DOJ Refuses To Give Congress Audio Of Biden’s Special Counsel Interview

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has refused House Republicans’ demand to hand over audio of President Joe Biden’s reportedly disastrous interview with special counsel Robert Hur.

In early February, the special counsel released a damning report about Biden’s mishandling of classified documents. The report was not only damning for the president, but also for the DOJ as a whole — as it acknowledged Biden had “willfully retained and disclosed classified materials after his vice presidency when he was a private citizen,” but stated that the DOJ had no intention of prosecuting the president for these crimes because of his cognitive decline.

Citing Biden’s significant lapses in memory during his interview with Hur, the report essentially confirmed that Biden’s feeble mind prevents him from being held responsible for his actions.

“Mr. Biden’s memory was significantly limited, both during his recorded interviews with the ghostwriter in 2017 [with whom he shared classified materials], and in his interview with our office in 2023,” the report explained in its executive summary. “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.”

House Republicans demanded that the DOJ provide Congress with the audio of Hur’s interview with Biden as part of its investigation into the president, but the agency has refused.

The DOJ explained its refusal in a Monday letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. James Comer (R-KY).

“Indeed, by the Committees’ own measure, the Department has met your stated informational needs. The Department has produced the two classified documents you requested, the transcripts of the Special Counsel Office interviews of the President and of [Biden memoir ghostwriter] Mark Zwonitzer that you requested, and the correspondence regarding the Special Counsel’s report that you requested,” Assistant Attorney General Carlos Uriarte wrote in the letter.

“The Department is concerned that the Committees’ particular focus on continuing to demand information that is cumulative of information we already gave you—what the President and Mr. Hur’s team said in the interview—indicates that the Committees’ interests may not be in receiving information in service of legitimate oversight or investigatory functions, but to serve political purposes that should have no role in the treatment of law enforcement files,” the letter continued.

Uriarte also claimed that handing over the audio to the committees was not necessary, arguing that to do so could potentially dissuade other witnesses from cooperating with the DOJ in future cases.

In their demand for the audio, House Republicans had issued a subpoena and threatened Attorney General Merrick Garland with contempt of Congress proceedings if they did not turn it over. It is unclear whether Jordan or Comer intend to follow through with these threats, though the Oversight Committee chairman did issue a scathing statement in response to the refusal.

“The Biden Administration does not get to determine what Congress needs and does not need for its oversight of the executive branch,” he wrote. “It’s curious the Biden Administration is refusing to release the audio of President Biden’s interview with the Special Counsel after releasing the transcript. Why shouldn’t the American people be able to hear the actual audio of his answers? The American people demand transparency from their leaders, not obstruction. The Oversight Committee will continue to work with the Judiciary Committee to obtain the information needed for our investigation of President Joe Biden’s willful retention of classified documents. We will respond to the Justice Department soon.”