“These are just thugs that are going after President Trump,” Representative Tim Burchett followed, technically calling the jury of Trump’s peers the pejorative. “Now granted, he’s not perfect. He shouldn’t have had the files. I get that. But neither should Clinton. Neither should Reagan. Neither should either Bush. Neither should Obama and definitely not Biden, but they all do, and they all have.” Nothing has indicated that every single former president or vice president has taken classified documents out of the White House upon departure; those who have been found, including Mike Pence and President Biden, have promptly returned any documents found. Which Trump actively chose not to do.
Senator Mike Lee did not even engage one ounce with the charges, instead saying, “The Biden administration’s actions can only be compared to the type of oppressive tactics routeinly seen in nations such as Venezuela, Bolivia, and Nicaragua, which are absolutely alien and unacceptable in America.” According to Lee, holding a former president accountable for holding secret documents and actively taking steps to hide them somehow “echoes despotism, making it fundamentally at odds with American democratic values.”
(At least to the last part, Lee is not entirely wrong: it is fundamentally at odds with American history to hold presidents accountable for their crimes—from Iran Contra, to our laundry list of war crimes and military invasions, to sexual harassment.)