Former vice president Joe Biden faces increased scrutiny on his son Hunter’s shady business deals in the Ukraine and China, but it’s not the first time the Bidens’ conflict of interest has caused problems in a presidential campaign.
More than a decade ago, Tom Brokaw asked Biden to his face about a different arrangement with a Delaware credit company called MBNA, which hired Hunter on a six-figure salary and paid then Sen. Joe Biden hundreds of thousands more in campaign contributions to win his favor.
Tom Brokaw calling out Joe-Hunter Biden’s corruption in 2008:
“Wasn’t it inappropriate for someone like you in the middle of all this to have your son collecting money from this big credit card company while you were on the floor protecting its interests?” pic.twitter.com/CORqFD6w1a
— Ibrahim (@ibrahimpols) October 5, 2019
“Tom Brokaw calling out Joe-Hunter Biden’s corruption in 2008: ‘Wasn’t it inappropriate for someone like you in the middle of all this to have your son collecting money from this big credit card company while you were on the floor protecting its interests?” Ibrahim posted to Twitter with a video of the exchange.
The video features Brokaw highlighting a Wall Street Journal story from August 25, 2008 that pointed out “Biden’s candidacy … is bringing new scrutiny to his family’s business dealings, especially those of his son Hunter, 38 years old.”
“That’s a reference to your son being hired right out of law school by a big company here in Delaware that’s in the credit card business, MBNA. He got about $100,000 a year, as I recall. You received $214,000 in campaign contributions from the company and from its employees,” Brokaw told Biden.
“At the same time, you were fighting for bankruptcy bill that MBNA really wanted to get passed through the Senate making it much tougher for everyone to file bankruptcy,” he continued. “Senator Obama was opposed to the bill. Among other things, you couldn’t in fact claim that you had a problem because of big medical bills. You voted against an amendment that would call for a warning on predatory lending. You also … opposed efforts to strengthen the protection of people in bankruptcy.
“This is an issue that you’ve heard about before. Your son was working for the company at the same time. In retrospect, wasn’t it inappropriate for someone like you in the middle of all this to have your son collecting money from the big credit card company while you were on the floor protecting its interests?” Brokaw questioned.
Much like Biden’s deflections and denials during the current presidential race, he also refused to acknowledge the shady shenanigans in 2008, alleging instead that his son could have made much more money working on Wall Street.
“Absolutely not,” Biden responded to Brokaw. “My son graduated from Yale Law School. The starting salary on Wall Street is $140,000 a year as a lawyer, options he had.
“He came home to work for a bank, surprise, surprise,” Biden said, clearly bitter about the question.
It’s been a similar reaction to President Trump’s recent focus on Hunter Biden’s alleged corruption in Ukraine and China, two countries his father oversaw relations with as he collected massive checks from businesses willing to pay for his “expertise.”
Trump broached the subject in a phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenski this summer, and House Democrats are now attempting to leverage the revelation to push for the president’s impeachment.
Biden, meanwhile, hasn’t denied reports Hunter raked in hundreds of millions, but alleges he never discussed his son’s business dealings with him. Biden has stood by that claim despite confirmed reports Hunter Biden traveled with him on at least one official U.S. envoy to China, then conducted private business deals while Joe Biden met with the country’s communist leaders.
Just last year, Biden boasted during a Council on Foreign Relations panel that he pressured Ukraine to fire a prosecutor looking into corruption at a company that employed his son by threatening to withhold $1 billion in U.S. aid.
Biden and House Democrats are now pushing to impeach Trump because he asked Zelenski to look into Biden’s claims, and they’re alleging Trump threatened to withhold U.S. aid to make his case. The controversy, of course, is reigniting interest in Hunter Biden’s shenanigans, and the 76-year-old career politician continues to deny anything nefarious.
The attention, he insists, should be on President Trump.
“I’ve never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings,” the 76-year-old career politician told CNN. “You should be looking at Trump.”
“Trump is doing this because he knows I’ll beat him like a drum and he is using the abuse of power and every element of the presidency to try to do something to smear me,” an irritated Biden chided reporters.
“Everybody looked at this and everybody who’s looked at it said there’s nothing there,” he insisted. “Ask the right question.”