“Mr. Biden, what is your response to the New York Post story about your son, sir?” CBS News reporter Bo Erickson asked the former vice president.
“I know you’d ask it. I have no response, it’s another smear campaign, right up your alley, those are the questions you always ask,” Biden said.
I asked Joe Biden: What is your response to the NYPost story about your son, sir?
He called it a “smear campaign” and then went after me. “I know you’d ask it. I have no response, it’s another smear campaign, right up your alley, those are the questions you always ask.” pic.twitter.com/Eo6VD4TqxD
— Bo Erickson CBS (@BoKnowsNews) October 17, 2020
Biden had not been confronted about the matter publicly since the NY Post story broke early Wednesday. On Thursday night, at a town hall event in Philadelphia spanning and hour-and-a-half, ABC News’s George Stephanopoulos did not once ask Biden about the matter.
The NY Post report said that the outlet had obtained emails showing that Hunter Biden had organized for Joe Biden, then the vice president, to meet a top executive at an Ukrainian energy company called Burisma, where Hunter was working at at the time.
“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,” read the alleged email from Vadym Pozharskyi, an adviser to the board of Burisma, on April 17, 2015.
Pozharskyi also allegedly sent another email earlier in May 2014 asking Hunter about “advice on how you could use your influence” on Burisma’s behalf.
The elder Biden in 2016 admittedly pressured government officials in Ukraine into firing the country’s top prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating Burisma. The leverage was a $1 billion loan guarantee that Ukraine wanted from the United States.
The Biden campaign on Wednesday refuted the NY Post report. In a statement to news outlets, spokesman Andrew Bates said that Biden had “carried out official U.S. policy toward Ukraine and engaged in no wrongdoing,” and that certain “Trump administration officials have attested to these facts under oath.”
Bates also said that the NY Post did not engage in ethical journalism by not asking the Biden campaign about the “critical elements of the story.” Furthermore, the campaign said, “we have reviewed Joe Biden’s official schedules from the time and no meeting, as alleged by the New York Post, ever took place.”
Biden previously said that he had “never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings” in Ukraine or elsewhere.
The emails the NY Post obtained were initially found in a laptop that was sent to an electronics repair shop in 2019. A copy of the hard drive was also sent to former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani. The FBI also allegedly obtained the hard drive.
Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, told The Epoch Times that the drive contains roughly 800 of Hunter Biden’s personal photos, including some which Giuliani alleges show illegal acts. The Epoch Times could not independently verify the claim as Giuliani declined to provide a copy of the files.
Trump has previously repeatedly highlighted Hunter Biden’s business links in China and Ukraine. Hunter’s role in Burisma was put in the spotlight amid the impeachment inquiry of Trump in 2019. Trump, in a July 25, 2019, phone call suggested Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky should investigate the Bidens’ role in the firing of Shokin.
House Republicans are asking the FBI whether it had the contents of the hard drive during the impeachment inquiry.
Jack Phillips and Zachary Stieber contributed to this report.