Exclusive — Bevan Cooney Moved from Prison Cell after Providing Email Account Exposing Hunter Biden

Bevan Cooney, the former business associate of former Vice President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden who flipped on the Biden family, has been moved from his cell, sources familiar with the matter confirmed to Breitbart News.

On Tuesday, several days after emails Cooney provided to Breitbart News senior contributor Peter Schweizer and journalist Matthew Tyrmand became public, federal agents moved him from his cell to protect him. Tyrmand, who is in contact with members of Cooney’s family, told Breitbart News that Cooney was moved from his cell in a federal prison in Oregon around 11:00 a.m. local time on Tuesday. Tyrmand said that Cooney spoke with family members multiple times on Tuesday, which he said is “much more than usual.”

“Bevan could sense that things had changed with the rise in visibility of his story,” Tyrmand said.

Cooney’s family stressed to Tyrmand they are “extremely concerned given the nervousness gleaned from Bevan’s reaction this morning and they would appreciate a sign from the powers that be that Bevan is in protective custody.” It is unclear where Cooney has been moved to, and in whose custody he currently is.

The federal Bureau of Prisons, which falls under the Department of Justice, has not replied to multiple requests for comment on this front. Breitbart News had sent in a request earlier this week to interview Cooney in prison, but that request was denied, as all media interview requests with federal prisoners are currently being denied due to restrictions because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“They [the Cooney family] believe that alerting the family is the moral thing to do if anyone in government knows anything regarding Bevan’s immediate situation,” Tyrmand told Breitbart News. “They are hopeful he is fine and permanently out of the Oregon facility in which he had been detained for over a year. They know he has been highly motivated in bringing transparency to all of the things that he was exposing by sharing his emails directly with me and Peter [Schweizer]. Given that he was supposed to be released in the coming weeks, although that had been recently pushed back without explanation, his motivation lay purely in seeing justice delivered and warning America about what he had had a front row seat to witness.”

Cooney provided Schweizer and Tyrmand with written authorization to access his Gmail account, and to publish all newsworthy information from his trove of 26,000 emails. Some of them are personal and unrelated to the Biden corruption, but many of them—including ones already published last week and this week on Breitbart News and elsewhere—demonstrate a culture of corruption surrounding the Biden family.

The first story published on Breitbart News last week, by Schweizer and author Seamus Bruner, detailed how Hunter Biden and his associates secured high-level White House meetings for Chinese Communist Party-connected elites visiting Washington from China. That included, per those Chinese elites, a secret unreported meeting with then-Vice President Joe Biden himself. Other emails that surfaced on One News Network showed a deeper relationship between the Bidens and the ex-wife of the former Moscow mayor Elena Baturina. More emails surfaced Monday in another Breitbart News report showing how Hunter Biden’s business associate viewed his relationship with his father, Joe Biden—a “direct administration pipeline”—as a form of “currency” to trade on and make more money. More stories are in the works.

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FBI, DOJ Concur: Hunter Biden Laptop, Emails NOT ‘Russian Disinformation’

The FBI and Justice Department concur with Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe that Hunter Biden’s laptop and emails are not part of a Russian disinformation campaign, a federal law enforcement official told Breitbart News on Tuesday.

In addition, the FBI has possession of the laptop in question, the official confirmed.

The FBI and DOJ’s concurrence with Ratcliffe was first reported by Fox News’ Jake Gibson.

The concurrence follows Ratcliffe’s statements on Sunday that the intelligence community does not believe the laptop and emails are part of a Russian disinformation campaign despite the claims of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA).

Ratcliffe said on Fox Business Network’s Mornings with Maria Sunday:

It is funny that some of the people that complain the most about intelligence being politicized are the ones politicizing intelligence. And, unfortunately, in this case, it is Adam Schiff, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, who, as you pointed out, said on Friday the intelligence community believes that Hunter Biden’s laptop and the emails on it are part of some Russian disinformation campaign.

Let me be clear: The intelligence community doesn’t believe that because there is no intelligence that supports that. We have shared no intelligence with chairman Adam Schiff or any other member of Congress that Hunter Biden’s laptop is part of some Russian disinformation campaign. It’s simply not true.

A senior intelligence official told Breitbart News: “Ratcliffe was right. Schiff was wrong. In other words, it was a typical Tuesday.”

Follow Breitbart News’s Kristina Wong on Twitter or on Facebook.

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Hunter Biden Was on Payroll of Credit Card Company that Benefited from 2005 Bill Pushed by Dad

Hunter Biden got a five-year gig starting in 2001 worth at least half a million dollars with credit card company MBNA Corporation when his-then U.S. senator father, Joe, was pushing for passage of bankruptcy legislation that ended up benefiting his son’s employer.

After it became law in 2005, the year that Hunter’s work for MBNA ended, the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act made it difficult for Americans to get rid of credit card and student aid debt when declaring bankruptcy.

The bill pushed by now Democrat presidential nominee Biden ultimately helped the MBNA Corporation, one of the largest members of the credit card industry at the time, and reportedly helped fuel the student debt problem. It made private student loans one of the ten debts that cannot be forgiven during bankruptcy.

Recalling the arrangement between then-Sen. Joe Biden’s (D-DE) son and MBNA, the largest employer in Deleware when the bill became law, the New York Times suggested in 2008 that Hunter’s five-year (2001-2005) consulting job with the corporation created a potential conflict of interest for his father. Still, aides to then-Sen. Barack Obama’s (D-IL) presidential campaign in 2008 defended the Delaware-based MBNA’s $100,000 a year retainer paid to Hunter, who was 31 when he got the job, the newspaper added.

The aides did admit it was “one of the most sensitive issues they examined while vetting the [Delaware] senator for a spot on the ticket,” the Times reported in its 2008 article, adding:

Mr. Biden’s son, Hunter, received consulting fees from the MBNA Corporation from 2001 to 2005 for work on online banking issues. Aides to Mr. Obama … would not say how much the younger Mr. Biden, who works as both a lawyer and lobbyist in Washington, had received, though a company official had once described him as having a $100,000 a year retainer. But Obama aides said he had never lobbied for MBNA and that there was nothing improper about the payments.

Joe reportedly denied any wrongdoing linked to his son’s business dealings with MBNA, the Times pointed out.

Citing the Obama campaign aides, the newspaper reported in 2008:

Senator Biden’s goal was always to strike a workable compromise between the competing interests on the bankruptcy bill, and that he was not influenced by his son’s work for MBNA or the campaign donations.

Hunter’s work for MBNA while his father was writing and promoting the bankruptcy bill in the early 2000s did not become public until the law passed in 2005, Breitbart News recalled.

As the Democrat senator for Illinois, former President Barack Obama opposed the bankruptcy changes and attacked the now-late Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who became the Republican nominee, for supporting the bill pushed by his own VP pick, Biden.

“Consumer advocates and other Democratic allies remain sharply critical of Mr. Biden’s actions, saying in recent days that they could hamper the campaign’s efforts to attack the Republicans over their handling of the nation’s credit crisis,” the Times noted in 2008.

Hunter’s business dealings, particularly overseas, have come back to haunt Democrat presidential nominee Biden more than once.

Alleged bombshell emails recently obtained by the New York Post indicate the senior Biden may have lied about never speaking to Hunter about his overseas business dealings.

Reportedly, Hunter briefly worked for MBNA in 1996, soon after he graduated from Yale Law School around the time he was 26. He was promoted to senior vice president by early 1998, but that year Hunter left to go work for at the U.S. Commerce Department. MBNA rehired him as a consultant in 2001.

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Trump Confirms More Federal Judges in First Term than Any President in 40 Years

President Donald Trump often boasts of his accomplishments in nominating federal judges, and for good reason: at the close of his first term, he will have confirmed more judges to the federal judiciary in one term than any recent U.S. president.

As of October 5, according to the Heritage Foundation, Trump has confirmed 218 judges to Article III courts — that is, the “Supreme Court of the United States, the U.S. courts of appeals, the U.S. district courts and the U.S. Court of International Trade.”

On October 26, that number will rise to 219 with the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.

No president in the past four decades has appointed more judges in a first term. The only one who appointed more was Jimmy Carter, who appointed 248 — but he had the advantage of an expanded federal judiciary.

Under Carter, Congress added 152 new judgeships — nearly one-third of the previous total — and Carter filled them quickly. (Democrats want to expand and “pack” the Supreme Court if Joe Biden wins the 2020 election — not because of a backlog in the courts, which Carter faced, but for ideological reasons.)

Trump has also appointed 53 appellate judges, leaving no vacancies on that level.

Currently, Trump has appointed more than one-fourth of active federal judges. That is a large proportion — but Barack Obama’s appointees still account for nearly 40% of the federal bench, according to the Pew Research Center.

That means Trump will need a second term if he is to establish a solid “constitutional conservative” foundation for the federal judiciary.

There are three things that make Trump’s judicial appointments special. The first is the timing.

Trump won the 2016 election as Senate Republicans were blocking the confirmation of Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. Had Trump lost, the Court would have had a liberal majority — perhaps for decades.

By filling the empty seat vacated by the passing of Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016, Trump preserved a nominal conservative majority. He will expand it with Barrett’s confirmation.

Second, Trump has appointed an unusually large number of appellate judges. These are among the most powerful judges in the system, and they form the primary pool of candidates for appointment to the Supreme Court. Trump has created a deep bench from which Republican presidents can draw in the future (including himself, if he wins a second term in office).

Third, President Trump’s judicial appointees have been vetted by conservative legal authorities, including the Federalist Society, which promotes the originalist school of constitutional interpretation. Thus, Trump’s appointees are considered more reliably conservative than the nominees of a typical Republican president.

The gains Trump has made could quickly be reversed if Biden wins — not least because his party intends to expand the Supreme Court for the first time in 150 years.

In fact, despite the rapid pace of Trump’s appointments, new vacancies keep opening up on the federal bench. Currently, there are 64 vacancies on the federal bench — over 7% of the total seats. 40 nominations are still pending in the Senate.

A New York Times poll released last week revealed that 58% of likely voters believed the Supreme Court should not be expanded. A majority (57%) of Democrats agreed with the idea of packing the Court; 89% of Republicans opposed it.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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Twitter Is Nuking Retweets Until After The Election

Twitter is temporarily changing how users can retweet during the final stretch of the election, a move which the company says will discourage the spread of false information. The website changes announced on Oct. 9 are being implemented less than a week after the platform began suppressing blockbuster reporting from the New York Post publishing compromising information of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

Starting Tuesday, users who go to retweet will instead by taken to the “Quote Tweet” box prompting users to comment on the content being re-posted on their own feeds.

“Though this adds some extra friction for those who simply want to Retweet, we hope it will encourage everyone to not only consider why they are amplifying a Tweet, but also increase the likelihood that people add their own thoughts, reactions and perspectives to the conversation,” the company explained.

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Users can still retweet if they simply post re-publish the post without typing any additional comments where prompted.

Twitter says the new change will remain in place until at least the end of election week in November.

Meanwhile, the Twitter account for the New York Post is still locked six days after breaking major news that expanded the public scope of former Vice President Joe Biden’s growing web of conflicts while serving at the upper echelons of government.

According to emails published by the Post obtained from a laptop found at a Delaware computer repair shop, Biden repeatedly lied about never having discussed his son Hunter’s overseas business ventures with either Hunter, “or with anyone else.” Correspondence shows however, that Hunter actually introduced his vice president father to a senior advisor to the Ukrainian energy company showering Hunter Biden with upwards of $50,000 a month in excess compensation.

Subsequent reporting from the Post, and confirmed by Fox News, showed Chinese businessmen with deep ties to the Chinese Communist Party were preparing to offer Hunter Biden $10 million a year for “introductions alone,” 10 percent of which would be funneled to Joe Biden.

While Twitter joined Facebook in weaponizing their platform monopoly power over the 21st century digital public square to suppress the Post’s bombshell reporting and of others, Democrats have continued to spread misinformation freely on Twitter.

A new study from the Media Research Center out Monday showed Twitter and Facebook censored President Donald Trump and the president’s affiliated campaign accounts at least 65 times in the last two years, while leaving Biden untouched.

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Exclusive: Biden Defector’s Emails Reveal Hunter’s Associates Viewed Direct ‘Pipeline’ to Administration as ‘Currency’

Hunter Biden’s business associates spoke candidly in emails about Hunter Biden’s role in the business, particularly as it related to foreign ventures, apparently viewing the Biden name as a form of “currency,” and bragging that they had a “direct…pipeline” to the Obama-Biden Administration.

In another email, Hunter Biden’s associates touted Hunter’s access to the White House and contrasted his willingness to “take on risk” with that of Chris Heinz—then-Secretary of State John Kerry’s stepson and a close friend of Biden and Archer—who was uncomfortable with some of their potential partnerships.

In October 2013, Hunter Biden’s associates (including Devon Archer) discussed which one of their corporate vehicles would be appropriate for a new deal they were working on. Archer noted their need to use a “Rosemont Seneca SPV” (also known as a special purpose vehicle) because Rosemont Capital was too close to the Heinz family and because using an SPV could “bring Hunter into the mix.” Archer explained his desire “to leverage Hunter more” in a way that didn’t involve Heinz, who Archer called “much more risk averse.”

Hunter Biden Devon Archer “Risk Averse” by Breitbart News on Scribd

Another benefit of the Rosemont Seneca SPV was, per an October 5 email from Hunter Biden and Devon Archer’s business associate Bevan Cooney to Archer, it “would be good to put some honey in Hunter’s pocket.” That same day Archer responded: “Agreed. I also have more autonomy with that company as I own it with Hunter and he’s willing to take on risk… Hunter will work if we need him too [sic] as well.”

Five days later, Biden’s business associate Jason Galanis confirmed to Archer that he had changed the corporate references in the proposal to include a Hunter Biden-controlled firm. Archer replied, clearly pleased. “Perfect. Let’s just keep to that. We get the Biden lift and stay out of Heinz panties.” Archer had noted he would use Rosemont Seneca Partners instead of Rosemont Capital, in which Heinz held a stake. Hunter Biden and Devon Archer’s Rosemont Seneca Partners would play a pivotal role in their future deals.

For example, in December 2013, Rosemont Seneca Partners finalized a deal with the Chinese government-backed investment vehicle, Bohai Harvest, to form Bohai Harvest RST, a new firm in which Hunter Biden would maintain a 10% equity stake and whose funds would grow to at least $1.5 billion.

Soon after that deal (and after Biden and Archer joined the board of Ukraine’s Burisma Holdings), Heinz made moves to sever his formal business ties with Archer and Biden in May 2014. Just hours after Burisma’s announcement that Biden and Archer had joined the board, Heinz emailed top aides for his step-father and then-Secretary of State John Kerry, alerting them to the potentially compromising arrangement. “Apparently Devon and Hunter both joined the board of Burisma and a press release went out today,” Heinz said. “I can’t speak why they decided to, but there was no investment by our firm in their company.”

But Heinz’s concerns apparently did not deter Biden and his associates from continuing to leverage the Biden family name to pursue questionable business arrangements.

In an email on November 4, 2014, Biden’s business associate Jason Galanis discussed a draft pitch that he was preparing for possible investors. Galanis explained that the presentation would cover boilerplate issues like investor protections. But Galanis also sought to emphasize their connections to the White House, specifically Vice President Joe Biden: “I wanted to focus on the ‘other currency’ we are bringing to the table…direct administration pipeline.” Galanis also mentioned dropping Joe Biden’s connections in their pitch when dealing with union pension funds. Galanis wrote, “maybe we should also remind of HB’s dad’s union relationships to justify the ask??”

In a March 2015 draft investor pitch, Biden’s associates wrote about the need to “leverage Hunter Biden Taft Hartley network.” Taft Hartley is the law governing union pension funds, and Joe Biden has a long-established history of close relationships with union bosses, which Hunter Biden and Joe’s brother James Biden have reportedly sought to capitalize on in the past. The presentation noted that the team “led by Archer and Biden” would create “unprecedented opportunity for a firm at our scale,” and referenced tapping finances from Chinese officials. In December 2013, as has been widely reported, Biden and Archer secured a $1 billion private equity deal financed by the Chinese government. Biden and his associates wanted to go back for even more Chinese money.

In the March 2015 draft investor pitch, Biden’s associates outlined the plan to leverage family clout for more foreign cash. In a section outlining where investments would come from, Biden’s associates described capital flowing from “China>USA” and “Former CCP [Chinese Communist Party]>USA.” And the presentation also proposed more cross-border business deals involving “China SOE [State Owned Enterprises]” and “Former CCP Energy.”

The above quotes are taken directly from a trove of 26,000 emails and attachments from Hunter Biden and Devon Archer’s business associate Bevan Cooney. These emails—provided to Schweizer from Cooney via journalist Matthew Tyrmand—are completely separate from the emails released by the New York Post (purportedly derived from a backup of Hunter Biden’s laptop hard drive).

Cooney is currently serving time in federal prison for his role in the tribal bond scheme that also resulted in the conviction of Devon Archer on conspiracy and securities fraud charges. Archer currently awaits sentencing for that conviction.

Peter Schweizer is the author of Profiles in Corruption: Abuse of Power by America’s Progressive Elite. Seamus Bruner is the author of Fallout: Nuclear Bribes, Russian Spies, and the Washington Lies that Enriched the Clinton and Biden Dynasties.

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PHOTO: Joe Biden Meets Hunter Biden’s Business Associate from Kazakhstan

A photograph has emerged showing former Vice President Joe Biden posing with oligarch Kenes Rakishev of Kazakhstan, who once reportedly explored business with Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.

The photo (above), first published last year at an anti-corruption website called the Kazhakhstani Initiative on Asset Recovery (KIAR), purports to show Hunter Biden and Joe Biden, together with Kazakhstan’s former prime minister, Karim Massimov, at far right.

At far left, the photo shows Kenes Rakishev, described as “a relative and junior partner of [oligarch] Timur Kulibayev.”

Rakishev’s personal website identifies him as an “international businessman, investor and entrepreneur.” It adds that he is “regarded as one of the most influential businessmen in Kazakhstan,” with “business interests spanning technology, oil & gas, finance, shipbuilding, and metals & mining industries.”

Rakishev and Hunter Biden once reportedly explored business opportunities together. The UK Daily Mail reported Oct. 16:

The Mail can reveal that between 2012 and 2014, Hunter worked as a sort of go-between for Kenes Rakishev, a self-styled ‘international businessman, investor and entrepreneur’ with close family connections to the kleptocratic regime of his homeland’s despotic former president Nursultan Nazarbayev.

Emails passed to this newspaper via anti-corruption campaigners from the Central Asian country reveal that Biden Jr held extensive meetings with Rakishev, who was looking to invest a portion of his personal fortune in New York and Washington DC. He also travelled to the Kazakh capital of Astana to hold business discussions.

Hunter Biden then attempted to persuade Rakishev to buy into a Nevadan mining company, brokering a series of meetings with the firm, before convincing him to invest a cool million dollars with Alexandra Forbes Kerry, the film-maker daughter of Democrat Senator and former Presidential candidate John Kerry.

The Daily Mail also reported that Hunter Biden and Rakishev became friends, and that Hunter Biden traveled to Astana (now Nur-Sultan), the capital of Kazakhstan. The two also “dined together at luxury restaurants in New York and Washington DC,” the Daily Mail noted.

Rakishev was recently named in a U.S. Senate report into Hunter Biden’s foreign business activities, which noted that the oligarch gave $142,300 to Devon Archer, Hunter Biden’s business partner, ostensibly for a car:

Archer received $142,300 from Kenges Rakishev of Kazakhstan, purportedly for a car, the same day [in 2014] Vice President Joe Biden appeared with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arsemy Yasenyuk and addressed Ukrainian legislators in Kyiv regarding Russia’s actions in Crimea.

Breitbart contributor Peter Schweizer reported in his 2019 book, Secret Empires: How the American Political Class Hides Corruption and Enriches Family and Friends, that the Morgan Stanley account into which the “car” funds were paid was “controlled by Archer and received large sums of money from foreign entities.”

According to court documents cited by Schweizer, that account received funds from the Ukrainian energy company Burisma; from the Chinese company Bohai Harvest RST (BHR); and from a company controlled by Rakishev, Novatus Holdings.

Investigative journalist Matthew Tyrmand provided Breitbart News with an email from early 2014 in which Archer indicated that he would be hosting Kazakhstan’s “Secretary of State” in Washington, DC.

The email came via Tyrmand from Bevan Cooney, a former business partner of Hunter Biden and Devon Archer, who is currently serving time in federal prison for a 2016 conviction in a bond fraud scheme.

As Breitbart News reported last week: “Cooney … believes he was the ‘fall guy’ for the fraud scheme and that Archer and Hunter Biden had avoided responsibility.” Archer’s conviction had been vacated, but was recently reinstated, and he is currently awaiting sentencing.

The photograph of the Bidens with Rakishev and Massimov appears to have been taken at Café Milano in Washington, D.C. The iconic restaurant’s logo appears on the drapes in the background (backwards in the photo). The date of the photograph is unknown.

Joe Biden is known to frequent the restaurant:

Café Milano was also the target of a bizarre foiled Iranian terror plot aimed at the Saudi ambassador, who apparently also ate there often.

The Washingtonian reported in 2013: “Vice President Joe Biden and his wife are regulars … Cafe Milano has the distinction in Washington of handling high-profile visits with aplomb. On any given night, there might be some dignitary with security in the room.”

Joe Biden has previously declared: “I have never discussed, with my son or my brother or with anyone else, anything having to do with their businesses. Period.”

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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Joe Biden’s Boosters Financed His Prodigal Son’s Entire Career

Hunter Biden profited from his father’s political connections long before he struck questionable deals in countries where Joe Biden was undertaking diplomatic missions as vice president. In fact, virtually all the jobs listed on his resume going back to his first position out of college, which paid a six-figure salary, came courtesy of the former six-term senator’s donors, lobbyists, and allies, a RealClearInvestigations examination has found.

One document reviewed by RCI reveals that a Biden associate admitted “finding employment” for Hunter Biden specifically as a special favor to his father, then a Senate leader running for president. He secured a $1.2 million gig on Wall Street for his young son, even though it was understood he had no experience in high finance. Many of his generous patrons, in turn, ended up with legislation and policies favorable to their businesses or investments, an RCI review of lobbying records and legislative actions taken by the elder Biden confirms.

That the 50-year-old Hunter has been trading on his Democratic father’s political influence his entire adult life raises legal questions about possible influence-peddling, government watchdogs and former federal investigators say. In addition, the more than two-decades-long pattern of nepotism casts fresh doubt on Joe Biden’s recent statements that he “never discussed” business with his son, and that his activities posed “no conflicts of interest.”

No fewer than three committees in the Republican-controlled Senate have opened probes into potential Biden family conflicts. Investigators are also poring over Treasury Department records that have flagged suspicious activities involving Hunter’s banking transactions and business deals that may be connected to his father’s political influence.

U.S. ethics rules require all government officials to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest in taking official actions. The Bidens have denied any wrongdoing.

While most of the attention on Hunter has focused on his dealings in Ukraine and China when his father was in the White House, he also cashed in on cushy jobs and sweetheart deals throughout his dad’s long Senate career, records reveal.

“Hunter Biden’s Ukraine-China connections are just one element of the Biden corruption story,” said Tom Fitton, president of the Washington-based watchdog group Judicial Watch, who contends Biden used both the Office of the Vice President and the Senate to advance his son’s personal interests.

In each case, Hunter Biden appeared under-qualified for the positions he obtained. All the while, he was a chronic abuser of alcohol and drugs, including crack cocaine, and has cycled in and out of no fewer than six drug-rehab treatment programs, according to published reports. He’s also been the subject of at least two drug-related investigations by police, one in 1988 and another in 2016, according to federal records and reports. A third drug investigation resulted in his discharge from the U.S. Navy Reserve in 2014.

This comprehensive account of Hunter Biden’s “unique career trajectory,” as one former family friend gently put it, was pieced together through interviews with more than a dozen people, several of whom insisted on anonymity to describe private conversations, and after an in-depth examination of public records, including Securities and Exchange Commission filings, court papers, campaign filings, federal lobbying disclosures, and congressional documents.

Hunter Biden’s resume begins 24 years ago. Here is a rundown of the plum positions he has managed to land since 1996, thanks to his politically connected father and his boosters:

1996-1998: MBNA Corp.

Fresh out of college, credit-card giant MBNA put him on its payroll as “senior vice president” earning more than $100,000 a year, plus an undisclosed signing bonus. Delaware-based MBNA at the time was Biden’s largest donor and lobbying the Delaware senator for bankruptcy reforms that would make it harder for consumers to declare bankruptcy and write off credit-card debt.

Besides a job for Hunter, bank executives and employees gave generously to Joe Biden’s campaigns – $214,000 total, federal records show – and one top executive even bought Biden’s Wilmington, Delaware, home for more than $200,000 above the market value, real estate records show. The exec paid top dollar – $1.2 million – for the old house even though it lacked central air conditioning. MBNA also flew Biden and his wife to events and covered their travel costs, disclosure forms show.

Sen. Biden eventually came through for MBNA by sponsoring and whipping votes in the Senate to pass the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention Act.

When NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw asked Biden during the 2008 presidential campaign whether it was wrong “for someone like you in the middle of all this to have your son collecting money from this big credit-card company while you were on the (Senate) floor protecting its interests,” Biden gave an answer he would repeat many times in the future: “Absolutely not,” he snapped, arguing it was completely appropriate and that Hunter deserved the position and generous salary because he graduated from Yale.

1998-2001: Commerce Department

Hunter also capitalized on the family name in 1998 when he joined President Clinton’s agency. In spite of having no experience in the dot-com industry, he was appointed “executive director of e-commerce policy coordination,” pulling down another six-figure salary plus bonuses.

He landed the job after his father’s longtime campaign manager and lawyer William Oldaker called then-Commerce Secretary William Daley, who’d also worked on Biden’s campaigns, and put in a good word for his son, according to public records.

2001-2009: Oldaker, Biden & Belair

After Republican President George W. Bush took over the Commerce Department, Hunter left the government and joined Oldaker to open a lobbying shop in Washington, just blocks from Congress, where he gained access to exclusive business and political deals.

Federal disclosure forms show Hunter Biden and his firm billed millions of dollars while lobbying on behalf of a host of hospitals and private colleges and universities, among other clients. In a 2006 disclosure statement submitted to the Senate, Hunter said his clients were “seeking federal appropriations dollars.”

Hunter won the contract to represent St. Joseph’s University from an old Biden family friend who worked in government relations at the university and proposed he solicit earmarks for one of its programs in Philadelphia. The friend, Robert Skomorucha, remarked in a press interview that Hunter had “a very strong last name that really paid off in terms of our lobbying efforts.”

These clients, like MBNA, also favored bankruptcy reforms to make it harder for patients and students to discharge debt in bankruptcy filings. At the same time Hunter was operating as a Beltway lobbyist, he was receiving “consulting payments” from his old employer MBNA, which was still courting his father over the bankruptcy reforms.

In 2007, Hunter also dined with a private prison lobbyist who had business before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee Joe Biden chaired, according to published reports. Senate rules bar members or their staff from having contact with family members who are lobbyists seeking to influence legislation.

Hunter’s lawyer-lobbyist firm was embroiled in a conflict-of-interest controversy in 2006 when it was criticized for representing a lobbyist under investigation by the House ethics committee. The lobbyist was still taking payments from his old K Street firm while working as a top aide on the House Appropriations Committee. Hunter at the time was lobbying that same committee for earmarks for his clients.

William Oldaker did not just make Hunter a rich lobbyist. Oldaker also secured a $1 million loan for him through a bank he co-founded, WashingtonFirst, that Hunter sought for an investment scheme, which later went sour.

Joe Biden deposited hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign and political action committee donations at WashingtonFirst, while funneling hundreds of thousands in campaign and PAC expenditures to Oldaker, Biden & Belair. Joe Biden’s payments to Hunter’s lobbying firm, including more than $143,000 in 2007 alone, were listed as “legal services” in Federal Election Commission filings.

Oldaker did not respond to a request for comment left at his office.

2003-2005: National Group LLP

While serving as a partner at Oldaker, Biden & Belair, Hunter also registered as a lobbyist for National Group, a lobbying-only subsidiary which shared offices with OB&B and specialized in targeted spending items inserted into legislation known as “earmarks.”

Hunter represented his father’s alma mater, the University of Delaware, and other Biden constituents and submitted requests to Biden’s office for earmarks benefiting these clients in appropriations bills.

2006-2007: Paradigm Companies LLC

In 2005, when Joe Biden was thinking about making another run at the White House, after a 1987 bid that ended in plagiarism charges, his lobbyist son was looking for a new line of work too.

In early 2006, Wall Street executive and Biden family friend Anthony Lotito said, Biden’s younger brother, Jim, phoned him on behalf of the senator. He said Biden wanted his youngest son – whom he still called “Honey” – to get out of the lobbying business to avoid allegations of conflicts of interest that might dog Biden’s presidential bid.

“Biden was concerned with the impact that Hunter’s lobbying activities might have on his expected campaign [and asked his brother to] seek Lotito’s assistance in finding employment for Hunter in a non-lobbying capacity,” according to a January 2007 complaint that Lotito filed in New York state court against Hunter over alleged breach of contract in a related venture. (Jim and Hunter Biden denied such a phone call took place as described.)

Lotito told the court he agreed to help Hunter as a favor to the senator, who had served on the powerful banking committee. He figured “the financial community might be a good starting place in which to seek out employment on Hunter’s behalf,” the court documents state. But he quickly found that Wall Street had “no interest” in hiring Biden.

So the Bidens hatched a scheme to buy a hedge fund, “whereby Hunter would then assume a senior executive position with the company.” And Lotito helped broker the deal. Despite having no Wall Street experience, Biden was appointed interim CEO and president of the Paradigm investment fund and given a $1.2 million salary, according to SEC filings. Lotito joined the enterprise as a partner, and agreed to shepherd Hunter, still in his mid-30s, through his new role in high-finance.

“Given Hunter Biden’s inexperience in the securities industry,” the complaint states, it was agreed that Lotito would maintain an office at the new holding company’s New York headquarters “in order to assist Biden in discharging his duties as president.”

After the venture failed, Lotito sued the Bidens for fraud. The Bidens countersued and the two parties settled in 2008.

2006-2009: Amtrak

During this same period, Hunter was appointed vice chairman of the taxpayer-subsidized rail line, thanks to the sponsorship of powerful Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, a political ally of his father.

In a 2006 statement submitted to the Senate during his confirmation, Hunter asserted that he was qualified for the Amtrak board because “as a frequent commuter and Amtrak customer for over 30 years, I have literally logged thousands of miles on Amtrak.”

Amtrak has been a major supporter of Joe Biden, donating to both his Senate and presidential campaigns and even naming a train station after him in Wilmington. In return, Biden has supported taxpayer subsidies for the government railroad throughout his political career.

In his testimony, Hunter denied his Amtrak appointment pushed conflict-of-interest boundaries.

2009- : Rosemont Seneca Partners LLC

Hunter co-founded the investment firm five months after his father moved into the White House and incorporated it in his father’s home state of Delaware, which has strict corporate secrecy rules.

At the time, President Barack Obama had tapped Vice President Biden to oversee the recovery from the financial crisis. Three weeks after Rosemont was incorporated, Hunter and his partners set up a subsidiary called Rosemont TALF and got $24 million in loans from the federal program known as the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility. TALF was designed to help bail out banks and auto lenders hit by the crisis.

Within months, Rosemont had secured a total of $130 million from the program. Some of the government cash was then funneled into an investment fund incorporated in the Cayman Islands, SEC records show. Such offshore accounts are commonly used to evade taxes.

The move raised ethical flags with government watchdogs who suspected the bailout cash was used to benefit a well-connected insider.

Other records reveal that another subsidiary created years later – Rosemont Realty – touted to its investors that board adviser Hunter was politically connected. It highlighted in a company prospectus that he was the “son of Vice President Biden.”

2009-2012: Eudora Global

On his resume, Hunter also lists himself as “founder” of yet another investment firm. But Eudora’s articles of incorporation show it was actually set up by a major Biden donor, Jeffrey Cooper, who put Hunter on his board after his father became vice president.

A self-described “friend of the Biden family,” Cooper also happened to run one of the largest asbestos-litigation firms in the country — SimmonsCooper LLC — and had courted Biden to make it easier to file asbestos lawsuits by defeating tort reforms. As a leader on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Biden had blocked reform of asbestos litigation every time bills reached the Senate floor.

Cooper’s law firm, which directly lobbied the Delaware senator’s office to kill such bills, donated more than $200,000 to Biden’s campaigns over the years, as well as his Unite Our States PAC, FEC records show. In fact, SimmonsCooper was one of Biden’s biggest donors during his failed 2007-2008 run for president, pumping $53,000 into his campaign.

The firm also put up $1 million in investment capital to help his son buy out the Paradigm hedge fund as part of the arrangement brokered by another Biden family friend, Lotito, to find non-lobbying work for Hunter. Thanks in large part to Biden’s effort to kill bills reining in asbestos trial lawyers, SimmonsCooper has hauled in more than $1 billion for alleged asbestos victims.

Attempts to reach Cooper for comment were unsuccessful.

2009-2016: Boies Schiller Flexner LLP

When Joe Biden became vice president, Hunter landed a high-paying, no-show job at the New York-based law firm, a Democrat shop long tied to the Clintons. Another major Biden donor, the firm gave him the title “of counsel.”

Boies Schiller brought Hunter aboard in 2009 after the Bidens hired the firm to defend Hunter against charges he defrauded partners in the Paradigm investment venture. Boies Schiller managed to get the case dismissed.

In 2014, a corrupt Ukrainian oligarch, who was under investigation and looking to repair his reputation to attract Western investors, started sending large payments to Boies to support Hunter for unspecified work. It’s unclear what Hunter did for the oligarch, who ran the gas giant Burisma, but $283,000 showed up at the same time his father was tapped by Obama to play a central role in overseeing U.S. energy policy in Ukraine.

Boies Schiller has pumped more than $50,000 into Biden’s campaigns, Federal Election Commission records show.

2013-2019: BHR Partners

After Obama named Biden his point man on China policy, Rosemont Seneca set up a joint venture worth $1 billion with the Bank of China called BHR – and Hunter was named vice chairman and director of the new concern.

Following in the shadow of his father’s political trajectory, Hunter’s new venture won the first-of-its-kind investment deal with the Chinese government at the same time Biden was jetting to Beijing to meet with top communist leaders. Secret Service records reveal Hunter flew to China on Air Force Two with his father while brokering the December 2013 deal. He arranged for one of his Chinese partners to shake hands with the vice president. BHR was registered 12 days later. Beijing OK’d a business license shortly afterward.

“No one else had such an arrangement in China,” said Peter Schweizer, president of the Government Accountability Institute.

Hunter resigned from the board of the Beijing-backed equity firm earlier this year as his father faced growing criticism on the campaign trail over what critics called a glaring conflict of interest. He did not, however, divest his 10 percent equity stake in the Chinese fund, which is estimated to be worth tens of millions of dollars.

Schweizer, whose books include “Profiles in Corruption: Abuse of Power by America’s Progressive Elites,” said Biden went “soft” on the Chinese communists so his son could “cash in” on China business deals. Biden insists he did not discuss the venture with his son before, during, or after his official visit to Beijing. But others see obvious hypocrisy at play in the Biden family’s self-dealing in notoriously corrupt China.

“Biden was one of the most vocal champions of anti-corruption efforts in the Obama administration. So when this same Biden takes his son with him to China aboard Air Force Two, and within days Hunter joins the board of an investment advisory firm with stakes in China, it does not matter what father and son discussed,” said Sarah Chayes, author of “Thieves of State: Why Corruption Threatens National Security.” “Joe Biden has enabled this brand of practice.”

2013-2014: U.S. Navy Reserve

Hunter was selected for a direct commission as a public affairs officer in a Virginia reserve unit.

He clearly received special treatment in securing the part-time post. Officers had to issue him two waivers – one for his age and one for a previous drug offense. His vice president father swore him in at the White House in a small, private ceremony.

Barely a year later, authorities booted Hunter from the Navy for cocaine use after he tested positive from a urine test. The reason for his discharge was withheld from the press for several months.

2014-2019: Burisma Holdings

The Ukrainian gas giant added Hunter to its board soon after Obama named his father his point man on Ukraine policy, focusing on energy. The company paid his son as much as $83,000 a month, even though he had no energy experience to bring to the table and was required to attend just one board meeting a year.

At the time, the vice president was steering U.S. aid to Kyiv to help develop its gas fields, which stood to benefit Burisma as the holder of permits to develop natural gas in three of Ukraine’s most lucrative fields. Biden promised Ukrainian officials the United States would pump more than $1 billion into their energy industry and economy during a visit to Kyiv in late April 2014. He urged leaders to increase the country’s gas supply and to rely on Americans to help them. Less than three weeks later, Burisma appointed his son to the board, after already retaining him for undisclosed services through Boies Schiller.

Burisma was run by an oligarch, Mykola Zlochevsky, who was under investigation at the time and seeking Western protection from prosecution. In a move observers suspect was intended to send a message to prosecutors, the company sent out a news release in May 2014 claiming, falsely, that Hunter would be in charge of its “legal unit.” Burisma also trumpeted the fact that Hunter was “the son of the current U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden.”

Biden’s office was aware Burisma was under investigation. The administration had tried to partner with the gas company through U.S. aid programs, but the outreach project was blocked over corruption concerns lodged by career diplomats.

In early 2016, Biden threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees if Ukraine did not dismiss the country’s top prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, who was investigating Burisma. “If the prosecutor is not fired,” Biden recalled telling Ukraine’s leader, “you’re not getting the money.”

Biden’s muscling worked: Shokin was sacked in March 2016.

The former vice president says he was carrying out official U.S. policy that sought to remove an ineffective prosecutor. But Shokin had raided the home of Burisma’s owner and seized his property.

In addition, Shokin said that as part of his probe he was making plans to interview Hunter about millions of dollars in fees he and his partners had received from Burisma. He insists he was fired because he refused to close the investigation.

“The truth is that I was forced out because I was leading a wide-ranging corruption probe into Burisma, and Joe Biden’s son was a member of the board,” Shokin said in a recent sworn affidavit prepared for a European court. “I assume Burisma had the support of Joe Biden because his son was on the board.” He added that the vice president himself had “significant interests” in Burisma.

The prosecutor who replaced Shokin shut down the Burisma probe within 10 months. Burisma’s founder was also taken off a U.S. government visa ban list.

Biden claims he only learned of his son joining the Burisma board from the news media. But there is evidence Biden had been consulted in advance. White House visitor logs show that Biden met with Hunter’s business partner Devon Archer on April 16, 2014. Burisma put Archer on its board shortly thereafter, followed by Hunter the next month. (Both Archer and Hunter maintain Burisma never came up during the private visit in Biden’s office, which lasted late into the night.)

The day after Joe Biden’s meeting with Hunter’s partner in the White House, Burisma executive Vadym Pozharskyi reportedly emailed Hunter to thank him for inviting him to Washington and “giving an opportunity to meet your father and spent[sic] some time together.” The Biden campaign asserts it cannot find a meeting with Pozharskyi on the former vice president’s “schedule,” though it did not deny such a meeting could have taken place. The Ukrainian official mentioned going out for coffee with Hunter on April 17, 2014, which indicated he was physically in D.C. at the time. RCI has not confirmed the authenticity of the April 17 email document, first disclosed by the New York Post after obtaining it from a hard drive allegedly copied from a laptop of Hunter Biden left at a computer repair shop in Wilmington, Delaware. Pozharskyi did not respond to emails seeking comment.

Hunter stepped down from Burisma’s board in April 2019, a month before his father announced his White House bid and after critics made an issue of the conflicts his sinecure posed. He has since kept a very low profile. Unlike Trump’s children, Biden’s son is not out on the trail campaigning for him.

1,850 Boxes Sealed Until After Election

“Hunter Biden had no experience in the field, but he did have a notable connection to the vice president, who publicly has bragged about making clear to the Ukrainians that he alone controlled U.S. aid to the country,” noted Jonathan Turley, a public-interest law professor at George Washington University.

Retired FBI official I.C. Smith, who led public corruption investigations in Washington and Little Rock, Arkansas, said both father and son should have known joining Burisma was a bad idea, adding that it gives at least the appearance he was leveraging his name for payoffs from shady clients abroad.

“Clearly he’s led a troubled life and would be the sort of person susceptible to becoming engaged in this sort of rather sordid deal,” Smith said of Hunter.

“When he said his father asked if the deal was on the up and up and was assured it was, I would think, given Hunter’s past, the father would have asked more questions,” he added.

Hunter acknowledged in an ABC News interview last year that he lacked experience in both energy and Ukraine, but maintained that Burisma was impressed by other things on his resume.

“Ironically, Hunter highlighted his work at MBNA and his work on the board of Amtrak as evidence of his qualifications for the Burisma gig,” said Fitton of Judicial Watch. “But both the MBNA and Amtrak jobs, under any sensible analysis, were obvious favors for Joe Biden.”

Fitton argued that Biden’s claim he never discussed his son’s jobs and business deals rings hollow against the lengthy record of something-for-nothing nepotism.

“That’s campaign spin,” he said. “Hunter has already admitted to having at least one conversation on the Ukraine issue with Vice President Biden.”

Biden defenders argue that many relatives of politicians are often involved in government and politics. Ivanka Trump and Don Trump Jr., for instance, have cozy relationships with, or financial stakes in, companies that may benefit from those decisions. They also point out that, while they may look bad, there’s nothing illegal about such arrangements.

Fitton isn’t so sure. He said Judicial Watch is demanding Obama administration documents related to Hunter’s Ukraine and China deals, as well as other business arrangements potentially monetizing Biden’s political power.

“We can’t be sure if the arrangements were legal,” he said. “If any payments or jobs were neither ordinary nor customary, there may be legal issues.”

It’s a federal crime to provide a government benefit or favorable change in policy in exchange for something of personal value. At a minimum, argued former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy, Biden “had a conflict of interest with the position his son had” on the Burisma board, noting that at the time, Biden was pushing energy policies that favored the gas giant.

Not all of Hunter Biden’s critics are coming from the right, either.

“It’s hard to avoid the conclusion that Hunter’s foreign employers and partners were seeking to leverage Hunter’s relationship with Joe, either by seeking improper influence or to project access to him,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, a liberal watchdog group based in Washington.

While Joe Biden insists “there’s been no indication of any conflict of interest from Ukraine or anywhere else,” Senate investigators are seeking a number of related emails and memos generated during the Obama administration, as well as his 36-year Senate career. That period, spanning from 1973 to 2009, coincides with a large chunk of his son’s resume.

However, Biden has sealed the bulk of the records at the University of Delaware Library, which refuses to release any of his papers until after the election. It maintains more than 1,850 boxes of Biden records, including his speeches, voting records, position papers, and notes from confidential interviews he’s conducted with foreign leaders, among other documents. The papers the university is keeping a lid on could shed light on Biden’s thinking behind foreign policies and controversial bills he sponsored.

A spokeswoman said the library will not release any of Biden’s papers to the public until they are “properly processed and archived.” Until then, “access is only available with Vice President Biden’s express consent,” she said, while declining to answer whether the university would comply if the Senate subpoenaed documents as part of its investigation of the Bidens.

The university houses the Biden Institute, which is part of the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration.

Through a lawyer, Hunter maintained he and his father dutifully avoided “conflicts of interest” — or even “the appearance of such conflicts.” In every business pursuit, he asserted, they acted “appropriately and in good faith.”

However, in a moment of candor during a recent ABC News interview, Hunter confessed: “I don’t think that there’s a lot of things that would have happened in my life if my last name wasn’t Biden,” before adding, “There’s literally nothing my father in some way hasn’t had influence over.”

Still, the elder Biden argues it’s the Trump family who has the nepotism problem. In a recent CBS “60 Minutes” interview, he slammed the president for letting his daughter and son-in-law “sit in on Cabinet meetings.”

“It’s just simply improper because you should make it clear to the American public that everything you’re doing is for them,” he intoned. “For them.”

This article was originally published by RealClearInvestigations.

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Clapper, Brennan: Hunter Biden Emails ‘Russian Disinformation’ Whether ‘Genuine or Not’

More than 50 former intelligence officials, led by Obama-era Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, have signed an open letter alleging that the newly-released Hunter Biden emails are “Russian disinformation” — even if they are real.

Clapper, who helped push the conspiracy theory that there had been “collusion” between Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and the Russian government, was joined by others — including former CIA Director John Brennan, who also promoted the Russia hoax.

Earlier this month, declassified documents suggested that Brennan had briefed then-President Barack Obama on a plan by Hillary Clinton’ campaign to accused Trump of close ties with Russia, in order to distract from her own scandals.

Politico broke the news of the letter Monday evening, giving it great importance: “More than 50 former senior intelligence officials have signed on to a letter outlining their belief that the recent disclosure of emails allegedly belonging to Joe Biden’s son “has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

However, the intelligence officials seemed to show no concern for the possibility that the emails show that Joe Biden could be compromised by foreign powers — the same concern that ostensibly launched the investigation into Trump’s campaign.

The letter says, in part (original emphasis):

[W]e write to say that the arrival on the US political scene of emails purportedly belonging to Vice President Biden’s son Hunter, much of it related to his time serving on the Board of the Ukrainian gas company Burisma, has all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.

We want to emphasize that we do not know if the emails, provided to the New York Post by President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, are genuine or not and that we do not have evidence of Russian involvement — just that our experience makes us deeply suspicious that the Russian government played a significant role in this case.

If we are right, this is Russia trying to influence how Americans vote in this election, and we believe strongly that Americans need to be aware of this.

Read the letter here.

Current Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe said Monday that the emails were not part of a Russian disinformation campaign.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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Journalist Alleges Sexual Harassment by Rick Jacobs, Aide to L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti

Yashar Ali, a contributor to New York magazine and HuffPost who is a ubiquitous presence on Twitter, alleged Monday evening that he was sexually harassed by Rick Jacobs, a key political advisor to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.

In July, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Officer Matthew Garza sued the city, claiming that Jacobs had sexually harassed him by touching him inappropriately and making offensive remarks — sometimes when Garcetti was present.

The city is fighting the lawsuit, and “Garcetti has publicly stood by Jacobs since the lawsuit was filed,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

In a series of tweets Ali accused Jacobs of harassing him — and accused Garcetti of failing to do anything about it:

Ali added in an accompanying article:

I never want to put myself in the middle of a story, but in this case, I’ve been left with no choice. Several prominent news outlets have slow-walked this story. I also ethically can’t report out this news without revealing that I have been a victim of Jacobs’ misconduct as well.

In my previous career, I worked in Democratic politics and would often encounter Jacobs at fundraisers. I considered him a friend, and we had many acquaintances in common. Jacobs would often host dinners at his home, where he would gather prominent power players in Los Angeles politics, culture and entertainment. I attended at least a half dozen of these dinners over the years.

The incidents where Jacobs would forcibly kiss me always happened in front of others and at political and social functions. Jacobs would grab my face and kiss me on the lips—always twice—and he would turn to other people who witnessed it and say, “He has the softest lips.” Jacobs would also hug me in the same way Garza described in his complaint. A source described it to me as a “power hug,” but Jacobs’ hugs were more than hugs. I remember commenting to him once that he was hugging me so hard I felt like my teeth were going to break. (And besides, no one should be hugged without their consent.)

I never initiated or acted receptive to what Jacobs was doing, though I never told him to stop. Jacobs and I were never in a workplace environment, either. But forcibly kissing someone on the lips isn’t normal interaction between friends and unquestionably requires consent. (It is also considered assault under California’s penal code.) Over the years, I moved on and didn’t give those interactions much thought. After the #MeToo movement was reignited and I interviewed many women and some men about their experiences with sexual assault, harassment and rape, I thought about Jacobs and what he had done to me, and I shared my frustration with friends about how I had responded to his assaults.

Ali noted that Garcetti was under consideration to serve in a potential Joe Biden cabinet.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His newest e-book is The Trumpian Virtues: The Lessons and Legacy of Donald Trump’s Presidency. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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