Despite President Joe Biden’s repeated claims that he never discussed business with son Hunter, a newly released Freedom of Information request has revealed the office of the then-Vice President exchanged nearly 20,000 emails with investment firm Rosemont Seneca.
It’s not the first time the President’s professional relationship with his son has been called into question. In July, Hunter’s former business associate Devon Archer testified to the House Oversight Committee that the President had joined at least 20 phone calls, and held in-person meetings, with his son’s foreign business associates. Joe Biden allegedly did not discuss business on these calls, with his purpose deemed to be access to the Biden “brand” for his son’s colleagues.
The unique selling point of the “brand” assisted Hunter in securing financial opportunities, including joining the Ukrainian energy firm Burisma for a reported salary of $1million a year. The dismissal of Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin, who was allegedly investigating Burisma around the same time, was called into question by Oversight Committee chairman James Comer last month.
“The Committee on Oversight and Accountability seeks information from the U.S. Department of State to provide context for certain sudden foreign policy changes that occurred while Joe Biden was Vice President, particularly regarding Ukraine while then-Vice President Biden’s son served on the board of directors of a company being investigated for corruption,” wrote Comer last month.
“The Committee is investigating then-Vice President Biden’s and the Obama-Biden Administration’s official actions and policies regarding Ukraine. Specifically, the Committee seeks information regarding the State Department’s perception of the Ukrainian Office of the Prosecutor General, at the time headed by Viktor Shokin,” he added.
Comer’s Committee Ramps Up Investigations
Much of the Committee’s focus has been investigating whether the then-Vice President benefitted from his son’s transactions. Bank records obtained by the Committee have revealed a complex web of more than 20 businesses which, according to GOP lawmakers, was designed by the Biden family to conceal transactions from foreign associates.
The family received millions of dollars from oligarchs in Russia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine while the now-80-year-old was in office under the Obama administration. Moreover, the Committee has so far identified more than $20million in payments to the Bidens, including sources from the aforementioned countries along with China and Romania. Such funds were sent to accounts tied to Archer under the Rosemont Seneca name, before issued to Hunter in incremental payments.
Crucially, despite Hunter and Joe’s brother James Biden receiving payments, there has been no conclusive evidence that President Biden himself received any financial gain out of the business dealings.
That’s not deterred the Republican-led Committee from further investigations. In one of his last acts before losing the House speakership, Kevin McCarthy announced the formal launch of an impeachment inquiry, providing Comer and allies with additional powers to investigate the Bidens. So far, these powers have been used to subpoena bank records connected to the family. Within days of launching the formal inquiry, Comer’s Committee discovered more than $250,000 wired to Hunter, addressed to the President’s Delaware home, from Chinese business partners.
Controversial Emails Called Into Question
The latest revelations arise from three FOI requests by America First Legal (AFL) to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) in August 2022. AFL, spearheaded by former Trump advisor Stephen Miller, asked for records in relation to Hunter and James Biden’s business dealings. So large was the scope of the request that NARA initially estimated it would require seven years’ processing through 1,250 pages per month, prompting AFL to file a lawsuit.
On Friday, AFL and NARA issued a joint update into the release of the records. In addition to the 19,335 emails between Biden’s office and Rosemont Seneca, the new documents also show a further 4,243 with son Hunter, 1,751 with brother James, and a further 3,738 emails with the latter’s firm Lion Hall Group.
Among the latest release of documents is an email dated December 4, 2015, where longtime family business associate Eric Schwerin sent quotes to Joe Biden’s then–communications director Kate Bedingfield regarding a possible response to the media probe into Hunter’s role on the board of Burisma.
“VP signed off on this,” responded Bedingfield hours later.
Last month, Comer wrote a letter to NARA requesting “unrestricted special access” to correspondence between the then-Vice President’s office, and Hunter and business associates. It requests unredacted copies included in NARA’s “Records on Hunter Biden, James Biden, and Their Foreign Business Dealings” file.
Regarding the December 4 email, Comer wrote: “The timing of this email traffic is concerning to the Committee. According to Devon Archer (another longtime Biden family business associate), after a Burisma board of directors meeting in Dubai—on the evening of December 4, 2015 (midday in Washington, D.C.)—Hunter Biden ‘called D.C.’ to discuss pressure that Burisma asked him to relieve.”
In a statement on X, the site formerly known as Twitter, the Oversight Committee said: “Presidential Candidate Joe Biden promised there would be an ‘absolute wall’ between his work as an elected official and his family’s ‘business.’ That doesn’t match his track record. New info from the National Archives shows that Biden’s VP Office emailed with his son Hunter, his brother Jim, and both of their ‘businesses’ OVER 29,000 TIMES.”
AFL added that there was “never a wall between the Bidens’ personal lives, business endeavors, and the government.”
Investigations by the White House are ongoing, with the White House adamant of no wrongdoing.
Shay Bottomley is a British journalist based in Canada. He has written for the Western Standard, Maidenhead Advertiser, Slough Express, Windsor Express, Berkshire Live and Southend Echo, and has covered notable events including the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.