Biden challenger Phillips says special counsel report 'affirms' Biden 'cannot continue to serve': 'Sad day'

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    Democratic presidential candidate Dean Phillips reacted to the release of Special Counsel Robert Hur’s report related to President Biden’s handling of classified documents by saying that it “affirms” his belief that Biden is not fit to be president.

    “It’s another sad day for America and particularly for President Biden and his family,” Phillips told Fox News Digital. “While President Biden ‘willfully retained and disclosed classified materials’ the Special Counsel elected not to prosecute him because a jury would likely not convict a ‘well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.'”

    Phillips continued, “The Report simply affirms what most Americans already know, that the President cannot continue to serve as our Commander-in-Chief beyond his term ending January 20, 2025. Already facing the lowest approval numbers in modern history and losing in each of the key battleground states, this Report has all but handed the 2024 election to Donald Trump if Joe Biden is the Democratic nominee – and I invite fellow Democrats to face the truth.”

    Hur announced on Thursday he will not recommend criminal charges against President Biden for mishandling classified documents, according to his report after a months-long investigation into the president’s alleged improper retention of classified records. 

    BIDEN CONSIDERED RESIGNING VICE PRESIDENCY ‘IN PROTEST’ OVER OBAMA’S AFGHANISTAN POLICY: HUR REPORT

    President Joe Biden and Rep. Dean Phillips split image

    President Joe Biden and Rep. Dean Phillips split image (AP Photo)

    Although the report stated that the special counsel “uncovered evidence that President Biden willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen”, the report said it would be “difficult” to secure a conviction based on Biden’s mental state. 

    “We have also considered that, at trial, Mr. Biden would likely present himself to a jury, as he did during our interview of him, as a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory,” Hur wrote in the report. “Based on our direct interactions with and observations of him, he is someone from whom many jurors will want to identify reasonable doubt. It would be difficult to convince a jury that they should convict him—by then a former president well into his eighties—of a serious felony that requires a mental state of willfulness.”

    BIDEN, WHITE HOUSE BLAME ISRAEL WAR FOR FORGETTING BASIC FACTS DURING SPECIAL COUNSEL INTERVIEWS

    This image from Special Council Robert Hur’s investigation released by the Department of Justice on Thursday, February 8, 2024 shows the storage closet inside the Penn Biden Center in March 2021.

    This image from Special Council Robert Hur’s investigation released by the Department of Justice on Thursday, February 8, 2024 shows the storage closet inside the Penn Biden Center in March 2021. (U.S. Department of Justice)

    The report also outlined instances where Biden had a difficult time remembering key details and events including when he served as vice-president and the exact date his son, Beau, died. 

    Several Republican lawmakers agreed with Rep. Phillips and concluded that the report is an example of Biden not having the mental fortitude to be president at 81 years of age.

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    President Joe Biden

    During a series of campaign fundraisers headlined by President Joe Biden in New York City, pro-Palestinian protestors said that Biden was a “danger” for supporting Israel’s war in Gaza. (Yuri Gripas/Abaca/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

    “New Biden defense for otherwise criminal conduct: he’s an old man incapable of remembering who he is, where he is, or what he’s done,” GOP Sen. Josh Hawley posted on X.

    “Biden doesn’t remember his time as VP?,” Hawley wrote in another post. “But somehow he’s qualified to be President for another 4 years?”

    The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News Digital. 

    “Bottom line is, a special counsel in my case decided against moving forward any charges, and this matter is now closed,” Biden said on Thursday after the report was released. “I’ll continue to do what I’ve always done — stay focused on my job like you do, of my job of being president.”

    Fox News Digital’s Brooke Singman contributed to this report
     

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