FBI Searched Biden’s Former Think Tank Office in November

Robert K. Hur, who was appointed by Attorney General Merrick B. Garland as a special counsel to oversee the Biden investigation, began work this week, an official with knowledge of the situation said. Mr. Hur replaced John R. Lausch Jr., the U.S. attorney in Chicago, who initiated the investigation into the matter at Mr. Garland’s request.

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Some of the political pressure on Mr. Biden has eased after the disclosure last week that a small number of classified documents had been found at former Vice President Mike Pence’s house in Indiana. Like Mr. Biden, he has cooperated with the archives and Justice Department.

But Republicans, who captured the House in November, have seized on the documents case as they call for wide-ranging investigations into Mr. Biden, his family and what they claim is the weaponization of the Justice Department under Mr. Garland.

Representative Jim Jordan, a Republican of Ohio who oversees the Judiciary Committee, has been pushing Mr. Garland to release key details of the Biden investigation, including correspondence related to the appointments of Mr. Lausch and Mr. Hur.

On Monday, the department pointedly rejected that request.

“Disclosures to Congress about active investigations risk jeopardizing those investigations and creating the appearance that Congress may be exerting improper political pressure or attempting to influence department decisions in certain cases,” wrote Carlos F. Uriarte, the assistant attorney general for the Office of Legislative Affairs. “Judgments about whether and how to pursue a matter are, and must remain, the exclusive responsibility of the department.”

Mr. Biden has modulated between sharply criticizing Mr. Trump’s cavalier treatment of documents and offering a more measured assessment of the logistical complexities of handling sensitive government papers, even before revelations about his own actions surfaced.

In August, shortly after the search of Mr. Trump’s resort at Mar-a-Lago, Mr. Biden acknowledged that handling classified materials was a byproduct of a president’s frenetic schedule and the round-the-clock demands of the job.

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