May 16, 2023

Biden Family Finances

“House Republicans have unveiled what they say are records of $10m in payments to members of the Biden family from foreign entities. Oversight Committee Chair James Comer said Joe Biden's relatives had used the family name to enrich themselves, and the president was ‘involved’…

“The roughly 30-page report detailed what lawmakers say are various companies and financial records tied to family members of Mr Biden, including his son, Hunter Biden, and daughter-in-law, Hallie Biden. It contains records of bank transactions, obtained through subpoena, that Republican lawmakers say are linked to Romania and China.” BBC

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From the Left

The left argues that there is no evidence Joe Biden received any of the money or that it impacted his behavior in office.

Fox & Friends host Steve Doocy pressed Representative James Comer about the nothingburger of an investigation… ‘You don’t actually have any facts to that point. You’ve got some circumstantial evidence,’ Doocy said Thursday morning. ‘And the other thing is, of all those names, the one person who didn’t profit is—there’s no evidence that Joe Biden did anything illegally.’…

“Comer gave a long, complicated explanation of how Biden was definitely involved, even though his name didn’t come up anywhere in the financial documents he had subpoenaed. In fact, Comer admitted that Republicans have yet to find any proof of their accusations. ‘We’re at the very beginning stages of this, but in talking with the informants that we have … we know that Joe Biden was actively involved,’ Comer said. ‘We’re still looking for more bank records that we believe will implicate Joe Biden’s active participation in this.’”

Tori Otten, New Republic

“No reasonable person would argue that Hunter Biden’s obvious efforts to leverage his father’s power and position were beyond moral reproach. Even when Joe Biden was vice president, at least one government official warned the Obama administration about Hunter Biden’s efforts to make money, a warning that emerged during Trump’s first impeachment. Nor is Hunter escaping potential accountability: The Justice Department (a part of Biden’s administration, of course) is investigating him and may soon file charges…

“That they have found evidence of payments flowing from foreign nationals to Hunter Biden-linked LLCs and then (allegedly) to a number of members of Biden’s extended family is used by the Republicans as rhetorical evidence that Joe Biden must somehow be involved. But the opposite argument seems more valid: After all this searching, no concrete link showing money going to the president has turned up. This seems exculpatory more than incriminating.”

Philip Bump, Washington Post

“The committee produced no evidence to suggest that Joe Biden did anything at all to help his son’s overseas business partners, or even that Biden knew which foreign companies his son, other family members and ‘associates’ had transactions with. To the extent that Biden dealt with Romanian or Chinese officials when he was vice president, his statements and actions would appear to have damaged, rather than helped, the interests of the companies in question. And there is no evidence that one penny of any funds Hunter Biden might have been paid by foreign companies ever reached his father…

“Comer vows to continue the so-far fruitless hunt. I have an idea: Why doesn’t he examine how President Donald Trump protected Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman from meaningful international censure following the murder of Post contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi — and how the Saudis later invested $2 billion in the start-up hedge fund launched by Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner?”

Eugene Robinson, Washington Post

From the Right

The right argues that the allegations are serious and there is reason to suspect Joe Biden knew about the payments and was involved himself.

The right argues that the allegations are serious and there is reason to suspect Joe Biden knew about the payments and was involved himself.

“The media is insisting that this is no scandal because there is no direct proof of payments to Joe Biden… Putting aside that this is only the fourth month of an investigation, the media’s demand of a direct payment to President Biden is laughably absurd. The payments were going to his family, but he was the object of the influence peddling…

“The whole purpose of influence peddling is to use family members as shields for corrupt officials. Instead of making a direct payment to a politician, which could be seen as a bribe, you can give millions to his or her spouse or children… Moreover, these emails include references to Joe Biden getting a 10 percent cut of one Chinese deal. It also shows Biden associates warning not to use Joe Biden’s name but to employ code names like ‘the Big Guy.’… Indeed, Hunter complains [in a text to his daughter] that his father is taking half of everything that he is raking in.”

Jonathan Turley, The Hill

“The [New York Times] asserts, using a carbon copy headline of its previous coverage of Biden family corruption, that Biden is completely off the hook ​​for any corruption allegations…

“Unlike the NYT’s favorite punching bag — former President Donald Trump and his family — the Bidens have no clear business aside from decades-long involvement in some of the highest levels of the U.S. government. Biden’s grandkids, nieces, nephews, and ex-daughter-in-law who are all on the receiving end of funds from foreign nationals have no formal experience or education that would qualify them to receive payments from foreign energy companies…

“There’s little doubt Biden knew about at least some of his family’s dealings because he was all too happy to host the people involved. Visitor logs show that Hunter Biden’s associates visited the White House more than 80 times while the elder Biden was vice president. During some of these meetings, several of Hunter’s closest assistants and business partners met with Biden and Biden aides and even attended VP briefings. Vice President Biden also welcomed Hunter on several official trips on Air Force Two, which Hunter appeared to use to secure deals that would enrich his family.”

Jordan Boyd, The Federalist

If the money was earned legitimately, why wasn’t there just a check written out to Hunter Biden? Why would it pass through numerous Limited Liability Companies with no apparent record of conducting any sort of business beyond what was obviously money laundering? What did two of Joe Biden’s grandchildren do to earn large sums of Chinese cash?…

“There have been zero suggestions as to what sorts of goods or services were delivered in exchange for those vast sums of money. How can anyone have the audacity to look at themselves in the mirror and call themself a journalist if that doesn’t at least raise a few questions in your mind? Do none of you honestly have any curiosity about this story or a desire to dig into it if only to prove that there’s some normal, legal explanation?”

Jazz Shaw, Hot Air

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