On Saturday, a Fox News reporter questioned former Vice President Joe Biden about the Ukraine scandal — and in response, the 2020 contender told a bald-faced lie.
“I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings,” he said in annoyance to FNC’s Peter Doocy at the so-called “Steak Fry” before turning his attention to President Donald Trump’s alleged misdeeds.
“I know Trump deserves to be investigated. He is violating every basic norm of a president. You should be asking him why is he on the phone with a foreign leader, trying to intimidate a foreign leader. You should be looking at Trump. … Ask the right questions!”
To be clear, the claim that Trump was on the “on the phone with a foreign leader, trying to intimidate a foreign leader” is an unsubstantiated media-concocted conspiracy theory.
(Source: Fox News)
This response earned him praise from some in the left-wing media:
He sure did. https://t.co/QHjfESx1G6
— TJ Ducklo (@TDucklo) September 21, 2019
Biden did exactly the right thing calling out a reporter trying to make this about him. “Ask the right question!” It would be good if every candidate did the same. This. Is. About. Trump. Betraying. America. Period.
— Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) September 22, 2019
However, it’s since been learned that an old story published by The New Yorker earlier this summer completely disproves what Biden had said.
“In December 2015, as Joe Biden prepared to return to Ukraine, his aides braced for renewed scrutiny of [his son] Hunter’s relationship with Burisma [one of Ukraine’s largest natural-gas producers],” the piece reads.
“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. As Hunter recalled, his father discussed Burisma with him just once: ‘Dad said, ‘I hope you know what you are doing,’ and I said, ‘I do.””
The story seems to prove that Biden is a liar.
The scandal — or “conspiracy theory,” as actual conspiracy theorists in the media have described it — concerns Hunter’s shady business dealings in Ukraine. And despite being portrayed as a “conspiracy theory,” this scandal has been covered by ABC News.
“This is an issue Joe Biden has been dealing with since 2014, but it’s come up again because he’s now running for president,” ABC News reporter Tom Llamas announced in a report at the start of the summer.
“Republicans, including President Trump, are trying to hammer Biden over this. At issue, was Hunter Biden profiting off his dad’s work as vice president, and did Joe Biden allow it? We’re talking about millions of dollars in at least two countries.”
The story goes like this: When the 2014 Ukrainian revolution broke out, Biden traveled to Kiev to work with the new government. But three weeks after his arrival, the scandal- and corruption-plagued natural gas company Burisma hired the then-VP’s son.
It was a shocking move given Hunter’s lack of experience. According to Llamas, he suddenly went from being “discharged from the Navy Reserves for testing positive for cocaine” to earning “more than a million dollars a year.”
Listen to the report below:
(Source: ABC News)
The alleged corruption also reportedly extended to China.
“It also happened in China,” Llamas explained. “This video shows Chinese diplomats greeting Vice President Biden as he arrived in Beijing in December of 2013. Right by his side, his son Hunter. Less than two weeks later, Hunter’s firm had new business creating an investment firm in China, involving the government-controlled Bank of China, with reports they hoped to raise $1.5 billion.”
Despite these glaring signs of potential corruption, few mainstream media outlets outside of ABC News have shown any interest in investigating the matter.
Most have instead chosen to falsely portray the scandal as a “conspiracy theory”:
— NewsBusters (@newsbusters) September 20, 2019
Trump & Giulani have already won because this Biden conspiracy theory is now in the mainstream. It will be fanned in the right wing media infrastructure for a year, just like “birther” and “deep state.” Media has to learn from mistakes, not “both sides” it and attack with facts.
— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) September 20, 2019
Trump falls apart and doesn’t deny that he tried to pressure Ukraine into investigating Biden. Trump goes on to float a bogus Joe Biden conspiracy theory and calls for an investigation. pic.twitter.com/GXCOOg53yp
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) September 20, 2019
It also obvious that with this Biden attack, @realDonaldTrump is trying to launch and give life to another conspiracy theory, like Birtherism, Uranium One and other phony memes that jave always been a go-to in his political toolbox and reliable red meat for right-wing media.
— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) September 21, 2019
Trump maniacally demands repeatedly that a reporter “listen to me,” then says of his call that’s part of a whistleblower complaint: “It was a great call. It was a perfect call.”
He then spouts conspiracy theories about Biden. pic.twitter.com/6ab89lIffQ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 22, 2019
Note that these are some of the same people who spent roughly two to three years touting the Russian collusion delusion conspiracy theory and who’ve since touted other conspiracy theories accusing the president of compromising a CIA spy’s identity, purposefully refueling Air Force crafts near one of his Scottish resorts, and suggesting there’s corruption afoot at the Trump International Hotel in Washington D.C.
Yet they think the Ukraine scandal is a “conspiracy theory.” It’s unclear how they’ll respond to confirmation that the former VP lied to FNC’s Doocy.
“[Biden’s answer] is not consistent entirely with the interview that Hunter Biden gave in July to The New Yorker where they say Hunter recalled his father discussed the Ukraine oil company at the heart of the issue with him ‘just once,'” Doocy noted Saturday.
“So the former vice president says they never talked, his son told The New Yorker a couple of months before this really blew up they did talk once.”