Opinion: Doubling Down on Double Standards

By Sara Lehmann

The letters from House Oversight Committee chairman Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., to Debra Steidel Wall, archivist of the United States, and White House Counsel Stuart Delery are photographed Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2023. (AP Photo/Jon Elswick)

The Democrats, so-called champions of equity, have just discovered that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Much to their dismay.

Last week, bombshell reports, at least to those outside President Biden’s inner circle, revealed the unearthing of classified documents at his former office at Washington’s Penn Biden Center (now under the spotlight itself for murky donations from the Chinese and for possibly paying Biden and others for no work, among other possible violations). Some of the classified documents, which are supposed to be stored in secure locations, were “top-secret” and included U.S. intelligence materials and briefing memos about Ukraine, Iran, and the U.K.

When pressed for answers about the classified documents, the White House refused to respond. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre prevaricated more than usual and even got testy with a CBS News reporter, whom she was surprised to find confrontational. Reporters wanted to know when the president was briefed on the discovery of the documents and why the public wasn’t informed earlier.
These questions are particularly relevant. Squirreling away top-secret documents is bad enough, but the timing of the discovery is even worse. The documents were found on November 2, 2022, by Biden’s private attorneys — six days before the midterm elections. But the Biden administration only acknowledged the discovery more than two months later, in early January.

A day after the clumsy press conference — surprise! More classified documents were acknowledged to be found in the garage of Biden’s Wilmington, DE, residence. And surprise again! More classified documents at Biden’s home.

Not surprising was continued hedging by the Biden administration. The president told reporters, “People know I take classified documents and classified materials seriously.”

Yes, the Biden administration takes them so seriously that they made sure to suppress any knowledge of their existence until long after the midterm elections. Like this, they were able to milk Trump’s own classified documents debacle, which preceded the midterms by three months, for all its political worth while mum’s the word about Biden’s.

How oddly reminiscent of the Hunter Biden laptop scandal. When Trump confronted Biden about the laptop during the 2020 debates, Biden dismissed it as a “Russian plant,” citing “five former heads of the CIA” who say it’s “a bunch of garbage.” Complicit media and big tech bobbed their heads in assent.
Everyone now knows this was completely untrue. But playing the same dirty trick twice in a row may be more challenging. Especially in the post-Elon Musk Twitter era and the release of the so-called Twitter files, which revealed collaboration aimed at shutting down dissent at the highest level — between social media and government agencies, like the FBI, CIA, and the State Department.

Left-leaning outlets like CNN and NPR hurried to downplay Biden’s faux pas, alleging Trump’s fiasco was far more nefarious. CNN ran an infographic explaining the difference between the two, pointing to the greater number of Trump documents retrieved in an unprecedented FBI raid at his Mar-a-Lago home. But it neglected to comment on the crucial element of the documents’ sensitivity or point out the fact that Trump held the power to declassify documents as president while Biden did not as vice president.
NPR distinguished between the two by accusing Trump of not immediately turning over all the documents. Yet they were intentionally vague about the discovery of Biden’s batch of classified documents, particularly about the time they were found. NPR merely stated that they were found “in November,” conveniently omitting the exact date that predated the midterms by several days.
Even the leftist media, however, are hard pressed not to recognize a double standard now that Attorney General Merrick Garland was forced to appoint a special counsel to investigate. But some Democratic politicians are trying their hardest to spin their way out of it. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) even suggested that the documents could have been planted.

What’s particularly galling about such hypocrisy is playing the American public for fools. When asked at the time about Trump’s possession of classified documents, Biden lashed out at the former president, “It is just totally irresponsible.” When confronted with his own irresponsibility, Biden claimed he didn’t know about the documents at his office. And when asked about the documents found in the garage next to his antique Corvette, Biden’s response was almost laughable. “My Corvette’s in a locked garage. It’s not like it’s sitting out in the street.”

With more and more information becoming available about the tangle of coordination between big tech and Democratic legislators, Americans are waking up to the fact that they are being lied to, whether it’s the suppressing of “misinformation” about Russian collusion, Dr. Fauci, the Covid vaccine, the border crisis, election integrity, the Hunter Biden laptop, or other issues. And the list goes on.

For years, progressive henchmen have been plying the American public with narratives that undermine the idea of universal truths. They have threatened and destabilized the bedrocks of heretofore accepted moral, financial, scientific, and social realities. And they have succeeded with at least half the country that has accepted the notion that gender is a social construct, that American history began in 1619 instead of 1776, that the Inflation Reduction Act actually reduces inflation, that antisemitism is limited to right-wing extremists, or that the American police force is systemically racist.

This willful deceit has become so preposterous that the other half of the country has come to understand that what’s labeled “misinformation” by the left actually connotes a reliable truth. But persistent conditioning of the American people to falsehoods has lowered the bar of truth in the public sphere. It remains doubtful whether Biden will be held accountable in the age of collusion between politicians, media, and a politically weaponized intelligence community.

Democrats and their allies are hoping and scheming for this newest scandal to dissipate into a political nothingburger. Republicans and defenders of transparency and justice are hoping for the classified documents found in Biden’s office, house, and garage to prove to be more than mere pieces of paper. According to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, the scandal represents “why the American public does not trust their government.” To that end, House Republicans have launched an investigation of their own.
You can fool some of the people some of the time. But America is learning how dangerous that can be when its integrity is at stake.

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