Home » Joe Biden defends himself after report calling him an “elderly man with a bad memory” – rts.ch

Joe Biden defends himself after report calling him an “elderly man with a bad memory” – rts.ch

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Joe Biden defends himself after report calling him an “elderly man with a bad memory” – rts.ch

Joe Biden insisted on defending himself Thursday after a report that exonerated him in an investigation into the withholding of confidential documents, but described him as an “elderly man with a bad memory.” However, he made a new blunder during the press conference.

“I mean well, I’m an old man and I know what I’m doing, damn it. I don’t have a memory problem,” defended Joe Biden, 81, during a televised speech.

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A few hours earlier, a special prosecutor charged with investigating his handling of confidential documents had published a 388-page report not recommending charges against him but exposing his main vulnerability, his age, and finding that “his memory had worsened.” .

Joe Biden “couldn’t remember when he was vice president” or exactly the year his eldest son Beau died, special prosecutor Robert Hur said. “How the hell does he dare?” thundered Joe Biden on this subject, visibly very moved and in a tone of defiance.

A friendly, well-meaning older man with a bad memory

Robert Hur, special prosecutor

Appointed in January 2023 by Justice Minister Merrick Garland, the special prosecutor concluded that the president had “knowingly kept and disclosed classified documents after his vice-presidency while he was a private citizen.”

But he considered that “an indictment would not be justified”, believing in particular that a jury would give the benefit of the doubt to “a sympathetic, well-intentioned elderly man with a bad memory”.

Repeated blunders

This expected decision dispels possible legal hassles for the Democratic president, who is preparing to face his Republican predecessor Donald Trump in November for a rematch of the 2020 election, but again places him in a bad position vis-à-vis his political rivals, who did not fail to comment on the report’s conclusions.

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Especially since it comes after he confused in recent days the President of France Emmanuel Macron and the former German Chancellor Angela Merkel with deceased predecessors.

>> Read also: Mitterrand, and now Kohl… Joe Biden is getting confused again

“Mexico President Sissi”

And Thursday evening, questioned about the conflict in Gaza, he mentioned discussions on humanitarian aid with “the president of Mexico, Sissi”, wanting to talk about the Egyptian head of state.

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President “unfit” or “inappropriate comments”

The Republican staff in the House of Representatives, including its president Mike Johnson, judged that this “deeply disturbing” report showed that the president was “unfit” to exercise his functions.

The White House legal adviser, Richard Sauber, as well as Joe Biden’s personal lawyer, Bob Bauer, welcomed in a letter annexed to the report the decision of the special prosecutor not to initiate proceedings, but regretted “inappropriate comments” which “have no place in a report from the Ministry of Justice”.

Joe Biden assures that he fully cooperated

After the publication of the report, Joe Biden assured in a press release that he had fully cooperated with the investigation, including during a five-hour interview over two days with the special prosecutor and his team in October 2023, at the very beginning of the “international crisis” triggered by the unprecedented attack by Palestinian Hamas in Israel from the Gaza Strip.

He insisted on the difference between his attitude in this affair and that of Donald Trump, 77, criminally prosecuted for having taken hundreds of confidential documents after his departure from the White House and accused of “obstruction of justice” in this affair.

>> Read also: Donald Trump’s trial in the classified documents case will take place in May 2024

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Donald Trump reacted to the report by denouncing “a two-tiered justice system”. “The Biden documents case is different from mine and 100 times more serious. I did nothing wrong and I cooperated much more” with investigators, he assured.

The special prosecutor, however, noted in his report the “contrast” between the attitude of the two men in their respective cases, emphasizing that according to the indictment Donald Trump ordered “third parties to destroy evidence and lie” .

Donald Trump pleads not guilty to new charges in secret documents affair and Donald Trump accused of trying to hide video surveillance images from justice

The appointment of Robert Hur as special prosecutor followed the discovery in December 2022 and January 2023 of classified documents dating from the time when Joe Biden was vice-president (2009-2017), in particular on the American military engagement in Afghanistan , in his residence in Wilmington, Delaware, as well as in a former office.

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