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Garland says it would've been 'absurd' for him to block special counsel's comments on Biden's memory

Attorney General Merrick Garland said it would have been “absurd” for him to forcefully exclude Robert Hur’s controversial comments on President Biden’s memory in his special counsel report released last month.

Hur’s report into Biden last month described the president as a “a sympathetic, well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.” The White House immediately pushed back on what it called Hur’s “gratuitous and inappropriate criticisms.”

When asked about those who say he should have prevented Hur from making those comments, Garland reiterated that the Justice Department should be independent. He also said the White House never told him that he should have stepped in.

“When the president announced my nomination, he said to me directly and then to the American public that he intended to restore the independence and the integrity of the Justice Department and that he wanted me to serve as the lawyer for the American people, not the lawyer for the president,” Garland said during a press conference Thursday.

“I sincerely believe that that’s what he intended then, and I sincerely believe that that’s what he intends now,” he added.

The nation’s top law enforcement officer was pressed further on whether he believed Hur used the appropriate language to describe Biden’s mental state.

“I said from the very beginning, that I would make public, the report of the special — of all the special counsels appointed during a period of my service. That is consistent with the regulation, which requires a special counsel to explain what the special counsel’s decisions are,” Garland said.

“The idea that an attorney general would edit or redact or censor the special counsel’s explanation for why the special counsel reached the decision that special counsel did? That’s absurd,” he added later on.

In a press conference following the release of the report last month, Biden angrily defended himself and emphasized that his memory is “fine.”


Source: The Hill

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