Just-released transcripts from a congressional hearing held last month have confirmed previously-unsubstantiated reports that a State Department official had once raised concerns about former Vice President Joe Biden’s son and his “lucrative” career.
Released Thursday, transcripts confirm that career State Department official George Kent testified in a closed-door hearing on Oct. 15 about the pushback he faced from the Obama administration when he first broached Hunter Biden’s activities in 2015.
“I was on a call with somebody on the vice president’s staff and I cannot recall who it was, just briefing on what was happening into Ukraine,” Kent said during the hearing.
“I raised my concerns that I had heard that Hunter Biden was on the board of a company owned by somebody that the U.S. government had spent money trying to get tens of millions of dollars back and that could create the perception of a conflict of interest.”
Burisma is one of Ukraine’s largest natural-gas producers and had been embroiled in accusations of corruption for years, up until the prosecutor assigned to investigate it was booted from his position in 2016 on orders from Hunter’s father, then-VP Biden.
In response to Kent’s concerns, an unnamed official on then-Vice President Biden’s staff basically told the longtime State Department official to buzz off.
“The message that I recall hearing back was that the Vice President’s son Beau was dying of cancer and that there was no further bandwidth to deal with family-related issues at that time,” he testified.
The release of these transcripts comes amid a growing body of evidence that Hunter and other members of the Biden family benefited financially and career-wise from the elder Biden’s position as America’s vice president.
On Wednesday a report emerged that even the elder Biden’s younger brother, Frank, appeared to benefit.
“In taped remarks to the 2013 American Equine Summit obtained by Politico, Democratic Florida state legislator Joe Abruzzo and the younger Biden spoke frankly about how the vice president played a key role in the passage of a horse slaughter ban after being lobbied by his brother,” the Washington Free Beacon reported.
“When oil heiress and horse enthusiast Victoria McCullough took up the pet cause of banning horse slaughter operations in the United States in 2008, she hired Abruzzo to lobby Congress on her behalf. Abruzzo enlisted the support of Frank Biden, who was lobbying the Florida legislature on behalf of a charter school project.”
“My brother’s long-term relationships in the Senate proved to be the final nail in the coffin to be able to pull this thing forward,” Frank openly admitted in the clip below:
As for Hunter, he’s publicly suggested that the only reason Burisma chose to hire him was because of his father.
“I don’t think that there’s a lot of things that would have happened in my life if my last name wasn’t Biden,” he said in an ABC News interview last month. “Because my dad was Vice President of the United States, there’s literally nothing, as a young man or as a full-grown adult that — my father in some way hasn’t had influence over.”
Flashback to 2014.
“Ukrainians sick of corruption revolted. Vice President Joe Biden went to Kiev to help the new government. But then something strange happened,” ABC News journalist Tom Llamas reported over the summer.
“Just three weeks later, a Ukrainian natural gas company accused of corruption appoints Hunter Biden … to their board of directors, paying his firm more than a million dollars a year.”
Moreover, Burisma hired Hunter despite the younger Biden having just been discharged from the U.S. Navy Reserves months earlier for testing positive for cocaine.
“He had served on other boards but had no known experience in Ukraine or natural gas,” Llamas added.
Listen to his full report below:
(Source: ABC News)
Both Hunter and his father have denied allegations of wrongdoing, with the former VP going so far as to claim he never even spoke with his son about his work for Burisma. That has been shown to be a lie.
Yet neither have adequately accounted for the many ways in which the younger Hunter seemed to continually benefit from his father’s political power.
At the age of 21, Hunter was paid an untold sum of money by a large credit card company based in Delaware, the state his father Joe Biden represented in the Senate from 1973 to 2009. And during those years, the senior Biden backed a bankruptcy bill that wound up hurting consumers when it became law in 2005:
FLASHBACK: While then-Senator Joe Biden pushed for legislation promoted by the credit card industry, his son Hunter Biden was being paid as a “consultant” by MBNA, a banking corporation headquartered in Delaware. https://t.co/4yP1uoe4d7 #BidenInc
— Trump War Room (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@TrumpWarRoom) October 13, 2019
All Hunter has said of his lucrative career is that he acted with “poor judgment.” It’s as if he’s tried to downplay his potential corruption by casting it as an act borne from youthful ignorance versus sin.
“In retrospect, look, I think that it was poor judgment on my part,” he said in the ABC News interview last month. “I think that it was poor judgment because I don’t believe now, when I look back on it — I know that there was — [I] did nothing wrong at all. However, was it poor judgment to be in the middle of something that is a swamp in many ways? Yeah.”