Senate Homeland Security Chair Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.), who has been investigating emails and documents pertaining to Hunter Biden's business deals overseas, asserted that a claim made by a former business associate earlier this week "appears to be authentic."
“All I can say is that all the verification, all the validation we’re doing, we haven’t turned up any discrepancies. Everything appears to be authentic that we’ve looked at so far," Johnson told Fox News on Thursday night when he was questioned about statements made by Tony Bobulinski, a former business associate of Hunter and Jim Biden, who claimed earlier this week that the Biden family could be compromised by China.
Bobulinski, earlier this week, told Tucker Carlson and said at a press conference last week that Hunter Biden and several associates took him in on an energy deal with Chinese firm CEFC China Energy in 2017, which is linked to a Chinese Communist Party-affiliated billionaire. Bobulinski said he met Joe Biden in May of that year and they spent an hour talking about the deal.
During the final debate, Biden also claimed the allegations were part of a Russian disinformation plot and a smear campaign against his family. The Director of National Intelligence, John Ratcliffe, and some GOP members of Congress have disputed the Russian disinformation assertion.
Bobulinski told Sinclair Broadcast Group on Thursday that he was questioned by six FBI agents on Oct. 23 in the presence of counsel for five hours. They have now listed him as a “material witness” regarding Hunter Biden and his associates, he said.
In the Thursday interview, Johnson also suggested that Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian gas company that employed Hunter Biden as a board member while his father Joe Biden was vice president, paid Hunter Biden "for influence."
"Our report didn't answer all the questions. It just raised serious, serious questions that require greater investigation," he said. "I take no joy in uncovering this truth about Joe Biden. He's had so many tragedies in his life ... the American people deserve the truth before they go to the polls [and] it's coming awful late in the process."
Joe Biden has long asserted that his work in Ukraine was part of his official duties and he carried out Obama administration policies and work in the country. During the final debate, he said he has “not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life.”
Biden notably told a Council on Foreign Relations panel in 2018 that he was able to force the ouster of a Ukrainian prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating Burisma Holdings on pain of $1 billion. The former vice president also said he did it in official capacity and said it had nothing to do with his son's business, while simultaneously denying he knew anything about his son's dealings overseas. Bobulinski, however, disputed this claim in his Tucker Carlson interview, saying that he met with Joe Biden several times to discuss business with Hunter.
Biden's campaign has not responded to a request for comment.