One hint that Joe Biden won’t be the presidential candidate this year is that a left-leaning news outlet like POLITICO has just run an article about Hunter Biden and his long history of trading on the Biden name.
The piece is by Jasper Craven, whose work has appeared in such publications as THE NEW YORK TIMES, MOTHER JONES, THE INTERCEPT, THE ATLANTIC and THE NEW REPUBLIC. We’re talking far left.
“Hunter Biden snagged a cushy bank job after law school,” says the headline. “He’s been trading on the Biden name ever since.” Subhead: “When Hunter decided to be in the Biden business.” Actually, the decision seems to have been made for him.
The article details how Hunter’s life changed just as he was graduating from Yale Law School. He was already married with a baby daughter, apparently a happy guy with his whole professional life ahead, and he and wife Kathleen were ready for the next phase of their relationship, planning a move to Chicago, where her family was, and for him to take a couple of well-paying internships and an “attractive” full-time offer from one of those firms. (Note: much of this information comes straight from Kathleen’s book, IF WE BREAK: A MEMOIR OF MARRIAGE, ADDICTION AND HEALING.) But something happened to derail those adventurous early-marriage plans.
One day Hunter went back home to Wilmington to talk with someone “to get career advice,” as Kathleen put it. Another source has said this person was Charles Cawley, CEO of MBNA bank and a close political ally of father Joe Biden. Apparently, this was the proverbial offer Hunter couldn’t refuse; it was, in Kathleen’s words, “a dollar amount greater than anything I’d ever imagined someone our age earning.”
Have you ever read the John Grisham novel or seen the movie THE FIRM? In it, the lead character, played in the film by Tom Cruise, has just graduated from law school and is offered a mind-boggling amount of money, with all sorts of perks, to join a small law firm. In the fictional story, he’s recruited from his graduating class for this unbelievably lucrative job not because his father is a senator but because he’s naive and swayed by the trappings of success. The trappings end up “trapping”...him.
In the real-life story, the Biden story, it happens because his father is a senator.
(Note: the movie “firm” is corrupt, catering to a corrupt mob-based client. That’s certainly not a parallel we’re drawing with MBNA; they had different reasons for bringing Hunter on. We’re just illustrating how an unimaginably huge monetary offer can sway someone right out of school who might have had other plans for his life.)
And just as in the movie this decision caused marital strife, so it did in Hunter’s young household. Kathleen didn’t want to live in Wilmington; she felt as if she didn’t fit. But Hunter took the job at MBNA anyway. “In doing so,” Craven writes, “he settled into a pattern that would last the rest of his life, taking opportunities and putting himself in positions marked by good money and terrible political optics.” It might be said that Hunter became a professional Biden at that point.
The article goes into detail about the close relationship between MBNA and Sen. Biden. “Over the course of his senatorial career,” it says, “MBNA executives showered him with more than $200,000 in campaign donations, the largest amount in his war chest tied to any one company. Sen. Biden was friendly with MBNA officials, including Cawley, and a reliable ally for all their issues.”
“The move to MBNA thrust Hunter into a small, chummy world where it would prove impossible to escape his father’s shadow.”
As long ago as 1998, Byron York investigated these ties and called Joe Biden “the senator from MBNA.” He also referred to Hunter’s “mystery job” within that corporation, where Hunter advanced to the position of senior vice president.
Joe Crouse, a lobbyist for MBNA, told Craven that “nobody was really surprised” when Hunter was brought in. “He was a Biden, and we were in Delaware.”
As far as we know, Hunter’s work at MBNA was totally above-board. But it just shows how things work in the world of politics when you’re the son of a powerful senator. And it primed Hunter for what was to come later, internationally, trading on his father’s name.
In other Hunter Biden news, Jonathan Turley wrote a column detailing a threat he received from the attorney for “sugar brother” Kevin Morris. “The letter warns,” Turley says, “that I could face a defamation action if I do not retract (or if I repeat) my criticism of Morris’ representational relationship with Hunter.”
Needless to say, Turley did not issue a retraction. Instead, he refused to be intimidated and published another column (good for him) repeating his objections to what he calls “Morris’ blurry representational claims.” We’ve asked similar questions: Is Kevin Morris acting as Hunter’s attorney, business partner, friend, film producer, financial institution/source of funds, art buyer? He seems to be whichever is convenient at the moment. When Morris was deposed, he asserted attorney-client privilege an astounding 17 times.
Morris seeks “sweeping privilege claims despite the layers of different relationships, from loaner to donor to lawyer to producer.” But as Turley notes, “when you are ‘everything’ to a client, you may end up with nothing when it comes to confidentiality.”
Mike Miller at REDSTATE wrote about this as well, saying that Turley made Morris “look like a fool.” Turley had pointed out the ethics rule that lawyers “are not supposed to pay the bills of their clients.” Morris, while claiming to be Hunter’s attorney, has “loaned” (ha) him millions.
America First Legal has filed a complaint with the State Bar of California against Morris for this. Great letter...
Good for Turley, and for AFL. As Miller wrote, when Morris and his attorney went after Jonathan Turley, they threatened the wrong guy.