Biden Campaign to New York Times: Drop the Biden-Burisma Coverage

Biden Campaign to New York Times: Drop the Biden-Burisma Coverage

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The Biden for President campaign intensified its malign effort to silence questions about the Biden-Burisma scandal yesterday by telling the New York Times it must not publish stories or opinions about the former vice president’s role in firing a prosecutor in Ukraine in March 2016.

Biden’s deputy campaign chief, Kate Bedingfield, accused the Times of spreading falsehoods about the scandal, which involved Biden forcing Ukraine to fire that prosecutor during an investigation of the company that employed and enriched Biden’s son, Hunter.

The two-page attack dealt with the Times’s coverage in general, but the proximate cause was conservative writer Peter Schweizer’s op-ed about Biden-Burisma and similar doings in China.

In “What Hunter Biden Did Was Legal — And That’s the Problem,” Schweizer explained that Biden’s role in pink-slipping the Ukrainian prosecutor is questionable because Biden was, indeed, vice president, and his son did business in Ukraine at the time.

The letter to Times editor Dean Baquet, who will likely vote for Biden if he wins the Democratic nomination, is part of the campaign’s crusade to stop questions about Biden-Burisma. Fox News and Facebook turned down the campaign’s request to spike a Trump campaign ad about it, but CNN, the 24-7 hate-Trump network, complied.

Like Fox and Facebook, the Times refused to spike the Biden-Burisma story.

 Schweizer’s Piece

The author of Secret Empires: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and FriendsSchweizer wrote that a loophole in federal law permits the family members of politicians to enrich themselves by finagling jobs with big foreign companies or governments.

Schweizer explained how two powerful, ruling-class clans class exploited a “glaring loophole” in the law that permits the family members of American politicians, who control foreign policy, to accept lucrative jobs with foreign companies and governments: Joe Biden’s and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s.

When Biden was the point man for the Obama administration on China and Ukraine, Schweizer observed, Hunter Biden “landed deals he was apparently unqualified to score save for one thing: his father.” Wrote Schweizer,

In December 2013, Joe and Hunter Biden flew aboard Air Force Two to China; less than two weeks after the trip, Hunter’s firm, Rosemont Seneca Partners, which he founded with two other businessmen in June 2013, finalized a deal to open a fund, BHR Partners, whose largest shareholder is the government-run Bank of China, even though he had scant background in private equity. (Representatives of the fund claim that the timing of the deal and the Bidens’ trip to China was coincidental.) Thus far, the firm has invested about $2.1 billion, according to its website…

With the Russian invasion of Crimea in 2014, Joe Biden became the point person in Ukraine as well. That same year, Hunter Biden landed a board position with the Ukrainian energy giant Burisma Holdings. Despite having no background in energy or Ukraine, the vice president’s son was paid as much as $50,000 a month, according to financial records. (He left the board in early 2019.)

Why would someone with so little experience be able to command such enormous payments?

Schweizer went on at length about the McConnells’ dealings with China, and concluded that financial disclosure laws “should be expanded to include details concerning all their immediate family members (and not just their spouses, as the law currently states), and any dealings with foreign governments.”

Schweizer did not accuse Hunter Biden or his father of criminal wrongdoing.

The Complaint

Even so, Biden’s handlers cried foul.

After detailing the Times’s sins in reportage on Biden-Burisma, Bedingfield got to Schweizer, a “right-wing polemicist.”

“Despite voluminous work done by the independent press and fact-checkers — including some by the New York Times — to refute the heinous conspiracy theory that Donald Trump attempted to bully Ukraine into propping-up for him, the paper ran an op-ed by none other than Peter Schweizer making more ridiculous claims about the Biden family,” she wrote.

The Times replied correctly: Its coverage of the scandal “has been fair and accurate” and the newspaper will “continue to cover Joe Biden with the same tough and fair standards we applied to every candidate.”

We’ll see about that come the general election, but as for Schweizer’s piece, it appeared in the Opinion section, which “invite[s] intelligent discussion on a range of opinions and ideas,” the Times said. “The op-ed makes an argument that non-partisan government watchdogs would make, arguing in favor of a law that would prohibit self-dealing by those with government connections.”

Whether the Times’s opinion page publishes “intelligent discussion” is open to question, but Schweizer, again, did not accuse the Bidens of wrongdoing.

But such is the nature of Biden-Burisma that any discussion must be stopped.

Courtesy of The New American