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Biden's brother touts proximity to new president in ad for Florida law firm

This is not the first time a Biden family member has used their last name to advance business interests.

Updated: January 29, 2021 - 11:52am

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Frank Biden, brother of President Joe Biden, is making clear his proximity to the new commander-in-chief in an Inauguration Day ad for a Florida legal firm with which he does business.

The Berman Law Group, based in Boca Raton, ran a print ad on Jan. 20 focusing on a lawsuit it has against a group of Florida sugar cane companies.

The ad features a photograph of Frank Biden alongside several quotations connecting the adviser to President Biden.

"The two Biden brothers have long held a commitment to pushing environmental issues to the forefront; the president-elect has vowed to rejoin the Paris Agreement and wants to set ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets, for example," reads the ad, which ran in the Daily Business Review, an outlet based in Florida.

Biden rejects the argument that he's using his brother's name and power to promote his business efforts.

"I have never used my brother to obtain clients for my firm," he wrote in an email to CNBC, which first reported the story. "Our firm has long been involved [with] this lawsuit. Social justice is something I have been involved in for years. I will never be employed by any lobbyist or lobbying firm."

The White House later told CNBC: "It is this White House's policy that the president's name should not be used in connection with any commercial activities to suggest, or in any way that could reasonably be understood to imply, his endorsement or support."

The ad indicates that the law firm turned to Frank as an adviser based on the "Biden reputation for and motivation to engage in philanthropic, social and environmental issues."

"My brother is a model for how to go about doing this work," says Frank in the ad. 

Members of the Biden family were scrutinized during the 2020 campaign for business deals in which they appear to use their the family for profit.

President Biden's son Hunter secure a lucrative deal with the Ukraine natural gas company Burisma Holdings when his father was vice president. And Biden's other brother, James, was also under scrutiny for his connection to the bankrupt hospital business Americore Health.

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