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Joe the Rainmaker? Payments, deals followed key Biden meetings with son’s foreign associates

House impeachment investigators are seeking to uncover what role, if any, Joe Biden played in his son’s foreign business dealings. After repeated denials of ever having met Hunter's business partners, evidence of meetings, key payments and witness testimony tell another story.

Published: February 17, 2024 11:50pm

Updated: March 4, 2024 3:20pm

Evidence including sworn impeachment inquiry testimony, confirmed emails and financial records increasingly show that President Joe Biden’s meetings with his son’s foreign clients were closely followed by payments and agreements that advanced his family’s business deals.

House Republicans on Thursday subpoenaed new financial records belonging to Hunter Biden, his associates, and companies in a growing effort to find evidence that Joe Biden benefited personally from his son’s foreign dealings.

Rep. Greg Steube agreed on the "Just the News, No Noise" television show on Thursday that Joe Biden played a “rainmaker” role in Hunter Biden’s business ventures.

“We’ve known that all along and now we’re getting corroborating witness testimony,” Steube said. “Thankfully, for the subpoenas that have been issued to the financial institutions, we now have financial evidence of the money that was laundered from the Chinese Communist Party or Russian oligarchs, or the Ukrainian government and entities through the Biden family members, his brother, James Biden, and Hunter Biden.”

“And we know that obviously, Joe Biden was the impetus behind all of that,” Steube claimed.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment from Just the News.

Biden's repeated denials

Joe Biden has long denied any involvement in his son’s foreign business dealings, repeatedly and publicly. "I never talked business with anybody,” Biden told Fox News reporter Peter Doocy last August. “I knew you would have a lousy question,” he added. The Washington Post published a clip reel of Biden making similar claims over and over.

In testimony earlier this week, former Hunter Biden business partner Tony Bobulinski challenged the President’s repeated denials, claiming that he met with Joe Biden multiple times and discussed business in those meetings.

In fact, a review of several key deals Hunter Biden organized with his foreign clients show that a meeting with his father, both while he was Vice President and shortly after he left office as well, was often a crucial event in the days or months surrounding key payments or agreements, raising further questions about Joe Biden’s role in his family’s business dealings.

Joe Biden meets with CEFC and $3 million payment follows

According to recent testimony by Hunter Biden business partner Rob Walker, in early 2017, Hunter Biden and his business associates met with a CEFC delegation, including its Chairman Ye Jianming, at a lunch in Washington, D.C. Joe Biden was there. A private citizen at the time, Biden joined his son and the delegation of CEFC officials at the lunch and even spoke to the assembled group.

Shortly after that lunch where Ye Jianming met the former vice president, a CEFC affiliate wired $3 million to Walker’s company, Robinson Walker LLC, the first transfer in the deal between the Chinese energy company and Hunter Biden’s group, Walker told the Oversight Committee.

The early contours of the deal between Hunter and his business partners and CEFC began to take shape in early 2016. In March of that year, Hunter Biden and his partners sent a letter to CEFC Chairman Ye Jianming expressing their anticipation to work together on opportunities in the U.S. and abroad.

Ye Jianming was the Chairman and founder of CEFC China Energy, an energy conglomerate with close ties to the Chinese Communist Party that sought investment deals across the world, from the heart of Europe to the Middle East. CEFC partnered with Hunter Biden and his associates to use the influence of his name to facilitate investment deals abroad and in the United States, Walker testified.

“How do I go to Beijing [...] and not see them for a cup of coffee?” -- Hunter Biden

A similar pattern is found in an earlier venture with a Chinese businessman, Jonathan Li, who joined with Hunter Biden and his associates in forming BHR Partners, a private equity firm that was backed by several Chinese state owned enterprises, including the Bank of China.

In November 2013, Jonathan Li and Hunter Biden—who was partnered with Devon Archer, another business associate who testified in the impeachment inquiry—signed a memorandum of understanding to create a joint venture. The following month, in December 2013, Hunter Biden flew to Beijing aboard Air Force Two with his father during an official government trip.

During the trip to China, Hunter Biden arranged a meeting between Joe Biden and Jonathan Li in the lobby of their hotel. “How do I go to Beijing, halfway around the world, and not see them for a cup of coffee?” Hunter Biden told The New Yorker magazine. Twelve days after the visit, BHR Partners was officially registered in China.

In April 2015, Hunter Biden hosted a dinner at the Cafe Milano in Washington, D.C. which was attended by several of his business partners, including Vadim Pozharskyi, an executive at Burisma Holdings. The younger Biden had joined the board of Burisma about one year earlier, according to a report from The New York Times.

"Thank you" note from Ukranian Burisma executive to Hunter for meeting with Joe Biden

According to sworn testimony from Devon Archer and evidence from Hunter Biden’s infamous abandoned laptop, Joe Biden attended this dinner meeting. Shortly after the meeting, Pozharskyi went as far as sending a "thank you" email to Hunter for the opportunity to meet his father.

Later that year, in December 2015, Vadim Pozharskyi and Mykola Zlochevsky, the owner and founder of Burisma, requested Hunter Biden call his father when pressure against the company by the Ukrainian government was ramping up. This request came amidst an escalating probe by the country’s then-prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin, according to Devon Archer’s testimony.

Days after the requested phone call, Vice President Biden arrived in Kyiv for a visit with the country’s senior leadership and ignoring his own State Department's recommendations, "called an audible" and demanded Shokin’s firing in exchange for a $1 billion loan guarantee from the United States.

Swanky restaurant meeting followed by money for Hunter's new Porsche

Another associate of Hunter Biden attended a 2014 dinner at the very same Cafe Milano—a Kazakhstani oligarch named Kenes Rakishev who partnered with Hunter Biden to secure investment opportunities in the United States between 2012 and 2014. Joe Biden also attended this 2014 dinner, according to the testimony of Devon Archer.

The following month after dining with the vice president, Rakishev wired $142,300 to an entity connected to Hunter Biden. The following day, the same amount was wired to a New Jersey car dealership to pay for a Porsche sports car for Hunter Biden, according to bank records obtained by the Oversight Committee.

[Correction: an earlier version of this article incorrectly attributed a quote to Joe Biden instead Hunter Biden.]