Signatories of Hunter Biden laptop letter get plum jobs after pumping disinformation into election
“None of them should ever be hired, work for, or paid by the United States government," Sen. Ron Johnson said.
While the American public was misinformed about Hunter Biden's laptop in a 2020 letter signed by former intelligence officials – who used their job titles to add credibility to their claims – some of them have since landed plum jobs, including working with the federal government.
Just weeks before the 2020 presidential election, 51 ex-high ranking intelligence officials signed a letter insinuating the Hunter Biden laptop was "Russian disinformation" after The New York Post reported on the laptop days earlier. The Post report mentioned how Hunter had abandoned his laptop at a Delaware computer repair shop and had emails regarding his business dealings.
The letter was "triggered" by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, then a Joe Biden campaign adviser, and its organizer, former Acting CIA Director Michael Morell, wanted to create a "talking point" to help Biden win the last presidential debate of 2020 and beat Donald Trump in the election.
Former Attorney General William Barr told conservative radio show host Hugh Hewitt in March 2022 that “given how close the election was,” the letter “probably affected the outcome, or at least there is a very distinct probability of that.”
In October 2020, Twitter locked The Post's account over the revelation of Hunter Biden’s infamous laptop, and on Facebook, stories linking to the Post's story were also blocked by the tech giants. The move came after The Post refused Twitter’s demand that it delete six tweets that linked to laptop-related stories that the Twitter claimed — without any evidence — were based on "hacked information", the Post said.
Major newspapers, mostly left-leaning, refused to report on the laptop, many using the letter as "proof" the laptop was fake. A year and a half after the Post broke the story, the Times says it had "authenticated" the messages it previously deemed suspect.
In September 2022, nearly two years after the news of the laptop broke, a Rasmussen Reports poll found that 63% of American voters believed the story was important, and 44% believed it was “very important.”
On Tuesday, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced the creation of the Homeland Intelligence Experts Group, which includes "private sector experts who will provide their unique perspectives on the federal government’s intelligence enterprise to DHS’s [Intelligence and Analysis] and the Office of the Counterterrorism Coordinator."
The group “will meet four times annually and leverage the expertise of each member to provide input on I&A’s most complex problems and challenges, including terrorism, fentanyl, transborder issues, and emerging technology,” according to DHS.
Three of the group members are former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and former CIA Senior Operations Officer Paul Kolbe. All three were signatories on the Hunter Biden laptop letter.
Brennan is a distinguished fellow at Fordham University School of Law and University of Texas at Austin, Clapper is currently a CNN national security analyst, and Kolbe is a senior fellow and former Director of the Intelligence Project for the Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. Neither Clapper nor CNN have disclosed how much he is paid.
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) told the “Just the News, No Noise” TV show on Wednesday that the 51 signatories of the laptop letter shouldn’t be employed by the federal government again.
“[E]very last one of those individuals should lose their security clearance,” Johnson said. “None of them should ever be hired, work for, or paid by the United States government. And what this indicates is literally how deep and corrupt the deep state truly is. They are so brazen that they have no shame.”
Johnson also mentioned how, along with the ex-intelligence officials, the Bidens are brazen and “have no shame” as “Hunter’s suing the IRS” amid possibly facing future tax charges from special counsel David Weiss.
“Yeah, I wouldn't be doing that if I'm facing tax evasion charges, but that's how brazen all these people are,” Johnson added. “They don't care what the American people think. They are the law, they believe they're above the law. They are quite confident that the mainstream media will never hold them accountable, so they continue in these corrupt actions. And they reward corrupt actions by their buddies.”
Retired General Michael Hayden, former CIA director and former NSA director who signed the laptop letter, is an advisor to NewsGuard, a for-profit enterprise that claims to “counter misinformation” by tracking “all of the top false narratives spreading online.”
Hayden also established the Michael V. Hayden Center for Intelligence, Policy, and International Security at the George Mason University Schar School for Policy and Government.
Morell, former acting director of the CIA, is a distinguished visiting professor at the Michael Hayden Center. He has a podcast with CBS News called “Intelligence Matters” and is a senior counselor at strategic advisory firm Beacon Global Strategies. That company specializes in advising "leading companies on national security issues."
Clapper and Kolbe each donated to Biden's 2020 presidential campaign, according to Federal Election Commission filings previously reviewed by Just the News.
Brennan has a similar name in the FEC database with those listed as donating to Democratic causes but the FEC records lacked enough location or employment data to positively identify the donor.
In March, The New York Post asked the former intelligence officials if they regretted signing the letter. While most didn't respond, some of those who commented stood by the letter, and none of them expressed regret for signing it.
Clapper soft-pedaled the impact of the letter, telling The Washington Post in February that "Politico deliberately distorted" the letter by the former intelligence officials that it had published. "All we were doing was raising a yellow flag that this could be Russian disinformation," he said.
Politico stood by its report, saying, "The article fairly and accurately reported on — and summarized — the intelligence officials' letter."
The Facts Inside Our Reporter's Notebook
- signed a letter
- New York Post reported
- Michael Morell, wanted to create a "talking point"
- William Barr told
- Rasmussen Reports poll
- creation of the Homeland Intelligence Experts Group
- according to DHS
- tax charges from special counsel David Weiss
- advisor to NewsGuard
- distinguished visiting professor
- podcast with CBS News
- senior counselor
- Federal Election Commission filings
- asked the former intelligence officials
- Clapper told The Washington Post