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Another one: Classified documents found at Mike Pence’s Indiana home

Pence had instructed his lawyer to begin conducting searches after the Biden administration found several rounds of classified documents from Biden’s term as vice president

SHARE Another one: Classified documents found at Mike Pence’s Indiana home
Former Vice President Mike Pence speaks with reporters at Garden Sanctuary Church of God in Rock Hill, S.C.

Former Vice President Mike Pence speaks with reporters, Dec. 6, 2022, at Garden Sanctuary Church of God in Rock Hill, S.C. Documents with classified markings were discovered in Pence’s Indiana home last week, according to his attorney.

Meg Kinnard, Associated Press

Former Vice President Mike Pence’s lawyer turned over a dozen classified documents that were found at Pence’s home in Indiana to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Now, an investigation by the FBI and the Department of Justice has launched into how those documents ended up at his home, according to CNN, which broke the news.

What happened when Pence found classified documents?

Pence had instructed his lawyer to begin conducting searches after the Biden administration found several rounds of classified documents from Joe Biden’s term as vice president. When sensitive documents were found at Pence’s home, the National Archives was immediately alerted.

In a letter obtained by CNN dated Jan. 18, Pence’s lawyer Grey Jacob said that a “small number of documents that could potentially contain sensitive or classified information” were found two days prior, which is why he could not give an exact description of the documents.

“Vice President Pence immediately secured those documents in a locked safe pending further direction on proper handling from the National Archives,” Jacob wrote.

Since then, the classified material has been handed over to the archives agency for review.

How similar is his situation to that of Biden, Trump?

Back in November, Pence was asked during an interview with ABC News if he had taken any documents from the White House, to which he responded: “I did not.”

Meanwhile, investigators found at least six additional classified documents from Biden’s home in Wilmington, Delaware, on Saturday — the fourth instance of classified documents being discovered in the president’s possession from his previous positions as vice president and senator, as Sarah Gambles reported for the Deseret News.

The Presidential Records Act requires Biden to submit all documents from previous appointments to the National Archives, according to CNN.

The DOJ is still investigating roughly 300 classified documents that were recovered at former President Donald Trump’s estate in Florida, according to The Associated Press.

Trump was requested to give back the documents but had failed to comply, which is when the FBI served a search warrant and retrieved 15 boxes full of documents.

A timeline of document discovery

  • Nov. 2, 2022: The two batches of classified documents were found at the Penn Biden Centre, which Biden founded in Washington, D.C., as I previously reported for the Deseret News.
  • Nov. 14, 2022: Attorney General Merrick Garland assigned U.S. Attorney John Lausch to investigate the matter.
  • Dec. 20, 2022: More records were found in the garage of Biden’s home in Wilmington, Delaware, per PBS News.
  • Jan. 11: One additional document was found in the president’s personal library in Wilmington, per The Associated Press.
  • Jan. 19: National Archives collected files from Pence.
  • Jan. 21: An FBI search led to the discovery of additional documents that Biden didn’t hand back, some of which were handwritten notes.