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Joe Biden did a bevy of interviews this weekend, in which he was asked the inevitable question about his son Hunter’s business dealings on the board of the Ukrainian gas company, Burisma.
But he wasn’t able to give a satisfactory answer to the question. Indeed, his answers created even more questions.
Here he is being interviewed by Telemundo’s Jose Diaz Balart.
Biden Refuses To Admit It Was Wrong For His Son To Serve On Burisma’s Board While He Was VP pic.twitter.com/U1DNDgDrLt
— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) December 6, 2019
Diaz Balart makes the point that Hunter was making $50-80,000 per month while Joe was the Vice President (and the point man on Ukraine). Diaz Balart also made an important point about Hunter being on the board of a company partnered with a Chinese state-controlled entity. Burisma also had a foreign government connection with the founder/owner being a Ukrainian minister.
But Joe Biden saw nothing wrong with that and no conflict.
Biden also did an interview with NPR that was published on Sunday. In it, he said that he would refuse to comply with any subpoena to testify before the Senate about Ukraine, his son or his son’s business dealings, saying he didn’t want people to “take the eye off the ball” – that is be distracted from getting President Donald Trump.
According to Democrats it was obstruction that Trump dared to challenge them in the courts. So sure sounds like it would be obstruction if he refused, according to Democratic standards.
Biden also claimed that “Nobody warned me about a potential conflict of interest” concerning his son. When the interviewer pointed out his staff was in fact apprised of the potential conflict by State Department official George Kent, Biden blamed his staff and said “no one told me.” Is he kidding? He has to be told that’s a conflict of interest, when he’s the point man on Ukraine for the Obama administration? If he has to be told that, that would be indicative of an even greater problem.
Two big problems with that.
Number one, he was apprised, in fact, by Adam Hochstein. So what Biden said is untrue.
“Amos Hochstein, the Obama Administration’s special envoy for energy policy, raised the matter with Biden, but did not go so far as to recommend that Hunter leave the board,” @adamentous reported in the @NewYorker in July. https://t.co/xbRpDM6s6Y
— Kenneth P. Vogel (@kenvogel) December 8, 2019
Number two, he’s been repeatedly told about conflicts of interest involving Hunter, even as far back as 2008. In this interview with Tom Brokaw in 2008, he goes into that same “no one has said anything, nothing wrong was done” spiel:
Tom Brokaw asks Joe Biden about his son, Hunter, in 2008:
“Wasn’t it inappropriate for someone like you in the middle of all this to have your son collecting money from this big credit card company while you were on the floor protecting its interests?” pic.twitter.com/avkbN6hX2N
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) October 10, 2019
And questions have been specifically raised about Hunter being on the Burisma board virtually since he was appointed to the board in April 2014.
Here are reporters asking questions from May 2014 with responses from Biden’s spokesperson and VP office.
Also plenty of reporters… pic.twitter.com/jllTMU49Ny
— Marcus Baram (@mbaram) December 9, 2019
Despite that, here’s Biden during an interview last month with PBS saying he didn’t even know that Hunter was on the board.
Check out what happens when you ask Joe Biden about Hunter.
"I did not know he was on the board of that company, and nobody's asserted that it was illegal to be on the board, and that he did anything wrong" pic.twitter.com/P9FLpGJbXd
— Brian B (@ogbrian_b) December 3, 2019
Really? Joe, your office knew since May 2014, a month after he was appointed. You had a conversation with your son about Burisma, as he confirmed to the New Yorker, in December 2015, when Hunter was preparing a trip to Ukraine. “Dad said, ‘I hope you know what you are doing,’ and I said, ‘I do.’”
Why is Biden now seemingly falsely suggesting he was ignorant of this? Why is he falsely claiming no one told him about any possible conflicts?
Biden also spoke to Axios in an interview running this weekend. Biden insisted he had no idea about what his son did, even now, despite all the controversy it has caused. Biden also stated he had no interest in finding out. Despite that, he insisted it had to be appropriate because he “trusted his son.” Then he tried to deflect to the Trump family.
Interview just aired on HBO. https://t.co/r1mtT9V1xF
— Jonathan Swan (@jonathanvswan) December 8, 2019
"Vote for me. I trust Hunter Biden's decision making skills." is not QUITE the winning slogan some might have imagined. https://t.co/utUnSSjHw3
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) December 9, 2019
He’s had an incredible amount of time to prepare to answer these questions and his answers are still horrible.