Secret documents found at Pence’s Indiana home

Updated January 24, 2023 at 3:16 PM ET

A “small number of documents with secret markings that were inadvertently bagged and transported to the former vice president’s private home at the close of the last administration” were collected from his home in Indiana by FBI officials, according to letters from Pence’s representatives, according to the National Archives and Records Administration .

In a Jan. 18 letter to Kate Dillon McClure, acting director of the NARA White House liaison department, Greg Jacob, a spokesman for Pence, wrote that the documents were discovered Jan. 16, when Pence “out of caution” followed Die classified documents found in President Biden’s home, “hired an outside attorney experienced in handling classified documents to review the records kept in his private home.”

Jacob said the attorney identified a small number of documents that could contain potentially sensitive or classified information that were scattered among the records, but added that the attorney could not provide an accurate description of the folders or the information material.

“Vice President Pence immediately secured these documents in a locked safe pending further instructions on their proper handling by the National Archives,” the letter said.

Following this letter, the Justice Department requested “direct possession” of the letters on the evening of January 19 and retrieved them from its safe late that evening.

“The transfer was facilitated by the vice president’s personal attorney, experienced in handling classified documents, who conducted the prior review on Jan. 16,” Jacob said in a second letter sent to William Bosanko, NARO’s chief operating officer. was directed.

Pence is widely viewed as the Republican presidential nominee in 2024, but has yet to formally announce his candidacy.

The discovery of classified material at his home follows similar discoveries at the private homes of former President Donald Trump and former President Biden. Attorney General Merrick Garland has appointed special counsel to investigate both of these cases, citing Trump’s presidential bid and Biden’s likely run for re-election.

In an interview with CBS on Jan. 11, prior to the discovery of the documents, Pence said his staff “reviewed all materials in our office and home to ensure no classified materials left the White House or remained in ours.” Possession. And I, I remain confident that this has been done in a thorough and careful manner.”

Republicans were quick to comment on the development

House Committee on Oversight and Accountability Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., applauded Pence in a statement Tuesday but remained critical of Biden’s handling of his similar situation.

“Former Vice President Pence’s transparency is in stark contrast to the Biden White House staffers who continue to withhold information from Congress and the American people,” Comer said.

Meanwhile, Republican Senator Kevin Cramer of North Dakota asked himself, “Can we all agree that this shouldn’t happen?

In an interview on SiriusXM POTUS Politics’ “The Briefing with Steve Scully,” he said he knew “this should just be built into discipline, but we need to institutionalize that discipline so there’s some sort of process where someone else when the interns pack your boxes before you go.”

This story will be updated.

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