WASHINGTON (AP) — Attorney General Merrick Garland named Robert Hur to oversee the investigation into President Joe Biden’s handling of classified documents on Thursday. Hur is a former federal prosecutor who has worked with many Republicans throughout his law enforcement career.
Hur was named special counsel by Garland on Thursday, after the White House acknowledged that Obama administration documents with classified markings were discovered in one of Biden’s Delaware homes. The White House announced on Monday that similar documents had been discovered in a Washington office.
Hur has been a partner at the law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher since April 2021, where he focuses on enforcement, investigations, and litigation.
He joined the firm shortly after leaving the Justice Department, where he was a member of the senior leadership team as the top adviser to then-Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein for about a year. Hur was then nominated by President Donald Trump to be the United States Attorney for the District of Maryland, a position he held from April 2018 to February 2021.
Hur worked as a U.S. attorney on “numerous high-profile matters involving national security, cybercrime, public corruption, and financial fraud,” according to his biography.
Hur previously worked at the Justice Department, first as an assistant U.S. attorney from 2007 to 2014, and then as counsel and special assistant to Christopher Wray, now the director of the FBI, when he was in charge of the department’s criminal division. According to his biography, Hur handled counterterrorism, corporate fraud, and appellate matters in that position.
Hur worked in private practise at King & Spalding in between stints at the Justice Department.
He clerked for federal Appeals Judge Alex Kozinski, who was nominated by President Ronald Reagan, after graduating from Stanford Law School in 2001. From 2002 to 2003, he worked as a law clerk for then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist, a staunch conservative nominated to the court by President Richard Nixon and nominated for promotion to chief justice by Reagan.
Hur has donated to at least three Republican political campaigns, according to federal campaign filings. He gave $500 to Republican former U.S. Attorney Christina Nolan in January 2022, when she was running in the GOP Senate primary in Vermont, which she lost. Hur also gave $200 to Maryland GOP Gov. Larry Hogan in 2017 and $201 to Arizona GOP Sen. John McCain during his presidential campaign in 2008.
Hur was also involved in Trump’s law enforcement agenda to crack down on violent gangs like MS-13. In 2017, he appeared alongside then-press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in the White House briefing room to preview a trip Trump was planning to Long Island to discuss the goal of eradicating MS-13.
And, while he has a history of working for Republicans, he is also well-liked by Democrats. As Hur prepared to leave the federal government in 2021, Maryland’s Democratic senators, Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, praised him for his “excellent service” as the state’s United States Attorney. According to them, Hur “upheld the highest traditions of the office and the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), and faithfully followed the facts and the law.”
CHANGE (Jan. 12, 2023, 7:30 p.m. ET): An earlier version of this article stated incorrectly which president nominated William Rehnquist to the Supreme Court. President Richard Nixon, not President Ronald Reagan, nominated him. (He was later nominated for chief justice by Reagan.)