United States President Joe Biden has voluntarily spoken to the special counsel investigating his handling of classified documents when he was out of office, the White House announced on Monday night.
White House spokesman Ian Sams said in a statement that the interview took place at the White House over two days, Sunday and Monday, and ended on Monday.
He said the president and the White House were cooperating with the investigation and being as transparent as possible, while respecting the integrity of the probe. He referred any further questions to the Department of Justice.
According to ABC News, multiple sources familiar with the matter said that special counsel Robert Hur, a former U.S. attorney for Maryland, was present and involved in the questioning of President Biden.
The sources also said that the interview likely indicated that the investigation was nearing its conclusion, but it was not expected to be finished or reported soon. It could be done by the end of the year, they said.
The investigation, which started as a review of Biden’s handling of sensitive government records, has expanded into a broader examination of security protocols and internal processes in the Obama administration, with dozens of witnesses interviewed, ABC News reported last month.
Hur was appointed by Attorney General Merrick Garland in January to lead the investigation as an independent special counsel, after it was revealed that classified documents had been found at Biden’s personal office and home.
The documents, which had classification markings, were discovered at the Penn Biden Center in Washington, D.C., where Biden had a private office after his vice presidency ended in 2017, and at his garage in Wilmington, Delaware. About 25 documents were found in total.
Biden has tried to minimize his legal risk. He said in January that he had found “a handful of documents” that had been “filed in the wrong place” and that he was working with the National Archives and the Justice Department.
“I think you’re going to find there’s nothing there,” he said.