Hunter Biden’s questionable past and business dealings could undo dad’s bid for White House

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Democratic front-runner Joe Biden has survived a series of poor debates, weathered criticism that he is out of touch and gaffe prone to still maintain a lead in a majority of the polls. But it’s the tangled tale of his middle child Hunter that threatens to scuttle the former vice president’s third bid for the White House.

In Democratic circles, there have been whispers for years that Hunter Biden could become a liability for his father. Questions about the younger Biden’s overseas business dealings in Ukraine and China as well as his checkered past at home — he dated his brother’s widow, used cocaine, bought crack and allegedly spent so much money in strip clubs and on prostitutes that his family couldn’t pay their bills — has made him an easy target for President Trump.

Trump, who is facing an impeachment inquiry, has aggressively gone after chief rival Biden and his family. Some accusations the president has lobbed can be proved. The majority cannot.

 

What’s true is that Hunter has become a punching bag for the White House and Trump’s closest allies. The 49-year-old’s controversial decision to accept a high-paying position at a gas company in Ukraine with little to no experience has become the backdrop of a whistleblower complaint against Trump and is reshaping the 2020 presidential race. Trump has repeatedly accused Hunter Biden of ethical lapses and profiting off his famous father’s last name — something Trump’s own children have been widely criticized for doing.

 

Earlier this week, Trump tweeted, “Where’s Hunter? He has totally disappeared! Now looks like he has raised and scammed even more countries! Media is AWOL.”

The social media hits against the Bidens made by a sitting president have been relentless and somewhat shifted the focus of the investigation against Trump to an attack on Hunter Biden.

On Tuesday, Hunter Biden finally broke his silence, acknowledging in an ABC interview that his last name likely played a role in getting a lucrative Ukraine gig while his father was vice president and handled the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy. However, he strongly pushed back on growing criticism from Republicans and the White House that he was unqualified for the positions he held on several boards.

 

Hunter Biden argued that despite a lack of Ukraine or natural gas industry experience he “had as much knowledge as anybody else on the board, if not more.”

When Hunter Biden joined the board of the gas company a half-decade ago, its owner, a former Ukrainian government minister working to rebuild Burisma Holdings‘ image, was facing a money-laundering investigation. In fact, the region was so rife with corruption that one of Hunter Biden’s investment firm partners at the time ended his business relationship with Biden. Despite warnings of corruption, Hunter Biden stayed on and pulled in $50,000 a month, Newsweek reported.

His colleagues at Burisma included chairman Alan Apter, who had nearly three decades of experience under his belt at Merrill Lynch, Renaissance Capital, Troika Dialog and Morgan Stanley. Devon Archer, who was appointed as director of Burisma in 2014, co-founded Rosemont Seneca Partners with Biden. He also served as a senior adviser to John Kerry and co-chaired the National Financial Committee.

 

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