We recently learned that the huge group of “intel experts” who signed a 2020 letter essentially declaring the Hunter Biden laptop story to be Russian disinformation have all come down with a sudden case of either amnesia or laryngitis. Not even an admission by the venerable New York Times that the story was legit seems to have helped jog their memories or loosen their tongues. The New York Post, who first validated and broke the Hunter Biden laptop story 17 months earlier, has been taking a well-deserved victory lap and they’re not done yet. A reporter for the Post brought a series of related and quite relevant questions to White House spokesperson Jen Psaki this week. They specifically wanted to know what she had learned about potential conflicts of interest for Joe Biden, given his son’s lucrative business dealings with China and Russia. Strangely, despite these stories showing up all across the media spectrum, Psaki didn’t appear to have any idea what the reporter was talking about.
White House press Secretary Jen Psaki on Friday brushed off questions about President Biden’s conflicts of interest in Russia and China — telling The Post that she had “no confirmation” of the findings of a Senate report that found a firm linked to Hunter Biden got $3.5 million from a Russian billionaire who has yet to face US sanctions.
And Psaki once again refused to say if Hunter Biden was actually divested from a Chinese investment fund controlled by state-owned entities.
Psaki spent much of her regular briefing discussing President Biden’s Friday morning video call with Chinese President Xi Jinping regarding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine — but she brushed off The Post’s inquiries about how Biden is handling conflicts of interest in both nations.
The transcript of the Q&A between Psaki and the Post reporter is almost uncomfortable to read. There were multiple questions, none of which the spokeswoman seemed ready to discuss. The one exception was her response to an initial question regarding the Times’ revelation that Hunter Biden is still under criminal investigation for possible tax fraud, money laundering, and foreign lobbying violations. Psaki was asked if Joe Biden still planned to “stay out of” the Justice Department investigation and she simply confirmed that he would and tried to refer any other questions to the Justice Department.
The reporter wasn’t going to let it drop there. Psaki was next asked about the report that Hunter Biden’s company received $3.5 million from Yelena Baturina, a Russian oligarch and the richest woman in Russia. By some curious coincidence, Baturina is one of the few oligarchs not to be hit with any sanctions thus far. So how is Joe Biden “navigating” what clearly appears to be a potential conflict of interest?
All Psaki would say was, “I don’t have any confirmation of the accuracy of that report.” When pressed further on the potential conflict of interest angle, she completely played dumb, asking, “What would be his conflicts of interest?”
At that point, things became even more uncomfortable. Psaki attempted to shut down the New York Post, pointing to another reporter and telling them to “go ahead.” But the other reporter declined, indicating that the Post should continue with the current questions. The reporter seized the opportunity to ask about Hunter Biden’s claim that he had divested himself from his interest in BHR Partners, a Chinese investment fund controlled by Chinese state-owned entities. They asked if she could confirm that claim and pointed out that the press has received virtually no information about the divestment, including who bought out Biden’s son and how much he was paid.
At that point, Psaki appeared to completely throw in the towel. She responded by saying that Hunter Biden is “a private citizen” who doesn’t work for the government and attempted to refer the reporter to Hunter’s representatives. The problem is that the younger Biden’s attorney has still refused to respond to questions about the issue. Also, while it’s true that Hunter Biden is a private citizen, he’s a private citizen with emails indicating that a lot of money has sloshed back and forth over the years between him and his father. And his father is the one dealing with our nation’s financial and trade relationships with China.
For someone who is supposed to be on top of all of the details involving the White House and the President, Jen Psaki certainly appears to have a lot of gaps in her knowledge and/or her memory. And she’s unable to “confirm” information that came straight from a Senate subcommittee and the pages of one of her favorite newspapers. How much more “confirmation” does she really need?