Did Trump Really Call For the Hunter Biden to Face The Death Penalty? – Critics of former President Donald Trump are accusing him of suggesting that Hunter Biden, the troubled son of President Joe Biden, should have received a far harsher sentence for his failure to file and pay past income taxes – namely, the “death penalty.”
The hubbub started after journalist Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) tweeted on Tuesday, “Trump suggests Hunter Biden should’ve received a death sentence.” Rupar shared a screenshot of Trump’s message and speculated that the former president was calling for the younger Biden to receive capital punishment.
Now in fairness to the former president, it isn’t technically what Trump wrote on his Truth Social platform:
“Weiss is a COWARD, a smaller version of Bill Barr, who never had the courage to do what everyone knows should have been done. He gave out a traffic ticket instead of a death sentence. Because of the two Democrat Senators in Delaware, they got to choose and/or approve him. Maybe the judge presiding will have the courage and intellect to break up this cesspool of crime. The collusion and corruption is beyond description. TWO TIERS OF JUSTICE!”
That was, of course, signature Trump hyperbole – yet, it was enough that media outlets quickly pounced. Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone were among the outlets that jumped on the story, reading between the lines and then offering an opinion of what Trump may have meant.
It was just as likely that the former president was making a point that others have also made about different tiers of justice in the United States.
Hunter Biden Did Get a Deal
It was last month that Hunter Biden agreed to a plea deal with prosecutors in which he would plead guilty to two misdemeanor tax charges for failing to pay taxes in 2017 and 2018. As part of that deal, the younger Biden further agreed to be charged with, but not prosecuted for, lying on a form about his drug use when he sought to purchase a handgun.
The deal enraged conservatives, who have claimed that Hunter Biden received special treatment – and that others would have faced jail time. Lying on the form is a felony.
Trump and the Death Penalty
Though it is still doubtful that Donald Trump would actually seek the death penalty for tax cheats, the former president has been clearer that he would impose such a punishment on drug dealers.
“We’re going to be asking everyone who sells drugs, gets caught selling drugs, to receive the death penalty for their heinous acts,” Trump said during his campaign announcement. “Because it’s the only way.”
In an interview with Fox News’ Bret Baier, Trump doubled down on his hardline position.
“That’s the only way you’re going to stop it,” he said, though he also expressed some hesitation about whether that view would be embraced. “If you want to get rid of it – now, I don’t know that this country is ready for it. I just don’t know. You know, every time I say it, I sort of like – it’s – it’s not easy to say the death penalty.”
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.