Hunter Biden tried to secure an office at his father Joe Biden’s think tank, where the president kept classified documents, emails from the first son’s abandoned laptop show.
Joe Biden’s talent agent, Craig Gering, emailed Hunter Biden in April 2016 to discuss the vice president’s plans for the following year, including the establishment of the Penn Biden Center, a Washington, D.C., think tank affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania. Gering wrote that the university’s D.C. office “will be expanded to house a DC office for VP Biden (and Mike, Hunter, and Steve?),” an apparent reference to future Penn Biden Center officials Michael Carpenter and Steve Ricchetti.
Hunter Biden said he hoped the plan would come to fruition.
“That’s the way I would like it to see it shake out,” he said in an April 25, 2016, response to Gering. “BUT please keep this very confidential between us because nothing has been set in stone.”
It is unclear whether the plan shook out as Hunter Biden hoped it would. But the exchange raises questions in light of growing concerns about the discovery of classified documents at the Penn Biden Center and Biden’s home in Wilmington, Del. Biden’s lawyers discovered a trove of documents about Iran, the United Kingdom, and Ukraine at the office. Republicans have expressed concerns about Hunter Biden’s potential access to the records, both because of his erratic behavior during that time period and his foreign business dealings with Ukraine and China.
Gering, the agent for Joe Biden, did not respond to requests for comment. Biden hired Gering’s firm, Creative Artists Agency, after leaving the White House in 2017 to “amplify” his post-White House career. The firm helped Biden secure a book deal and speaking engagements. It also helped Biden with plans for the Penn Biden Center and a think tank at the University of Delaware.
Gering’s April 25, 2016, email to Hunter Biden appears to be based on a conversation the two had about his post-government plans. According to Gering, Hunter Biden told him in their “confidential” meetings that plans were to open think tanks at the University of Delaware and Penn Biden Center. Another focus of Biden’s post-government plans, according to Gering, was “wealth creation.”
While Joe Biden has denied any involvement in his son’s business dealings, a former Hunter Biden business partner, Tony Bobulinski, said he met with both Bidens in Los Angeles in early 2017 to discuss a venture with CEFC China Energy.
“Please keep this very confidential between us because nothing has been set in stone and there’s still a lot of sensitivity around all of this both internally and externally,” Hunter Biden wrote Gering. “He hasn’t made any decisions and this could all be changed overnight.”
When Joe Biden launched the Penn Biden Center in 2018, Hunter Biden had a multimillion-dollar business deal with CEFC China Energy, a Chinese energy conglomerate linked to Chinese intelligence. He was also on the board of Burisma Holdings, a scandal-plagued Ukrainian energy firm. While involved in those deals, Hunter Biden was in the throes of a serious addiction to crack cocaine and prostitutes.
Biden smoked crack at another Washington office he shared with his father and Chinese associates, according to emails and press reports.
The White House and Biden’s lawyers did not respond to requests for comment.
Hunter Biden has maintained access to other family properties where classified documents were stored. He lived in 2018 and 2019 at his father’s house in Wilmington, where the president stored classified records in a garage next to his 1967 Corvette Stingray. The younger Biden was photographed in 2017 cruising around in the American muscle car, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
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