Influence-peddling by the Bidens documented in photos and emails

Influence-peddling by the Bidens documented in photos and emails
Hunter Biden (Image: ABC News screen grab)

Hunter Biden’s laptop continues to yield evidence that Joe Biden was complicit in his son’s influence peddling, reports the New York Post.

After Hunter Biden left his laptop containing embarrassing files at a Delaware repair shop and then forgot about it, the media falsely implied in the days before the 2020 election that the laptop was not his, despite Hunter’s later admission that the laptop “certainly” could be his. NPR falsely claimed that Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop was “discredited by U.S. intelligence and independent investigations by news organizations,” before correcting that erroneous claim after the election.

As the New York Post notes in a May 31 story, “Hunter Biden’s laptop keeps damning Joe, but most media just ignore it”:

Will this presidential election be the most important in American history?

Hunter Biden’s laptop continues to yield damning information that shows his dad, President Joe Biden, played a significant and knowing role in his son’s sleazy influence-peddling. And while the media efforts to pretend these revelations are nothing but “Russian disinformation” have ceased, The Post’s scoops still get ignored by outlets that would be all over them if they were about the Trump family.

The latest, of course, is the photographic evidence that then-Veep Joe attended an April 16, 2015, dinner with shady Ukrainian, Russian and Kazakh “businessmen” and even posed for photos with the unseemly guests…the likes of corrupt former Moscow mayor Yury Luzhkov (hubby of Russian billionaire Yelena Baturina, who’d paid one of Hunter’s firms $3.5 million the year before), Kazakh oligarch Kenes Rakishev, Karim Massimov, a former prime minister of Kazakhstan, and Vadym Pozharskyi, an executive of the Ukrainian energy company Burisma.corrupAs the Post observes, this isn’t the only proof Joe Biden attended this influence-peddling dinner. Indeed, the Burisma executive emailed Hunter the next day, “Dear Hunter, thank you for inviting me to DC and giving an opportunity to meet your father and spent [sic] some time together. … It’s realty [sic] an honor and pleasure.” This refutes claims that Joe Biden never met with Burisma officials while pushing for the ouster of a prosecutor who was scrutinizing Burisma.

As the Post notes, Burisma was then paying Hunter Biden, who knew little about the energy sector, a massive $83,333 a month to sit on its board. Another email from the laptop reveals that Burisma cut Hunter’s pay in half in March 2017 — right after Joe Biden left office, which shows the payments to Hunter were tied to the office his father held.

As the Post observes, Biden provided value in exchange for the payments to his influence-peddling son: “Face time with a vice president, and the ability to brag about what you talked about over dinner, is worth a lot to global sleazoids. So are smiling photos that imply a relationship and pull at the highest reaches of US government.”

Although many journalists claimed right before the election that the laptop was not Hunter Biden’s, and made the unsupported claim that it was “Russian disinformation,” the Post notes that “the Bidens have never themselves denied the laptop was Hunter’s before he abandoned it, nor denied the accuracy of its contents. The president and his camp have simply offered vague assurances that Joe Biden himself never did anything wrong.”

Right before the election, liberal journalists treated the laptop as not being Biden’s because Biden avoided answering whether the laptop was his. But that evasiveness didn’t prove it wasn’t his. Indeed, it is a basic law of evidence that when someone doesn’t deny something damning, despite being put on the spot, that is strong evidence that it is true, and admissible as such in a subsequent civil case. As a legal web site notes, “If someone fails to deny certain assertions which, if false, would be denied by any reasonable person, such failure indicates that the person has accepted the truth of the allegations.” The fact that the Bidens never denied the laptop was his, even though its embarrassing contents gave them every incentive to point that out if it actually wasn’t his, should have proven to even the most dimwitted reporter that the laptop was, in fact, Hunter Biden’s.

By refusing to address whether the laptop was in fact Hunter’s, in their vague assurances that he did nothing wrong, the Bidens actually telegraphed that the laptop was his. As the Supreme Court once explained, an adverse inference can be drawn against someone from “the production of weak evidence when strong is available.” (See Interstate Circuit v. U.S., 306 U.S. 208, 226 (1939)).

The failure to produce evidence that the laptop was not Hunter’s was additional evidence that it was, in fact, his. As a treatise on evidence notes, the nonproduction of available evidence “permits the inference that its tenor is unfavorable to the party’s cause.” (See Wigmore, Evidence In Trials At Common Law, § 285 (Chadbourn rev. 1979)).

Hans Bader

Hans Bader

Hans Bader practices law in Washington, D.C. After studying economics and history at the University of Virginia and law at Harvard, he practiced civil-rights, international-trade, and constitutional law. He also once worked in the Education Department. Hans writes for and has appeared on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal.” Contact him at


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