(RightIsRight.co) – Democrat US Senator Joe Manchin has slammed President Joe Biden’s alleged mishandling of classified records as “totally irresponsible.”
“It’s unbelievable how this can happen. It’s totally irresponsible,” the US lawmaker from West Virginia told CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday.
Manchin’s comments came after Biden voluntarily allowed the FBI to search his home in Wilmington, Delaware, for more classified documents that allegedly date to his time as vice president in 2009-2017.
The first stash of reportedly mishandled classified papers was found by his aides in his former office, the Biden Penn Center in Washington, DC, days before the 2022 midterm election, but was not announced publicly until earlier this month.
More records have been found in Biden’s garage and office at his home in Wilmington, Delaware.
The house’s FBI search last Friday led to the discovery of six more classified documents, bringing the total to about two dozen.
Manchin particularly criticized Biden’s earlier comments that he had “no regrets” about the classified records in his Delaware home, a declaration the Democrat senator described as a “mistake.”
“I think he should have a lot of regrets. Whoever’s responsible… whether it be my chief of staff or my staff that were doing this, then I’m going to hold someone accountable, but basically the buck stops with me,” Manchin told another Sunday morning show, NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“We make mistakes. I can tell you I don’t think anyone intended, he sure didn’t intend, for it to fall in wrong hands and use it against our country. I know they didn’t intend that to happen,” the West Virginia US senator elaborated.
He made it clear he thought Biden and his White House predecessor, former US President Donald Trump, were now in the same position after the FBI search of the latter’s Florida home in August 2022 found classified papers.
Trump and other Republicans keep pointing out that he was in the position to declassify government documents, whereas Biden had no such powers as vice president.
“It’s just hard to believe that in the United States of America, we have a former president and a current president that are basically in the same situation. How does this happen?” Manchin asked.
He recalled a case in which he was leaving a sensitive compartmented information facility and was asked whether he was “clean” of secure documents.
In the same interview, Manchin declined to support Biden for reelection and did not rule out running for president himself in 2024.
“Everything’s on the table,” the US senator said.
“I haven’t decided on anything I’m going to do until I see what the lay of the land is going to be at that time, because this country needs to unite. We need to come back together. We’re not coming together. And it needs to bring somebody that can bring this country together,” Manchin said.
— The Washington Times (@WashTimes) January 23, 2023