Watch Biden Spox Clam Up as Reporters Ask About ‘Dad’s’ Voicemail on Hunter’s Laptop From Hell
17:37 GMT 06.07.2022 (Updated: 18:30 GMT 06.07.2022)
© AP Photo / Susan WalshWhite House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, Monday, June 6, 2022
© AP Photo / Susan Walsh
The laptop Hunter Biden left behind at a Delaware computer repair shop in 2019 has become a goldmine of embarrassing and potentially incriminating information, including evidence of an alleged “pay-to-play” scheme in which Hunter would collect cash from foreign business interests in exchange for political access to his father.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre flat out refused to answer questions about the Hunter Biden laptop after being asked to comment on recent reporting featuring a voicemail from Joe Biden to his son discussing overseas business despite assurances by the president that he’d never spoken to his son about this subject.
“Well, first, I’ll say that what the president said stands. So if he – if that’s what the president said [that he never talked to Hunter about business], that is what stands,” the spokeswoman said in a press conference Tuesday.
Pressed for an answer, and asked whether she was disputing that it was the senior Biden’s voice in the recording, Jean-Pierre stressed that she was “not going to talk about alleged materials on a laptop. It’s not happening.”
The spokeswoman recommended that the reporter instead address his question to Hunter Biden’s representative.
A second reporter grilled Jean-Pierre over the non-answer, pointing to the disconnect between Joe Biden’s promises to "always level with" the American people, and the White House’s refusal to discuss the laptop.
“I hear your question, but what I can tell you from here, standing at this podium, is that I cannot comment on any materials from the laptop,” Jean-Pierre reiterated.
Last week, the Daily Mail released what it said was a 2018 voicemail from the elder Biden to his son discussing a New York Times story about Hunter’s alleged shady business dealings with a Chinese energy tycoon and CEFC Energy, a now defunct Chinese energy company, in 2017.
“Hey pal, it’s dad. It’s 8:15 on Wednesday night. If you get a chance just give me a call. Nothing urgent. I just wanted to talk to you,” the voice, believed to be Joe Biden’s said in the message. “I thought the article released online, it’s going to be printed tomorrow in the Times, was good. I think you’re clear. And anyway if you get a chance give me a call, I love you,” he added.
Hunter offered no comment for the NYT article, while James Biden, the financier brother of Joe Biden, said he believed the Chinese businessman’s call was meant for Hunter.
“There is nothing else I have to say. I don’t want to be dragged into this anymore,” James Biden said.
The voicemail stands in stark contrast to Joe Biden’s statement, made on the campaign trail in 2020, that he had “never spoken to [his] son about his overseas business dealings.” The president’s officials have repeated the talking point ad nauseam in the months and years since.
The voicemail adds to previously reported-on evidence of possible involvement by the president in his son’s business activities. In October 2020, the New York Post published excerpts from an email exchange between Hunter Biden associates James Gilliar and Tony Bobulinski discussing an unspecified business deal with a Chinese firm including a 20 percent cut to “H” and 10 percent for “the big guy.” Speaking to Fox News shortly after the article’s publication, Bobulinski said that the “big guy” referred to in the emails was Joe Biden. Biden’s handlers denied this to be the case, aware of the implication that an admission to that effect could lead to a criminal investigation into their boss on graft charges.
The New York Post’s reporting was dismissed by other news outlets at the time, and censored on Twitter and Facebook as potential “Russian disinformation” aimed at tilting the election against Biden. It wasn’t until earlier this year that The New York Times and The Washington Post carried out their own “forensic investigations” of the laptop, confirming its authenticity.
The computer, left behind by the powerful politician’s son at a Delaware computer repair shop in 2019, was eventually handed over to former Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani after the shop’s owner first tried to give it to the FBI but found the agency uninterested in its contents.
The "laptop from hell" contains thousands of emails, text messages from Hunter’s iPhone, photos and videos showing in great detail information about his personal life, including an affinity for crack cocaine and high-priced prostitutes, but more importantly, possible criminal activity implicating both himself and his father.
Paradoxically, the only person to date to have faced any consequences investigating Hunter and Joe Biden’s alleged "pay-to-play" schemes was Donald Trump. In early 2020, Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives on abuse of power and obstruction of Congress charges over a phone call he had with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in 2019 asking Zelensky to reopen an investigation into Hunter’s business with a Ukrainian energy company called Burisma. Biden publicly boasted in 2018 about how he threatened to withhold a $1 billion loan to Ukraine unless it fired a prosecutor investigating Burisma’s dealings and his son amid suspicions of money laundering. After the prosecutor was dismissed, the investigation was dropped. The Senate acquitted Trump.