OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Republican congressman Matt Gaetz floated a theory on Thursday about recent media interest in classified documents held by President Joe Biden, perhaps improperly, after they were initially discovered in November, just days before the midterm elections.
The Florida lawmaker said he believes that Democrats are engaged in an effort to “take out” Biden before he officially announces a 2024 reelection bid, which would potentially see him in a rematch with former President Donald Trump, who made his run official about a week after the elections.
Those first documents were found in an office Biden used at the Penn Biden Center, a Washington, D.C. think tank, after he left the vice presidency in early 2017. Additional classified documents have been discovered in the garage of one of his Delaware homes. It’s not clear who leaked information about the initial document discovery last November to the media.
“There’s an element to this that feels like the Democrats are taking out Joe Biden,” Gaetz told Fox News on Thursday. “I don’t know that that’s the case, but I don’t know that it’s not.”
“But just as Joe Biden is hardening the cement around his decision to run for president again, they start looking for what classified documents might have been tucked away eight years ago,” he continued.
The network added:
The Justice Department began its investigation into Biden after the first batch was discovered by the president’s personal lawyers at the Penn Biden Center in November, just days before the midterm elections. The developments only became public this month after CBS News broke the story and the White House was forced to respond. Attorney General Merrick Garland launched a special counsel investigation after additional classified documents from Biden were found at the president’s Wilmington home.
Gaetz said everything is speculative until it’s revealed what’s actually in the documents that were recovered.
“I mean, there’s an element of this where it’s Joe Biden’s lawyer who turns this information over, it’s Joe Biden’s own Justice Department that’s appointed a special counsel to investigate him – maybe the Democrats have realized that Joe Biden is not useful to them anymore, and they just assume toss him out and get a younger crop of candidates engaged in the next presidential race,” the Florida Republican said.
If Biden were to choose not to run, then it seems likely Vice President Kamala Harris would step up and declare her candidacy for the White House after losing out to Biden early on in the 2020 Democratic primaries. But there are indications that Democrats don’t want her to run, either, due to her persistently low approval ratings.
For his part, Gaetz went on to address the content and quality of the classified documents that have reportedly been discovered.
“We have a lot to learn about the content and substance of those documents, and if they relate to China, and if they were at that Biden Center at UPenn funded by China. That’s going to be a far more grave concern,” he said.
“What if the documents relate to our economy? What if Joe Biden was hustling information to his CCP (Chinese Communist Party) funders at the Biden Center for UPenn and that gave China economic advantage over Americans? That would create a nexus between those documents and our economic woes at the hands of rising China,” Gaetz continued.
“I don’t know because I don’t know what the documents pertain to, but documents in and of themselves don’t seem to have an obvious connection to the quality of life of my constituents, in the absence of understanding their content and context,” he added.
Nevertheless, Gaetz said that unless the documents contain bombshell national security implications, it’s not likely that their discovery will resonate much with Americans still struggling under the Biden economy.
“I haven’t been frothing at the mouth over the mere existence of some documents in a garage in Delaware,” he said. “You know, I believe Americans are more worried about the weaponization of government against them than they are, you know, what papers Joe Biden stuffed in [the] glove box of his Corvette.”
“If the documents pertain to China and were at a repository funded by China, one could reasonably assess that the scandal runs deeper and would have a real damaging effect on our country,” he said. “If they are mementos or, you know, documents that have far outlived any sort of functional relevance quite some time ago, then I think that’s different.”