On Monday evening, Stephen Colbert addressed the classified documents found at Joe Biden’s private residences and false equivalencies to the justice department’s investigation into Donald Trump’s mishandling of top-secret files. Last week, two sets of classified documents were returned to the National Archives by Biden’s lawyers.
Over the weekend, Biden aides found five additional pages of classified material at his personal residence in Delaware. “Oh my God! This just won’t end,” said the Late Show host. “Joe is making me do something I swore I’d never do: care about what happens in Delaware.”
The new stack of five pages is part of the same stash reported last week, but just revealed as Biden’s team did not have security clearance to continue the search. “OK, Biden team: how about before you make any announcements, you wait until the whole search is finished,” Colbert suggested.
“If this goes on till the spring, they can kill two birds and combine the search with the White House Easter Egg Hunt.”
The discovery of classified documents is “playing right into Republicans’ hands”, Colbert explained, as the House GOP has demanded two years of visitor logs from Biden’s Delaware home. “They’re going to learn about all of Biden’s regular visitors: Ben, Jerry, Baskin, Robbins, Ambassador Häagen, Admiral Daz and most scandalous of all, a solo visit from Mrs Softee,” Colbert joked.
Republican lawmakers have also used the opportunity to claim a double standard in the treatment of Trump. The head of the House oversight committee, for example, complained to CNN about “discrepancies” between the handling of Trump’s classified documents seized at Mar-a-Lago and Biden’s situation.
“Yes, there is such a discrepancy,” Colbert deadpanned. “Joe Biden’s own lawyers are the ones who found his documents, then immediately turned them in to the National Archives. The other guy hid the documents, then his lawyers lied, obstructed or, in Rudy’s case, fell asleep outside the M&M store in a kiddie pool full of Carlo Rossi.”
On Late Night, Seth Meyers checked in on several intensifying investigations into the former president. On Friday, a New York court issued the maximum fine allowed under state law, $1.6m, for running a years-long tax fraud scheme. “I think it’s great that Trump’s company was held criminally accountable, but only $1.6 million? Trump probably keeps that much change in his big-ass coat.”
And the justice department issued another round of subpoenas as part of its investigation into the January 6 attack on the Capitol. “This is yet again one of the many differences between the situations Trump and Biden find themselves in,” Meyers explained. “Trump is under multiple separate criminal investigations, he’s lied about them at every turn, refused to cooperate, and is now calling the prosecutor investigating him a terrorist,” referring to a Truth Social post in which Trump railed railed against special counsel Jack Smith.
“Biden is at least cooperating,” Meyers continued. “The worst thing you can say about Biden is that there was no reason for him to keep classified documents in the garage where he also parks his Corvette.
“Why were the documents specifically next to the Corvette?” he added. “Does he think reading documents make you look like a nerd, so he wanted something kickass next to him?”
And in Los Angeles, Jimmy Kimmel also touched on the five classified documents found at Biden’s residence “along with 9,000 stolen packets of Sweet’n Low”.
“That brings the number of documents Biden had laying around up to two dozen,” he noted, “and of course though he himself withheld more than 300 classified documents that he refused to return, Trump weighed in bigly on this.”
In a Truth Social post, the former president called Mar-a-Lago a “highly secured facility, with Security Cameras all over the place…I have INFO on everyone!”
“Sure, you had 300 top-secret documents in your bra closet, behind a ranch dressing fountain,” Kimmel retorted. “Of course you had info on everyone. You had info on everyone except for that one time Kanye brought the white supremacist over for dinner, then you had no info at all.”
Republicans have taken the chance to stoke outrage, Kimmel added. “They say they want Biden treated the same way they treated Trump, but they still don’t want Trump treated the way they treated Trump. It’s very complicated. The big question is: why are these documents even allowed out of the White House at all?”