Live updates: Special Counsel Hur defends evaluating Biden 'mental state' in classified document probe

Special Counsel Robert Hur in testimony to Congress on Tuesday defended his decision to assess the “memory and overall mental state” of President Joe Biden during his investigation into Biden’s retention of classified documents after he was vice president.

“My task was to determine whether the president retained or disclosed national defense information willfully,” Hur told the House Judiciary Committee.

“I could not make that determination without assessing the president’s state of mind,” Hur testified.

The special counsel in his final report on the probe concluded that Biden “willfully retained and disclosed classified materials” which the special counsel wrote presented “serious risks to national security.”

But Hur also said in that report that he decided not to criminally prosecute Biden for his handling of that material, in part because of the president’s allegedly poor memory, among other things.

“I had to consider the President’s memory and overall mental state and how a jury likely would perceive his memory and mental state in a criminal trial,” Hur testified Tuesday.

Biden and his lawyers have strongly disputed Hur’s characterization of the president’s memory, and have pointed to details in the the special counsel’s report that undercut the claim that he willfully retained classified documents.

Democratic members of the Judiciary panel on Tuesday released the transcripts of Hur’s interviews of Biden.

Former Special Counsel Robert K. Hur testifies alongside a video of President Joe Biden before the House Judiciary Committee on March 12, 2024 in Washington, DC.

Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images

This is developing news. Check back for updates.

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