The grifter defense: The Bidens move to embrace influence peddling with a twist


by Jonathan Turley

As the House of Representatives goes into high gear in its impeachment proceedings (and possible contempt resolution against Hunter Biden), the Biden family legal problems continue to mount. In one week, it was revealed that President Biden’s brother James was caught on an FBI audiotape in a corruption investigation, while Ashley Biden, the president’s daughter, is now also facing demands for unpaid taxes.

James Biden is expected to appear before the House for questioning in the coming weeks. The appearance may solidify a new line of defense for the Bidens: that they are harmless grifters.

After years of denying influence peddling with the help of an obligating media, even some Democrats are now admitting that Hunter and his uncles have been selling influence. Biden associates confirmed that Joe Biden was the brand that they were peddling to foreign clients, who paid millions to the family.

The FBI tape is the latest example of how the Bidens would market their name and access. The surveillance occurred in the bribery investigation into Mississippi trial attorney Richard Scruggs. Like many Biden associates, Scruggs would eventually go to prison while the Bidens remained untouched.

Scruggs forked over $100,000 to James Biden when he was seeking to reinforce support for the massive tobacco legislation and Joe Biden was viewed as skeptical on what some viewed as a windfall for trial lawyers.

Scruggs admitted to the Washington Post that “I probably wouldn’t have hired [James Biden] if he wasn’t the senator’s brother.”

Scruggs was just another shady figure whose business association with the Bidens would ultimately end with a prison stint. As soon as the tape came out, so did the new defense.

James Biden took the money but allegedly did nothing to land his brother.

If that sounds familiar, it should. After Hunter Biden’s former business associate Devon Archer admitted that they were selling the “Biden brand,” the Bidens’ defenders immediately insisted that it was merely “illusory.” In other words, these corrupt figures wanted to buy influence and access, but they were just chumps fleeced by the Bidens.

The idea is to get the public to think less of coked up Henry Hill in “Goodfellas” and more of the lovable professor Harold Hill in “The Music Man,” the charming rascal ripping off hayseeds by selling marching bands.

It is a curious defense that we are not corrupt because we just ripped off dupes who were corrupt people.

The problem, of course, is that influence peddling is a form of corruption. Indeed, it is a form of corruption that is so damaging to good government that the United States has pushed global agreements to ban influence peddling in other countries.

The question is whether Joe Biden knew about the influence peddling of his brothers and his son. If so, he actively assisted his family in acquiring millions to influence him on public policy or legislation. His family was effectively marketing time shares in a senator, a vice president and now a president.

Whether or not Biden delivered, the family business corrupted the functions of government by converting offices into types of commodities. That is the case regardless of whether or not they delivered. It is akin to an extortionist taking money without any intent to follow through on threats of disclosure or use of damaging material. Even in today’s willfully blind politics, every voter should be able to agree on two simple facts.

First, influence peddling is corruption long opposed by the government and denounced by both parties.

Second, if the president knew that his son and uncles were using him for influence peddling, Joe Biden is also corrupt.

That is why it comes down to knowledge. Under federal case law, money and gifts going to one’s family is often treated as a benefit for the purposes of corruption or bribery. Indeed, many of the current Democratic members previously voted that money going to family members of a judge was impeachable. I represented that judge in the last judicial impeachment tried on the Senate floor.

It is highly implausible that the president did not know about the influence peddling. There were news articles on the allegations, and the Biden family has been accused of influence peddling for decades. It is a virtual family business.

The greater problem facing the White House is that roughly 70 percent of voters (including 40 percent of Democrats) believes that President Biden acted illegally or unethically, or both. Even Hunter’s friend Archer said that the president’s denials of knowledge were “categorically false.” Other witnesses, such as Tony Bobulinski, have stated under oath that they personally spoke to Joe Biden about these dealings.

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The question is whether Joe Biden knew about the influence peddling of his brothers and his son.

It is impossible to imagine he didn’t. First, we have a truck load of evidence surrounding Burisma and the White House warning Robin Ware/Robert L. Peters/JRB Ware/Pedo Peter/idiot Biden that this was not a good look for the country. But, it defies logic that someone somewhere, hearing about the ongoing influence peddling (we now know the FBI and DoJ was aware, as well as the IRS) didn’t warn him, as if they believed he was innocent himself, that his rotten criminal family was peddling his name and influence all around. We clearly have evidence of the cause and effect of influence peddling in the Burisma case.

If Robin Ware/Robert L. Peters/JRB Ware/Pedo Peter/idiot Biden didn’t know his family was corruptly peddling influence, why does he repeatedly lie about being anywhere near the business deals?

They were just harmless grifters.
And they made millions off their scam.
If you didn’t grift, you should have.
Shame on you for not getting rich this way, too.

Comer & Jordan Investigate Whether President Biden Sought to Obstruct His Son’s Cooperation with the House’s Impeachment Inquiry

Obstruction of justice, that qualifies as a high crime or misdemeanor.

Official White House statement suggests President Biden had advanced knowledge about Hunter Biden’s plan to defy congressional subpoenas

WASHINGTON—House Committee on Oversight and Accountability Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) and Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) are investigating whether President Biden sought to influence or obstruct the Committees’ proceedings by preventing, discouraging, or dissuading his son, Hunter Biden, from complying with the Committees’ subpoenas for a deposition as part of the House of Representatives’ ongoing impeachment inquiry. In a letter to White House Counsel Edward Siskel, Chairmen Comer and Jordan call for all documents and communications sent or received by employees of the Executive Office of the President regarding Hunter Biden’s deposition.

“In light of an official statement from the White House that President Biden was aware in advance that his son, Hunter Biden, would knowingly defy two congressional subpoenas, we are compelled to examine as part of our impeachment inquiry whether the President engaged in a conspiracy to obstruct a proceeding of Congress,” wrote Chairmen Comer and Jordan. “Under the relevant section of the criminal code, it is unlawful to ‘corruptly . . . endeavor[] to influence, obstruct, or impede the due and proper exercise of the power of inquiry under which any investigation or inquiry is being had by . . . any committee of either House or any joint committee of the Congress[.]’ Likewise, any person who ‘aids, abets, counsels, commands, induces or procures’ the commission of a crime is punishable as a principal of the crime.”

It would now appear one could use a dartboard with every field having an impeachable offense. Speaker Johnson could then draw a name from the 435 members, Republican and Democrat who could simply throw one dart and that offense would then be the impeachment article, no vote necessary.