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Secret Service does not have visitor records from Biden's home where classified docs were found

By Sarah May on
 January 17, 2023

As President Joe Biden's document mishandling case continues to evolve, the Secret Service on Monday declared that it does not maintain logs of those who visit the commander in chief's Wilmington, Delaware residence, despite the fact that it does provide security there, as the New York Post reports.

That revelation has raised eyebrows, particularly because of the regularity with which the president travels to and stays at the residence, with the outlet having cataloged 52 separate trips and 167 full or partial days spent there since January of 2021.

Scrutiny builds

Questions about the Wilmington home arose in the wake of disclosures by Biden lawyers indicating that classified documents going back to their client's tenure as vice president have been found not just in Delaware, but also at the D.C.-area office of a University of Pennsylvania-affiliated think tank with which he has been involved, as The Hill notes.

Not long after the controversy emerged, Attorney General Merrick Garland tapped Robert Hur to serve as special counsel charged with probing the situation on behalf of the Justice Department, but that has not lessened the concerns voiced by Republicans that Biden's conduct may have constituted a serious national security risk.

As such, Rep. James Comer (R-KY), House Oversight and Accountability Committee chair, further demanded that the administration facilitate the release of visitor logs from the Delaware property, writing to the president's chief of staff, Ron Klain, “Given the serious national security implications, the White House must provide the Wilmington residence's visitor log.”

That request led to the revelation that no such documentation has been created or maintained, and a spokesperson for the White House counsel's office further explained, “Like every president in decades of modern history, [Biden's] personal residence is personal.”

Claims questioned, panned

Despite the insistence of the White House and the Secret Service that logs of the nature requested by Comer even exist, not everyone is convinced that information on who has visited Biden's Wilmington home cannot be provided.

As the Post notes, even if a formal visitor log akin to those produced at the White House is not routinely generated for the president's Delaware home, critics suggest that some form of documentation has likely been created along the way.

Last fall, Tom Fitton of the Judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog group, opined on the topic, “If the Secret Service is doing its job, there has to be visitor records. If there aren't any records, the scandal is much bigger than just a lack of transparency.”

Also reacting to the contention that no documentation exists regarding who has come and gone at the Delaware house was former President Donald Trump, who is also under special counsel investigation for his own handling of classified materials and whose Florida estate was the subject of a controversial FBI raid last summer.

Taking to his Truth Social platform Monday, Trump reacted with jocular incredulity, writing, “The White House just announced that there are no LOGS or information of any kind on visitors to the Wilmington house and flimsy, unlocked, and unsecured, but now very famous, garage.”

“Maybe they are smarter than we think!” Trump added.

Hunter's house?

Complicating matters further for the president in the eyes of his Republican critics are indications that embattled first son Hunter Biden lived at the Wilmington property at various points from 2017 onward, as the Post reports separately.

In the wake of his 2017 divorce, Hunter Biden started using the Wilmington address as his own, going so far as to claim ownership of the home on a 2018 background check form and listing it as his place of residence on credit applications that same year and again in 2019.

It was during this time period that, according to materials discovered on Hunter Biden's infamously abandoned laptop, he was in the throes of serious drug addiction and was spending copious amount of money on prostitutes, arguably rendering him a prime target for would-be blackmailers.

Hunter Biden has also long been the subject of a federal investigation into his taxes as well as his business dealings in foreign countries including China and Ukraine, adding to fears that his presence in the same place classified documents were being improperly stored by his father exposed the nation to serious security risks.

As Fox News notes, even though the White House and the Secret Service are denying the existence of formal visitor logs, it is already well-established that a long list of individuals besides Biden's troubled son visited the Wilmington home during the time period when classified documents were being kept on the property, both during the 2020 campaign conducted largely from its basement and thereafter, with security details and aides always present.

The pressure on Biden is clearly ratcheting up with each subsequent revelation, and though the president himself expressed his intention last week “to speak on all of this,” whether he will be able to provide satisfactory answers to the rapidly growing list of questions and concerns, only time will tell.