Is the GOP’s War on Hunter Biden Overkill? “Where’s Hunter?”
That was one of President Trump’s first questions after being indicted. Trump was of course referring to Hunter Biden, President Joe Biden’s son, who has been under investigation for tax fraud and “alleged unethical relationships with foreign governments.”
“The former president and his allies have seized on Hunter Biden, seeking to make the case that the president’s son has eluded criminal charges,” The Hill reported. “The question has become kind of a dog-whistle to Trump’s base, even appearing on T-shirts and bumper stickers.”
Yeah, no you know what. That’s called a deflection.
But Hunter has been out and about, appearing regularly at White House events, drawing a contrast between the early days of Biden’s administration, when the troubled first son was rarely seen.
Hunter Biden Making Appearances
“This week,” The Hill reported, Hunter “joined family members including his young son, Beau, at the Easter Egg Roll, after spending the holiday weekend with the Biden family at Camp David. And as the president traveled to Ireland a day later, Hunter Biden was at his side along with his aunt, President Biden’s sister Valeria Owens.”
The emergence of Hunter coincides with a strategic shift, as he seeks to take the offensive after years of weathering Republican criticism and accusations. In February, for example, Hunter asked for a criminal investigation into the Trump allies Hunter believes stole information from his personal laptop.
Despite the strategy shift, Hunter will still need to play defense; the House Oversight Committee, with a Republican majority at the helm, has vowed to pursue Hunter vigorously. Speaking of which, conservatives latched onto Hunter’s recent trip to Ireland with his father.
“Let’s just remind the Newsmax viewers: When Hunter flew with Vice President Biden on Air Force 2 to China, the week after he came home, he inked a deal for $1.3 billion with the national bank of communist China, a deal that JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs could never have gotten,” a former Trump adviser said on Newsmax. “So, my question is, what deal is Hunter going to get from some Irish billionaire next week?”
The White House suggested that Hunter joining his father for the Ireland trip was no big deal.
“Historically, family members of presidents and first ladies have frequently joined them during international travel,” a White House spokesperson said. “Current practices are consistent with those used by prior administration.” And that’s correct. Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump joined their presidential father in 2019 – for a trip to Ireland of all places – where the two went on a pub crawl the night before commemorating the 75th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Normandy.
Does It Matter?
I’ve been repeatedly critical of GOP efforts to focus on Hunter Biden. I’m just not convinced it’s a worthwhile pursuit. It seems like a waste of taxpayer funds and of political oxygen. It feels nakedly political, petulant, tic for tac. Yes, Democrats went hard on Trump and his family for years; the Hunter Biden investigation is reciprocal – but that doesn’t make it appropriate or fruitful.
My guess is that Republicans are grasping at straws with their Hunter Biden investigation. Concern over Hunter’s trip to Ireland reinforces the feeling that this is much ado about nothing. Hunter went to Ireland with his dad. I don’t think it’s worth much fuss or speculation.
Harrison Kass is the Senior Editor at 19FortyFive. An attorney, pilot, guitarist, and minor pro hockey player, Harrison joined the US Air Force as a Pilot Trainee but was medically discharged. Harrison holds a BA from Lake Forest College, a JD from the University of Oregon, and an MA from New York University. Harrison listens to Dokken.