National Archives Asks Living Presidents, VPs To Search For Classified Documents


Diana Glebova White House Correspondent
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The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) sent a letter to staffers of former living presidents and vice presidents on Thursday asking for them to ensure they have no classified documents in their possession, CNN reported.

The letter pertains to those covered by the Presidential Records Act (PRA), stemming back to former President Ronald Reagan, CNN reported.

“The responsibility to comply with the PRA does not diminish after the end of an administration,” the letter reads, according to the outlet. “Therefore, we request that you conduct an assessment of any materials held outside of NARA that relate to the Administration for which you serve as a designated representative under the PRA, to determine whether bodies of materials previously assumed to be personal in nature might inadvertently contain Presidential or Vice Presidential records subject to the PRA, whether classified or unclassified.”

PALM BEACH, FL – JANUARY 11: The Atlantic Ocean is seen adjacent to President Donald Trump’s beach front Mar-a-Lago resort, also sometimes called his Winter White House, the day after Florida received an exemption from the Trump Administration’s newly announced ocean drilling plan on January 11, 2018 in Palm Beach, Florida. Florida was the only state to receive an exemption from the announced deregulation plan to allow offshore oil and gas drilling in all previously protected waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The letter comes as a response to former Vice President Mike Pence, President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump all having classified documents in their possession. (RELATED: National Archives Refuses To Give House Republicans Information On Biden Docs By Deadline)

Pence’s team discovered that he had classified documents in his Indiana home in January, and notified NARA for their removal. The FBI came to collect the documents while Pence was not home, despite his team promising to comply with turning them over.

Biden’s lawyers found classified documents at the Penn Biden Center, a think tank where he held an office as vice president, on Nov. 2. More documents were discovered at his Delaware home on Dec. 20, Jan. 11, Jan. 12 and Jan. 20.

Trump had classified documents in his possession in Mar-a-Lago, and did not provide NARA with all the documents despite being requested to do so. The FBI raided Trump’s Florida residence in August, and Trump has maintained that he had the authority to declassify the documents.