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HomePoliticsJoe Biden Keeps Troubled Son Hunter Close Despite Political Backlash

Joe Biden Keeps Troubled Son Hunter Close Despite Political Backlash

But while some perceive Hunter as the black sheep of America’s first family, the 80-year-old Joe Biden has stubbornly stood by his lone surviving son, amid a backdrop of sorrow.

Washington:┬áIf US President Joe Biden has ever concerned about the effect his son Hunter’s issues may have on his 2024 re-election attempt, he’s never indicated it. Hunter Biden’s past of dubious business ventures, drugs and women has long made him a target for the older Biden’s Republican critics.

That resulted in the opening of a House impeachment probe against the president on Tuesday.

But while some perceive Hunter as the black sheep of America’s first family, the 80-year-old Joe Biden has stubbornly stood by his lone surviving son, amid a backdrop of sorrow.

“My son’s done nothing wrong. I trust him. I have trust in him,” Biden remarked in an interview earlier this year regarding tax and firearms accusations against the 53-year-old Hunter.

Asked how Hunter’s difficulties may effect his administration, Biden replied: “It impacts my presidency by making me proud of him.”

Yet although Biden’s affection has been unshakable, Hunter’s difficulties show no sign of receding.

In fact, the impeachment inquiry looking at whether Biden lied about his son’s business ties in Ukraine and China promise to cause a larger issue than ever for the White House ahead of next year’s election.

‘Lost hope’

The Bidens’ friendship was established through tremendous loss.

A automobile incident in 1972 killed Hunter’s mother Neilia and infant sister Naomi, leaving two-year-old Hunter with a shattered skull and his elder brother Beau with several broken bones.

“The pain had seemed unbearable in the beginning,” Joe Biden writes in his 2017 memoir “Promise Me, Dad.”

He was sworn in as a newly-elected senator beside Hunter and Beau’s hospital bedside and it was just the three of them until he met his second wife, Jill.

“They’d always been there for each other, from the time they were little boys,” Biden wrote.

Yet Hunter also suffered in the shadow of Beau, who had a fine military career and moved into politics, with Biden hoping Beau may one day be president.

A graduate of Yale law school, Hunter meandered between roles in government, banking and lobbying until settling at a family-controlled hedge fund and his own international business consultancy in the late 2000s.

His life became more damaged by drunkenness and addiction to crack cocaine. In 2014 he was expelled from the Navy Reserve following a positive test for cocaine.

Things worsened severely when his brother died from brain illness in 2015, aged 46.

“After Beau died, I never felt more alone. I lost hope,” he writes in his 2021 book “Beautiful Things.”

His marriage disintegrated and he lost custody of his three girls. His ex-wife Kathleen Buhle stated in her biography his addictions worsened and he piled up expenses for strip clubs and liquor stores.

Hunter then had an affair with Beau’s widow and had a daughter with a lady in Arkansas whom Joe Biden just recently officially acknowledged as his seventh grandchild.

Then he saw his papers, emails and explicit images from his laptop computer made public by his father’s critics, as they accused a poisonous brew of nepotism between Joe Biden and his son.

‘Wholly unavoidable’

Despite all that, the teetotal Joe Biden has consistently backed Hunter.

“My son, like a lot of people… had a drug problem,” Biden remarked when Donald Trump addressed Hunter’s drug usage and business connections during a TV discussion in the 2020 presidential election.

Hunter stated he’d been clean since 2019 following an intervention by his second wife Melissa — with whom he has a son, Beau — and his father.

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

“There were times when his persistence infuriated me — I’d attempt to fade to black through alcoholism or drug addiction, and then there he was, barging in again with his lantern, shining a light, disrupting my plans to disappear,” he recalled.

He took up painting — albeit that caused further controversy when unknown collectors acquired his pieces for sums in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Biden has kept his son close this year, taking him to Ireland in April and entertaining him on the White House balcony for Independence Day celebrations.

But the New York Times last week reported anonymous Biden supporters as arguing that doing so “has resulted in wholly avoidable political distractions.”

 

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