The highly anticipated release of Special Counsel Robert Hur’s report on President Joe Biden’s handling of classified documents has raised concerns in the White House about potential political fallout heading into the 2024 election. A political expert believes that regardless of the findings, the report will be beneficial to Donald Trump. While Hur’s report is not expected to recommend criminal charges against Biden, it may contain damaging photos of how the president stored classified documents. Given Trump’s legal issues, the report is likely to play into his assertions of equivalency, further fueling his defense strategy.
Regardless of the report’s conclusions, Grant Reeher, a professor of political science at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, believes it will be advantageous to Trump. If the report contains “bad optics” for Biden, the general public may view it similarly to the photos of Mar-a-Lago which showed classified materials stored in accessible areas. This would further support Trump’s claims of equivalency between him and Biden, potentially damaging Biden’s standing in the eyes of voters. Although there may be a silver lining for Biden in countering Trump’s charges of a politically motivated case against him, Reeher suggests that drawing attention to the special counsel’s report may be counterproductive.
Hur’s report into Biden’s handling of classified materials presents a significant political challenge for the president, particularly as he gears up for the 2024 election. With the potential for damaged optics and further attacks from Trump, the political fallout from the upcoming report is a cause for concern within the Biden administration.