For the Biden family — especially the President — Hunter’s laptop has become “the laptop from hell.” Newly released contents show that the President’s brother James and Hunter together were key in collaboration with numerous individuals and entities to use “available” access to Joe Biden’s influence to initiate and perpetuate business deals.
And it’s no longer credible for anyone to say there was nothing underhanded and almost undoubtedly illegal about what the Biden Family Syndicate was all about.
James Biden took out his iPhone early one morning in September 2017 and tapped a quick message to his nephew Hunter. It was, as usual, filled with typos. It was filled with exclamation points meant to convey his exuberance.
“Hunter, we are cut from the same cloth,” James Biden wrote. “… You are a fine and gentle person. Believe it or not, I know you. It sounds corner, but we both deserve to enjoy the moment. Concentrate on the good in our lives and try to step out of all the bullshit you deal with on a minute-to-minute basis.”
The exchange comes from a hard drive copy that Hunter Biden purportedly dropped off at a repair shop and never retrieved. A copy was provided to The Washington Post, and two forensic analysts authenticated the emails cited in this article.
James and Hunter Biden were in the midst of a lucrative deal with Chinese executives, while Joe Biden was out of public service for the first time in nearly a half-century, having left the vice presidency a few months earlier. Hunter Biden was also wrestling with drug addiction, financial problems, and a relationship with his late brother Beau’s widow that had become public. Amid all that, Hunter Biden turned to his uncle for emotional support, at least as much as to his famous father.
Hunter also relied upon James Biden, who goes by Jim and is known as “Jimmy” within the family, on matters of dollars and cents. Within days of that exchange, Hunter received another email from his uncle urging him to take advantage of a financial opportunity related to Joe Biden. The urgency is apparent, even if the precise subject is not.
“You need to call me now,” James Biden wrote on Oct. 1, 2017. “Just got off the phone with your father…We have the two biggest days of our business life before us!!!!!! We must be smart, or everything goes up in smoke! Please call me. You MUST remain calm. The timing could not be worse. Calm and measured!!!! Paybacks can come later.”
James Biden has, in many ways, always been the protector in the Biden family, the one who made sure the machinery ran while his brother soared; President Biden, as recently as late last year, referred to him as “my brother Jimmy, who fixes everything.” He has been there for the bad times, comforting family members in distress, visiting the bedside of loved ones and getting them into rehab when needed. At his first wedding, he was by his brother’s side, was at the hospital when Beau died and found a neurosurgeon when Joe had a brain aneurysm. He even helped paint Hunter’s law school apartment. When Joe Biden became President, his brother was tasked with redecorating the Oval Office.
Yet from the start of Joe Biden’s political career, James, seven years younger, has also walked up to ethical lines his brother has avoided, leaving a complicated trail of business dealings and angry lawsuits.
In a rare phone interview, James Biden said he tries to keep a low profile, and he used more than a few expletives to describe unwelcome attention from Republicans and the media. “I’m the guy who assists in everything. When it comes to my family, I try to be as supportive as possible,” he said. “But this notion of ‘the fixer,’ or any reference that has a negative connotation, is offensive.”
He added, “The notion I am some underworld figure, and I am a fixer or the cleaner or I’m this or that — I’m a very concerned family member who tries to protect my family in every way I can, in what is a very ethical way.”
James Biden mused aloud during the interview that he should not be speaking to a reporter, then resumed talking. Eventually, his wife, Sara, entered the room and advised him to cut off the conversation. “Talk to a real person who knows me,” James Biden said, then offered, “Guess what? There’s not many who do.”
James Biden has included Hunter in many financial deals, his expressions of undying empathy for his nephew alternating with exciting business pitches. Yet many of those deals have turned sour, as onetime business partners have alleged in court documents that James Biden has said he would bring in business using the Biden name and connections, then failed to deliver — allegations he denies.
The Post spoke to associates of James Biden at his request. They spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive legal matters and declined to provide specifics. Hunter Biden did not respond to several requests for comment sent through his attorney, and the White House declined to comment.
The intricate mesh of relationships — between the President, his son Hunter, and his brother James — illustrates how the President’s relatives have struggled to make a life in his political shadow.
The President and his family are sure to face any number of investigations if Republicans retake at least one chamber of Congress in November’s midterm elections. Republicans have recently drawn more attention to James Biden and Hunter, indicating that they would put him under the spotlight.
James and Hunter Biden are far from the first presidential relatives to face scrutiny. From Billy Carter to Roger Clinton, presidential siblings have caused political problems. At the same time, former President Donald Trump’s family members regularly sought business opportunities related to his presidency and even took positions in his administration.
It is clear that James Biden both soothed his troubled nephew in moments of genuine despair and worked to cultivate business opportunities with him. “My Uncle Jimmy is my best friend in the world,” Hunter said last year during a podcast interview.
The two men share the light banter of close family members, emailing on subjects like the sporting events of Hunter Biden’s children. In the emails, James Biden, at one point, asked Hunter for advice on getting his boat painted at his marina (“They are thieves down in Fla!!!!!”) and at another advised him on attire for an upcoming dinner (“Jeans very casual!!”).
James Biden also frequently encouraged Hunter to take time to relax and to try yoga and meditation. “It’s worked for you in the past,” he wrote on Oct. 4, 2017. “Force yourself. I’m hitting the gym big time. Let’s take some stress off, anyway; we can! I’m with you, Pal.”
A few weeks after that message, James Biden was enthusiastically outlining ways for the two of them to leverage political connections in pursuit of infrastructure projects. They knew officials in California, James reminded Hunter, including Gov. Jerry Brown, so that they could go after rail projects in the state. He added that massive projects were shaping up in Minnesota where they could tap the Democratic delegation for help. In New York, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo would meet with them whenever they were ready.
“We are very driven people,” James Biden exhorted. “We are rifle shot rather than shotgun people.”
“You never have to ask Jimmy.”
Growing up, the Bidens were a tight-knit family, and James Biden’s role of sticking up for others was clear from an early age. Their mother, Joe Biden, wrote in his book Promises to Keep,” “once shipped my brother Jim off with instructions to bloody the nose of a kid picking on smaller kids, and she gave him a dollar when he’d done it.”
When Joe Biden ran for Senate in 1972, it was a family affair. The candidate’s sister, Valerie, was the campaign manager. His youngest brother, Frank, rallied student volunteers. And it was 23-year-old James’s job to raise money. From the beginning, James was willing to tiptoe up to ethical lines in a way that Joe Biden, by his own account, was not.
In the heat of the campaign, James reported to Joe that Bill Holayter, President of the International Association of Machinists, was willing to make a $5,000 donation — but wanted to meet the candidate first. When they sat down, the cigar-smoking Holayter asked Joe Biden if he would support the union on an upcoming issue.
“If you’re asking me how I’m gonna vote on a particular issue, you can take that check and stick it,” Joe Biden told him, according to “Promises to Keep.” Joe Biden stormed off, so James Biden chased his brother to the elevator and asked him to reconsider. According to the book, when Joe still refused to accept the check, James took it himself.
James Biden rejects the idea that he was willing to engage in anything his brother would not. “To get a meeting with that guy, I had to wait in his lobby for probably six months,” he recalled. “Finally, he says, ‘Hey, I want to talk to your brother.’ I said fine; I brought him down.” James Biden said that when his brother stormed out of the room, he persuaded Holayter to apologize.
“The way it was portrayed or suggested that I did something inappropriate or shady or crossed the line, or that I was the one who took the check and he refused?” he said. “Total, absolute bullshit.” He added, “This notion I did something that he wouldn’t do? Give me a break.”
Some of James Biden’s support for his brother was more personal — profoundly so. When Biden’s first wife Neilia and their infant daughter died in a car crash, James identified the bodies and delivered the horrific news to Neilia’s parents, who broke the news to his brother that they were gone.
“Jimmy is among the most generous people in the world, and he would — the expression that we use in the family, ‘If you have to ask, it’s too late — and you never have to ask Jimmy,” their sister Valerie, called Val by the family, said during a recent Washington Post Live event. “He’s always a step ahead of trying to help. He’s fierce. It’s not a pushover by any means. He is genuine. You always know where you stand with Jimmy.”
Over the years and especially now, critics have often asked why the President has tolerated the suspicious behavior of his family members, especially Hunter. That question may never be answered. But it’s clear that the Bidens have bonded through the kind of tragedy few other families can imagine.
After Joe’s wife and baby daughter died, James converted a garage outside Joe’s house into an apartment so he could be a constant presence as Joe tried to raise two young boys while learning the ways of the Senate. In those early days, James often tagged along on congressional trips — including a side jaunt to Europe with his brother, at the advice of Sen. Hubert Humphrey (D-Minn.). “I became a Senate wife for the first year,” James Biden later recalled.
To Hunter and Beau, he was the fun-loving uncle. The one who brought the toys and candy or tossed them into the air at the swimming pool. The one who dragged an artificial tree into their hospital room when recovering from the accident that killed their mother and sister as the family shopped for a Christmas tree.
There’s NO doubt that the Biden Family Syndicate was operating years ago. It fueled itself with the number one asset any political entity must have to survive: access. What better “access” for Hunter and James Biden to sell than that of Hunter’s Dad and James’ brother, Joe Biden: as Vice President for eight years and now as President. No one can honestly contend this process did not exist and that tens of millions of dollars were the outcome of this family syndicate.
What’s so bad about that? After all, it was just a group of family members taking advantage of a privilege that fell in their laps. “No harm, no foul,” right?
“Evil excels when those who take and use it believe that evil is NOT evil, but opportunity.”
We could take an hour or two and detail the dangerous fruit growing from the Biden Family Syndicate operations. Many doors have opened, allowing who knows who access to the current White House and also to Barack Obama’s White House. We may never know how deep and wide this access has been or who everyone the Syndicate has brought to “Vice President Joe Biden” and “President Joe Biden.”
But one thing is certain: ANY access to any VP or President that occurs through channels other than the official process for doing so can only be surreptitious and deadly. At a moment’s notice, we could find the POTUS forced through blackmail regarding any number of issues of importance to whoever has such access.
It’s sad to think, but it is now certain Joe Biden is compromised in his position as President. Hopefully, Special Counsel John Durham’s case, looking into the origins of the Russia Collusion in 2016, will cross paths with Hunter, James, and Joe’s influence-peddling. If so, it would be nice to know if and how Congress and the Department of Justice will address the matter, if at all.
Don’t you join with American citizens in the country that are tired of those in power getting free passes over and over from criminal activities of every kind? American patriots must stand together in demanding justice in this matter — period.
The Biden Family Syndicate must go the way of Don Corleone from The Godfather and be terminated.