The Trouble with Hunter: President Biden Repeats Claim that his Son Has “Done Nothing Wrong”

In the hilarious 1955 classic, The Trouble with Harry, a group of people in a small New England town struggle over what to do with a body that keeps popping up. In one scene, the character Capt. Albert Wilesa declares “Blessed are they who expect nothing, for they shall not be disappointed.”

President Joe Biden has clearly taken Capt. Wilesa’s words to heart. In an interview with MSNBC, President Biden repeated the same mantra that he has maintained since the 2020 election when his son’s laptop revealed an array of possible criminal acts: Hunter has “done nothing wrong.”

In the interview, Biden declared “My son has done nothing wrong. I trust him. I have faith in him, and it impacts my presidency by making me feel proud of him.”

As with media over the last four years, MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle did not challenge the clearly absurd statement. Instead, she prefaced her question by stressing that there are “no ties to you” in any of his son’s alleged crimes. That is of course ignoring the mounting evidence of influence peddling, repeated references to the involvement of the president, and reports of a whistleblower alleging the President’s involvement in a bribery scheme.

However, it was Ruhle’s shrug to Biden’s claim that was the most glaring part of the low-risk interview. There is, of course, much that Hunter did “wrong.” Let’s just rattle off a few notable examples.

Tax violations: Hunter clearly did not pay his taxes and reportedly relied upon a wealthy friend of the family to pay millions after the Justice Department zeroed in on his financial dealings.

Gun violation: Hunter clearly lied on a form as part of a gun transaction on Oct. 12, 2018, when he answered “no” to the question, “Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?”

FARA violations: While leaks from the Justice Department have omitted any charges for being an unregistered foreign agent, the evidence against Biden appears as strong as past cases brought against others, including Trump’s campaign manager Paul Manafort. The emails show an array of foreign interests, including some with ties to foreign intelligence, paying Biden handsomely for his work and ties to his father. The emails also show Biden reaching out to top Obama Administration officials, including Antony Blinken, as part of this work.

What is also notable is that Biden’s claim is only plausible before any conviction or plea. However, it also suggests that we define what is right or wrong by what is criminal. That is a chilling view for any person, let alone a president, in defining the permissible range of conduct.

Most people would include the following as wrong even without collateral criminal acts (which could also exist).

Prostitution. Hunter Biden documents with astonishing detail his hiring of prostitutes and even may have used joint accounts or cards with his father to pay for such services.

Failure to Pay Child Support. While President Biden has continued to refuse to acknowledge his grandchild, Navy, his son has spent years fighting paternity and child support. President Biden has long campaigned against “deadbeat Dads,” but did not utter a word of concern when his son spent years resisting recognizing or supporting his daughter until a settlement was raised with the help of a court. He is now trying to reduce those payments.

This list does not include drug use in my view. Most of us are sympathetic with people who develop drug addictions. Hunter appears to have been able overcome addictions to alcohol and drugs as did his sister.

However, the biggest “wrong” is the one that Biden does not want to acknowledge because the President was the object of the wrongful conduct.

Influence Peddling. Both the Bidens and the media are eager to tie off the Hunter Biden controversy, even with the necessity of a narrow criminal indictment or plea. The hope is that a plea could be used to declare the matter closed without having to address millions of dollars reportedly generated in one of the most flagrant influence peddling operations in history.

The spin has already begun as pundits and press repeat over and over again that influence peddling is not a crime. It is true that it is not a crime in itself, but it is common for criminal acts to be committed in carrying out or concealing such influence peddling.

Putting aside any collateral crimes, however, influence peddling is still a form of corruption. Hunter Biden, his uncle James, and other Biden family members are implicated in receiving massive payments from foreign “clients” seeking to influence then Vice President Joe Biden.

It may be the favorite form of corruption in Washington, but it is still corrupt. It is still, in the President’s words, “wrong.”

I do not fault the President for defending his son. However, to paraphrase the common statement on sin, you can hate the wrong and love the wrongdoer.


This column also appeared on

128 thoughts on “The Trouble with Hunter: President Biden Repeats Claim that his Son Has “Done Nothing Wrong””

  1. President Biden, speaking at Howard graduation….stoking the flames of division….just like the contemptuous sack of partisan sh*t politician he is and has always been….

    White supremacy is the greatest threat I tell ya! They’re gonna put y’all back in chains!

    What a disgraceful lying POS.

    1. @TiffMoodNukes

      Biden delivering a commencement speech at an HBCU is like inviting David Duke to host the BET Awards

      Biden is the Democrat plantation CEO and racist architect behind the ‘94 mass incarceration crime bill that destroyed black communities.

      Slap in the face. FJB

    2. . Turley and all the Republicans are pathetic. In the face of massive corruption by Trump, et al, his attempt to destroy democracy, what are Republicans focused on? The black sheep of Joe Biden’s siblings. Clearly they are trying to shift attention away from the elephant in the room, Donald Trump. Joe cannot stop his son from doing his business, so the best you got a is a Joe Biden black sheep headache story. Not one stitch of evidence shows that Joe Biden recieved a nickel from his son’s dealings. Yet, Jared scored $2,000,000,000 and a significant management fee from it all from the murderous Mohammed Bin Salman and y’all are crickets on that one. Your fake outrage is noted. The difference is that Jared was Senior WH advisor, and Hunter is a PRIVATE CITIZEN

      1. “Turley and all the Republicans are pathetic. In the face of massive corruption by Trump”
        Please cite actual examples of government corruption by Trump while in office.
        The left and media spent years looking for those and found none.

        ” et al, his attempt to destroy democracy”
        We are not a democracy. Democracies are actually among the worst forms of govenrment.
        Regardless, please cite how it is that you think Trump is destroying whatever it is that you think democracy is ?
        Would that be by flipping from 6% growth and 1.4% inflation – as Biden did ?
        Would that be buy actively supressing the free speech of not just political opponents but half the country that disagrees with him as Biden has ?
        Would that be by reducing family income by 4500/year as biden has – rather that increasing it as Trump did ?
        Would that be by F#$King pup foreign policy starting new wars and risking global nuclear war – a risk that has been incredibly low for 40 years.
        Would that be by driving rising crime rates ? Driving drug addiction and suicide ? Would that be by driving up mental health problems ? As Biden has ?

        “what are Republicans focused on?”
        Prosperity – particularly for the working class.
        Low Crime.
        Limited government.
        individual liberty.
        Global peace.

        “The black sheep of Joe Biden’s siblings.”
        Presumably you mean Hunter. Hunter is a child not a sibling.

        Regardless, Hunter is only and issue not just because of who his father is, but because not only is his father involved, but because Hunter has only avoided jail because of who his father is.

        But the real focus is on Joe – Not Hunter. Hunter is just the head of Marketing for Biden Inc, whoseonly viable produce is the government power weilded by Joe Biden. You are Free to beleive that is not proven – it is not proven beyond a reasonable doubt. But there is plenty of evidence and for most people it has been proven to a more likely than not standard.

        “Clearly they are trying to shift attention away from the elephant in the room, Donald Trump.”
        We had a very clear comparison betwene Trump an Biden with Trump’s recent Townhall.
        You can disagree as a matter of policy with what Trump said. But you can not escape the fact that Trump was competent and cognizant.
        He completely owned a very capable media host who was much younger. He did this without teleprompters, note cards, stage handlers or assists from the host.
        He did so entirely talking about Facts and today. Not trailing off into made up remeniscences of 50 years ago. His sentences were clear crisp, on point,
        not incohentent muttering.

        The left does not want any attention on Trump. It is 2023. We have had 2+ years of the Biden regime.
        We can head to head compare the Trump and Biden presidencies.
        You may be deluded – but most of the country grasps they were LIED to about Trump and Biden.

        2024 will be possibly the first time in US history we have actually gotten to compare the records of two presidents and vote on them head to head.

        And that has much of the left terrified.

        Biden could have been a shoein in 2024. All he had to do was not fail.
        He is arguably the worst president in US history.
        Certainly the worst in the 21st century and probably in the past 100 years.
        Trump is not the great president he claims. But he is certainly the best president in the 21st century.
        Bush, Obama, and Biden are just not stellar examples of us presidents.
        They are all below average. Trump is slightly above average.
        Trump is not great – but he looks great in comparison to Biden.

        And that is your problem.

        “Joe cannot stop his son from doing his business”
        But he can stop involving himself in that business.
        We are well past the Sargent Schultz “I know nothing” stage. Joe Biden was an active participant.
        That violates federal ethics laws – and there has been state department emails saying exactly that available to all of us for 5 years atleast.

        “so the best you got a is a Joe Biden black sheep headache story.”
        No we have Joe Biden IS the black sheep. Addressing Hunter is unaviodable – as Hunter is the head of marketing for Biden llc.
        But Joe is the product and an active participant.

        I do not care about Joe’s defense and blindness to his son’s faults.
        And I have argued with conservatives here that few are going to be upset about Joe’s defense of his son.

        The problem for Joe is not that Hunter is a black sheep. It is that Joe is inextricably part of Hunter’s malfeasance.
        Further if we ignore the drugs, prostitution, and gun charges and stick to the influence pedalling, bribery, and self dealing.
        All of the actually critical conduct involves Joe.

        I would note that the House GOP explicityly warned the DOJ not to indict Hunter solely for traficing, drug. tax, and gun problems.

        There is more than enough evidence to prosecute Hunter for illegal foreign dealings, and money laundering – all of which involve the entire Biden clan.

        I would strongly suggest you review Mueller’s successful prosecution of Manafort. Funds earned by foriegn influnce pedaling are criminal proceeds if FARA was not complied with. That is where Mueller’s money laundering charge against Manafort came from, and while you can pretend that the influence pedaling is limited to Hunter, the money laundering involves the entire clan.

        The left has a major problem – either the Mueller prosecution of Manafort was unconstitutional overreach, or the entire Biden clan is guilty of Money Laundering.

        It does not help the Biden’s that their use of Shell corporations would make Marty Byrde in Ozark proud.

        When you behave like drug dealers – people tend to think of you as criminals.

        “Not one stitch of evidence shows that Joe Biden recieved a nickel from his son’s dealings.”
        If you beleive that – you are not paying attention.

        “Yet, Jared scored $2,000,000,000 and a significant management fee”
        Double False. the 2B is STILL Saudi Money. Jared – the private citizen, and established real estate investor is getting a managment fee If and Only IF he successfully and profitably invests that $2B. That is a clear exchange of value for value between private citizens.
        Despite your attempts at inuendo, we know why Jared is getting paid – he is being paid for protfiably investing someone else’s money.
        Just like your IRA manager gets fees for investing your IRA.

        “from it all from the murderous Mohammed Bin Salman and y’all are crickets on that one.”
        Because there is not there there. This is not a secret deal through shell companies in the Caman islands with hostile foreign powers.
        It is a private investment with a private person, with a track record of successfully investing. It is something that Jared is so proud of he held a press conference to announce it. Jared it not lobbying anyone in Government for the Saudi’s – he is buying and selling real estate.
        There is no FARA involvement, no government involvement, not money laundering.
        It is a simple private deal – one that you still clearly can not understand.
        No one GAVE Jared Kushner $2B, any more than you GAVE the money you put in your IRA to your IRA manager.

        But god forbid you left wing nuts should use the brain cells god gave you.

        “The difference is that Jared was Senior WH advisor”
        WAS – and an unpaid one at that. You seem to be claiming that after the election Kushner was not free to return to the legal business he had spent his life in.

        “Hunter is a PRIVATE CITIZEN” engaged as an unregistered foreign agent lobbying the federal government. And Paul Manafort went to jail for that.

          1. I beleive that FARA is unconstitutional – whether we are talking about Hunter or Manafort.

            But Mueller’s use of FARA has not been found unconstitutional by the courts,
            and the rule of law – not man requires law enforcement to apply the law the same to all.

            Until the courts determine that FARA is unconstitutional – which I doubt they will,
            DOJ/FBI not only Can but MUST follow the prior precedent.

            I separately do NOT believe in prosecutorial discretion as it is typically used today.
            That is a complex issue that always will have grey areas.

            Regardless, the constitution has no provision for prosecutorial discretion.
            Conversly we DO have the 14th amendment which requires the equal application of the law.

            The caselaw regarding DOJ and Manafort absolutely applies to the Biden’s.
            And the rule of law, not man requires that even if ultimate the courts find FARA unconstitutional.

            DOJ/FBI do not have the authority to find FARA unconstitutional.

            Gorsuch said that as a Judge he must occasionally rule against his personal beleifs – because the law and constitution require it.

            The same is true of law enforcement. They must release people they think are guilty – when the law demands.
            They must prosecute people where they beleive the law is wrong, especially when they have done so in the past.

            We lose the rule of law, and end up with chaos and tyrany when we pick and choose when we enforce the law.

  2. SPOT ON, PROF. TURLEY…!!! THANK YOU… Those mini-minds who pretend to know something that would excuse Joe’s Central Role and complete involvement with the Biden Crime Family are simply……………off course and living with blinders on… to say the least…

  3. The problem with Turley’s analysis is that it concentrates too much on the law and not enough on politics. Even combined, all of these charges are “Who FN cares”. FARA Violations, you have to be kidding me. The GOP needs to demonstrate much more than evidence he is guilty of these crimes (which, of course, he is).

    Instead, they need to show beyond a reasonable doubt that it was preferential treatment that allowed him to compile such a voluminous list of charges, that most of the financial transactions were designed to sell political access and favors.

    I also think they must really analyze the transactions with corporations like Alcoa were Hunter Biden offered them information on Ukrainian and other political, business, and financial leaders for a payout. This is obviously information a major international corporation would want to acquire (although they balked at his price). This information had to come from sources that even a giant international conglomerate like Alcoa did not have access to.

    The Democrats would love the case in which is all the GOP had. Solid evidence of tax evasion, a minor gun charge, and a FARA count or two. The taxes have already been paid, apparently. The gun charge and FARA account do not amount to a slap on the wrist combined, and a lame duck Joe Biden (who almost certainly will not be reelected) will pardon Hunter no matter who wins the 2024 election.

  4. I’ve seen a number of articles about this business.
    Granted, Joe Biden is the slimiest person in the country, excepting his son Hunter.
    But honestly, what would you expect a father to say about his only surviving son?
    What’s more, whatever Hunter is guilty of, Joe is certainly equally guilty of.
    Biden lying about it isn’t nearly as shocking as the fact that everyone on the right seems (!) to think that he could conceivably do otherwise.


  5. Prof. Turley.

    As much as I think Joe Biden is a compete disaster as a president. With one exeception I can not fault him for refusing to accept the both criminal and immoral conduct of his son.

    We are each entitled to judge how his willful blindness there reflacts on his ability to be president.

    But the standards for Parents are different.

    And that is why the only critical area in which Joe Biden is faulted is the refusal to acknowledge Hunter’s child and his grand child.
    Willful Blindness to your son’s conduct does NOT extent to denying other members of your family.

    The open warfare between Hunter and the mother of his child is repugnant to all, and is one area in which Joe Biden’s defense of Hunter can not be understood.

    The fundimental issue regarding Joe Biden is NOT his defense of Hunter. It is the extent of his personal involvement in all of Hunter’s shenanigans.

    Many of the criminal issues you note are relevant – because they raise questions about Joe Biden’s judgement.

    Why is Joe a part of all these deals, Why is VP Biden Flying Hunter all over the world to engage with foreign businessmen while Joe engages with dignitaries,
    while Hunter’s personal conduct is likely to attract attention and get all of them in trouble.

    Hunter Biden is the epitomy of priviledge – engaged in reckless conduct with the expectation that he is entitled to a pass.
    That is his problem. Not Joe’s.
    But the fact that Joe fascilitated that and involved himself in it, that is a Joe Biden problem.

    1. “With one exeception I can not fault him for refusing to accept the both criminal and immoral conduct of his son.”

      I can fault him. Joe Biden is corrupt, immoral, and a criminal. Had Joe Biden been moral, he would have taught his son to act morally. Then, in adulthood, he would not be a criminal. Joe Biden’s inner self expresses itself daily through Hunter Biden.

      1. “I can fault him. Joe Biden is corrupt, immoral, and a criminal.”
        True, but not relevant. With rare exceptions – and usually erroneously when we do,
        We expect parents to beleive their children are better than they are.
        We do not hold parents accountable for beleiving their children are good people – even when to everyone else it is obvious they are not.

        “Had Joe Biden been moral, he would have taught his son to act morally. adulthood, he would not be a criminal.”
        That tends to be true – but it is not absolute. My parents were pretty good parents.
        One of my siblings is a narcissist and acts with dubious morality.
        One is a functional paranoid schitzophrenic beleives things that are demonstrably false and acts in ways that would be moral if he were correct, but are immoral because he is not.
        The last sibling is a sociopath – and no interest in what is or is not moral, only what she can get away with.

        Many parents end up with children who become drug addicts. Many otherwise moral people act completely immorally under the influence of drugs. I know of some very good people with good and responsible jobs whose conduct was beyond reproach who were seduced by drugs – usually gradually and eventually would do abslutely anything for the drugs.

        “Joe Biden’s inner self expresses itself daily through Hunter Biden.”
        By most accounts Beau Biden was a decent person.

        Look I generally agree with you – Hunter Biden is what you expect with Joe Biden as a parent. There is indictions that the rest of the clan are simillarly morally compromised.
        Most of us STILL do not Parents accountable for the sins of their adult children.
        And we do not hold them accountable for willful blindness to those sins.

        I will judge joe Biden on his OWN corruption – not Hunters.
        I do not fault Joe for his claims about his son.
        I fault him for lying about himself, and for his own corrupt conduct.
        That is more than enough.

        So far both of my children have grown up to be people I am proud to have raised.
        I would like to take credit for that. And maybe I deserve some of that.
        But alot of that comes from Them. but I am still proud.

        Should time prove me wrong – I am still their for my kids. No matter what they do.

        1. The following was your statement that I commented on. My statement was relevant and on target.

          “As much as I think Joe Biden is a compete disaster as a president. With one exeception I can not fault him for refusing to accept the both criminal and immoral conduct of his son.”

          Joe’s morality shaped the future for himself and his family. He should be condemned for his low moral standards.

          The law of averages do not absolve Joe of his guilt.

          1. I am not arguing averages.
            Most of the time we do not blame parents for the sins of their children.

            My problem with Joe is not that he is blind to Hunter’s faults.
            It is that he is part of them.

            I expect parents to see only the good in their children.

            it is not right. But it is how it is.

            1. “Most of the time we do not blame parents for the sins of their children.”

              Joe is the leader of a criminal enterprise that he brought his child up with, and then into it. He takes blame.

  6. I am anxiously waiting for rich tycoons from around the world to pay me hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars. Where do I get in line? These wealthy people and countries have so much money, they give it away expecting nothing in return. Wow!!! This is great. No strings attached sweetheart deals.

    I don’t care about the thousands of emails in the laptop nor the additional 20K emails in Bevan Cooney’s account nor the correspondence and testimony of Tony Bobulinski nor the falsifying of court documents by the FBI attorney, the scores of visits to the White House by Hunter’s clients during the VP Biden

    Sign me up for the no strings attached free money and goodies.

  7. Dennis – in support of your assertion that Republicans are trying to suppress the votes of college students you cite three examples: eliminating college ID to show residency; no more early voting on campus; and no same day registration. Assuming that all of these claims are vaild, we must wonder how they “suppress” votes.
    Residence ID. The usual ID to establish residence is a driver’s license. The vast majority of students have driver licenses. Where licenses have not been obtained, a state ID can be obtained easily. Why should students be allowed to use a type of ID that the rest of the population cannot use? If student ID can be used, why not an empolyment badge or even a library card?
    Voting on campus. It is not clear what you mean. I assume there are no voting precints on campuses. If there are any, they should be closed down, as they are undeserved privilege. If you refer to boxes for receipt of mail-in ballots, this should also be prevented, as being not only a special privilege, but also because mail-in voting itself should be stopped. Mail-in voting open the way to identity fraud and to invasion of the zone of privacy that every American voter is entitled to.
    Same-day registration. This is another easy path to voter fraud. If there is a close race in, say, New Hampshire, a Dartmouth student from Massachusetts could claim residence in New Hampshire on election day of election to help the local Democratic candidate. Then in the next election, the same student could go back claiming residence in Massachusetts.

  8. You know, I would love to engage in a civil discussion with any of the leftists that come here to make their points of view known; however, I find it increasingly hard to read any of their blather because it uniformly is apologetic of anything involving the left or is constructed in a “what aboutism” fashion to try to bring Trump and/or conservatives into the discussion.

    Ultimately, the Biden cabal will be found out and will pay a price. It will either be during our lifetimes or it will be brought about in the trash heap of time.

    Secondary to this, I wish the good professor and his admin would put down vote capability on the posts.

    1. What about Hunters administrative discharge from the Navy which will turn honorable? Anyone else would have gotten a bad conduct or dishonorable discharge.

  9. Jonathan: The “trouble” in not with Hunter Biden but the attacks on “free speech” by Trump and his MAGA supporters leading up to next year’s presidential elections. As I have said before the franchise is one of the components of free expression–the one time voters have the opportunity to freely express their preferences in the voting booth. But Trump and his allies are trying to thwart the will of the people through vast voter suppression efforts. Case in point:

    Leading the charge is right-wing election denier lawyer Cleta Mitchell. She runs the so-called “Election Integrity Network” at the pro-Trump Conservative Partnership–to which a Trump pac donated $1 million. It should be recalled Mitchell was on the phone call when Trump called Georgia Secy of State Brad Raffensperger to get him to “find 11,780 votes” to throw the election to Trump. Now, Mitchell is going around the country telling MAGA supporters they need to suppress the vote–especially on college campuses. Why the attacks on voting by college students? Because college students turned out in vast numbers in 2020 to vote for Joe Biden and other Democratic candidates–and that made the difference in close elections in 2020. Mitchell doesn’t want this to be repeated next year. So she is pushing GOP controlled states to make it harder for university and college students to exercise the franchise. In some key battleground states the GOP is pushing through new laws to make it harder for students to vote, e.g., no longer accepting university ID cards to prove residency. No more early voting on campus or same day registration and other measures to make it more difficult for students to vote.

    Now I would think you would want to discuss these important “free speech” issues. But I guess I was wrong. You would rather discuss the trials and tribulations of Hunter Biden who won’t even be on the ballot next year!

    1. Same day voter registration is a free speech issue??? Yikes. That stupidity renders all else you said invalid.

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