Hunter Biden, the problematic son of the president of the United States

Hunter Biden

Support us with crypto to keep our newspaper alive

Shady deals, drugs and women. Hunter Biden has lived a turbulent life under two shadows: that of his father, the President of the United States, Joe Biden, who has always supported him, and that of his older brother Beau, who died of cancer in 2015.

The efforts of Hunter Biden, 53, to put his rocky past behind him suffered a setback this Friday when the US Secretary of Justice, Merrick Garland, appointed a special prosecutor to investigate his affairs.

His personal and legal problems make him a target for Republicans, his father’s political opponents, especially now that the president is running for re-election in the 2024 elections.

Republicans in Congress have launched multiple investigations into the deals Hunter Biden did with China and Ukraine when his father was Barack Obama’s vice president (2009-2017).

Hunter Biden reached a plea deal with the Justice Department to avoid jail time on charges of tax evasion and illegal possession of a firearm, but the deal fell through over opposition from a judge. This Friday, in addition, Garland promoted the person investigating the cases to special prosecutor.

There are those who see Hunter as the black sheep of the family, but his father has never turned his back on him.

“My son has done nothing wrong. I trust him. I have faith in him,” Joe Biden said recently as congressional Republicans opened a new investigation.

Alcohol and crack

Hunter graduated from Yale Law School and alternated jobs in government or banking before landing a family-controlled investment fund and his own international business consultancy in the late 2000s.

But his life was marred by addictions to alcohol and crack, alleviated with stints in rehab.

Hunter links them to the traffic accident that killed his mother and sister when he was three years old. He had to be hospitalized with a skull fracture.

He also lived in the shadow of his brother Beau, who had a glittering military career and entered politics before suffering brain cancer in 2015.

Joe Biden often speaks publicly about the death of his eldest son, whom he saw as a possible future president.

He rarely mentioned Hunter, who wrote in his memoirs that after Beau’s death, he used more drugs.

He hit rock bottom when his father stepped down as vice president in 2017. His marriage broke up and he lost custody of his three daughters.

He had an affair with his sister-in-law, Beau’s widow, fathered a daughter with an Arkansas woman who sued him for child support and ultimately suffered the derision of seeing his laptop’s compromising emails and photos published.

The Department of Justice investigated him for the millions of dollars he earned from his investments abroad.

But Joe Biden has always come to his son’s defense, such as during the 2020 presidential race, when Trump brought up Hunter’s drug use and business dealings during a debate.

“My son, like many people (…) had a drug problem,” the president said on television.

“He got over it, he fixed it, he worked on it. And I’m proud of him. I’m proud of my son,” he said.

“He never judged me”

In his 2020 memoir, Hunter Biden recounted his days drinking vodka, wandering seedy neighborhoods at night looking for crack, and his multiple failed attempts at rehab.

He said that in 2019 he got ahead thanks to the intervention of his father and his second wife, Melissa.

The only thing that helped him, he wrote, was his father’s unconditional love.

“He never abandoned me, never rejected me, never judged me, no matter how bad things got,” Hunter wrote.

Hunter claims to have left all that behind. He had a son with Melissa, whom he named Beau, and began painting, though the latter has also generated controversy due to the hundreds of thousands of dollars paid by unidentified collectors for his paintings of him.