one of those big ole salt blocks we’d set out for horses when I lived on the farm up in WV.
So where are we? President Biden surely believes AG Garland has done the right thing. I’d imagine he will say so soon but he’s got to be careful in what he says. Any comment will be parsed down to sub-atomic level with the GOP looking for anything at all that can be spun as him trying to “interfere” with the investigation! But the appointment of a Special Counsel, even though is is the right and proper thing creates a giant problem.
Prior to the appointment, DOJ had some latitude to make statements and wrap things up quickly which given we are a couple of months into the Penn Center matter would have been good. Now? There is a formal criminal investigation and that means DOJ isn’t going to be saying jack sh!t. For an awful lot of months. You can bet every thing you have including your very life that GOPers will more than fill the information vaccum with bat-sh!t insane speculation. “Cover Up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!’ will be their mantra. And if someone, some rank & file staffer(s) winds up being charged for being criminally negligent (possible, if not likely) the word SCAPEGOAT!!!! will be added to the mantra.
In the meantime, we have not just the GOP but also journalists making irresponsible comments. Even on MSNBC. I see reporters, ones who so often provide solid and factual information engaging in speculation. For example, I think it was Ken Dilanian talking about how the Penn Center matter couldn’t be close but now people can be issued a subpoena – the clear implication being that contrary to all prior reporting (including prior to this afternoon his own) everyone was fully cooperating! Oh how journalist looooove to speculate, and how quickly they turn into “journalists” – I guess they think taking potshots like this will give them credibility with MAGA goobers. Sure. And I’ll win the lottery jackpot someday.
President Biden, through his Attorney General has ensured the right thing has been done. And because he did the right thing, and someone fresh has been brought it who will start even the Penn Center portion of the investigation from scratch Biden is going to suffer through a long, long, very long number of months of abuse.
One final thought. Even if Garland caves to the optics and Trump isn’t charged soon (as he should be) over the Mar A Lago documents this isn’t good news for Trump. Trump is, as he has been since the 2020 election making bank on his Big Lie about the election being stolen. And plenty in the GOP have been engaging in some grift of their own on the road paved by Trump. Now? No matter what, they have a NEW, even BIGGER lie they can sell! Being good at nothing else Trump is in fact a master con-man/grifter and he’s not going to be the big moneymaker on this new BIG LIE. It could cost him money when he’s increasingly desperate for steady infusions of cash.
Ok, one last “final” thought for now. I’m watching the WH Briefing as I’ve been writing and my anger towards the WH Press Corps is growing exponentially. Each and every goddamned one of them isn’t interested in facts, but rather DEMANDING their in-their-dreams-Pulitzer-winning “Gotcha” moment. F*CK THEM!!!!!
I’m guessing that someone planted the documents in Biden’s garage, possibly a secret service agent sympathetic to Trump.I do not believe Biden put them there. Someone did this to get back at Biden.
EXACTLY! I have thought this was, just too damn convenient…..for the RW to USE!
The truth will come out years from now and they will open an investigation that ends up like the rest of them.