Other Presidents Sound All-Clear on Classified Records

Obama, Clinton staffs say documents were turned over to National Archives
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2023 5:30 PM CST
Other Presidents Sound All-Clear on Classified Records
From left, President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton, and Secretary of State John Kerry arrive on Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base in 2016.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

With out-of-place classified documents now unearthed in several states and offices, a couple of former presidents made clear Wednesday that there's nothing to find in their garages or studies. The staffs of former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton told the Hill on Wednesday that all classified material in their bosses' possession was turned over to the National Archives upon leaving office, as the Presidential Records Act dictates. A spokesman for former President George W. Bush, Freddy Ford, said in an interview that the second Bush administration turned over all presidential records—classified and unclassified—after a review in 2008 and 2009, per Insider.

The new Presidential Records Act did not apply to President Jimmy Carter when he left office in 1981, but the AP reports Carter came across classified information at his home at least once since then and gave it to the National Archives. The Carter Center provided no details. Although he wasn't required to, the former president involved federal archivists in preparing his records to be placed in his presidential library in Georgia. The National Archives is considering asking all former presidents and vice presidents to take another look through their files for classified papers, just to be sure, per CNN. (More classified information stories.)

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