With members of the public, especially Republicans, claiming that Hunter Biden received preferential treatment and a sweetheart deal relating to his failure to pay taxes, DOJ officials and Hunter Biden’s attorneys are beginning to defend the investigation’s outcome.
The Hunter Biden Investigation
The investigation into Hunter Biden’s failure to pay taxes has been generating all the wrong kinds of headlines.
When a whistleblower came forward and said the president’s son was receiving preferential treatment, the entire investigative team was moved off the case– raising further questions about what exactly was going on.
The investigation terminated with a plea deal that allowed Biden to “plead guilty to two misdemeanor tax crimes and avoid prison on a felony gun charge if he stays out of trouble,” Politico reported. Republicans have been bashing the deal – but legal experts have given conflicting feedback on whether the deal was appropriate or not, with some arguing the deal was too lenient, and still others arguing the deal was too harsh.
Maggie Abdo-Gomez, a former IRS tax attorney, felt the charges against Biden were harsher than usual. “I’ve only seen them – one time – prosecute someone for failure to pay taxes,” Abdo-Gomez said. “Because the truth is, if we prosecuted for failure to pay taxes, the jails would be full. Forget the drug dealers and the murderers and everybody else. I have a small practice, and I’ve got tons of people that owe taxes.”
Caroline Ciraolo, the former head of the DOJ’s Tax Division, felt the charges were consistent with common practice and that if Biden had “lied or took ‘affirmative acts’ to dodge his taxes, he likely would have faced tougher charges.”
“This is a little bit unique in terms of how they’re utilizing the 7203 misdemeanor charge. I just haven’t seen that too often, mostly because the agents of IRS CI work the most egregious cases, and when they move forward with investigations, they’re looking toward a felony conviction, not necessarily something less than that. The resources of IRS CI are very limited and so that’s their main goal, ultimately – a felony conviction.”
Of course, the DOJ and Hunter Biden’s attorneys are calling the investigations outcome completely appropriate.
Biden’s attorneys not happy
“One of Biden’s attorneys late last week penned a blistering letter accusing House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (R-Mo.) of violating provisions that protect the confidentiality of tax information in his rush to release” the IRS whistleblower’s testimony, The Hill reported.
“Since taking the majority in 2023, various leaders of the House and its committees have discarded the established protocols of Congress, rules of conduct, and even the law in what can only be called an obsession with attacking the Biden family,” Biden’s attorney wrote. “The timing of the agents’ leaks and your subsequent decision to release their statements do not seem innocent – they came shortly after there was a public filing indicating the disposition of the five-year investigation of Mr. Biden. To any objective eye your actions were intended to improperly undermine the judicial proceedings.”
The efforts to undermine Hunter Biden are of course elaborate effort to take down President Biden. And of course, if Hunter was peddling his father’s influence in exchange for cash, or if the DOJ did purposefully treat Hunter Biden with kid gloves, then these are significant happenings worthy of criticism and further inquiry. But it seems just as likely that the GOP is conducting a politically motivated vendetta, unlikely to yield anything of substance.
Harrison Kass is the Senior Editor and opinion writer 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.