Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) said there are “tough” ethical questions that loom around Hunter Biden, who is “still investing in CCP [Chinese Communist Party]-linked firms,” as he is expected to sell his artwork for up to half a million dollars to “anonymous” buyers.
“Some very tough ethical questions about whether the president’s son, who is still investing in CCP-linked firms, should take $500,000 in payment (bribes) for his ‘artwork,'” Cotton said in reaction to reports of the White House crafting a plan to address mounting ethics questions surrounding Hunter Biden’s art venture.
“Better consult the experts on this one!” the Arkansas senator added:
Some very tough ethical questions about whether the president's son, who is still investing in CCP-linked firms, should take $500,000 in payment (bribes) for his "artwork."
Better consult the experts on this one!https://t.co/uLubqk40nl
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) July 8, 2021
His remarks follow reports of the White House working on a plan to address ethical concerns over Hunter Biden’s art sales, particularly in light of the lingering accusations of members of the Biden family, including Hunter himself, cashing in on their family name over the years. Notably, money laundering has already been identified by lawmakers as a major issue in the art world, which is largely cloaked in secrecy, as a bipartisan Senate investigation detailed last year.
Hunter Biden is working with Soho art dealer Georges Bergès, who has links to China himself. Bergès is holding an art exhibition in the fall, where Hunter’s art is expected to sell anywhere from $75,000-$500,000. The entire venture has prompted ethics concerns, particularly given Hunter’s past work as his father served as vice president — striking deals with Chinese officials and raking in tens of thousands of dollars per month serving on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian oligarch-owned oil and gas company, despite having no experience in the energy sector. His father would later brag about threatening to withhold aid from Ukraine unless officials fired the prosecutor conducting a corruption investigation into Burisma.
But instead of making the transactions more transparent and open, the White House is hoping to strike a deal to make buyers of Hunter Biden’s artwork, which is expected to sell for up to half a million dollars, anonymous.
According to the Washington Post, Bergès would determine the prices for the artwork and withhold “all records, including potential bidders and final buyers.”
“The owner, Georges Bergès, has also agreed to reject any offer that he deems suspicious or that comes in over the asking price, according to people familiar with the agreement,” the Post reported.
Breitbart News senior contributor and Profiles in Corruption author Peter Schweizer described the proposal as an utterly “absurd” solution.
“The only way to address these issues is with greater transparency–not less,” he told Breitbart News. “Their proposed solution is greater secrecy, not transparency. And they are essentially saying ‘Trust Us.’ Joe and Hunter Biden’s track record on such matters gives us no reason to trust them.”
Walter Shaub, who served as the Office of Government Ethics director under former President Obama, also blasted the Biden administration, calling this move the “opposite of government ethics.”
“White House officials getting involved in any way other than to request transparency amounts to effectively putting an official stamp of approval on the president’s son trading on his father’s public service,” Shaub told Fox News, also lamenting the purported plan on social media as well:
The idea’s that even Hunter won’t know, but the WH has outsourced government ethics to a private art dealer. We’re supposed to trust a merchant in an industry that’s fertile ground for money laundering, as well as unknown buyers who could tell Hunter or WH officials? No thanks./2
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) July 8, 2021
Yeah yeah, I know some folks aren’t going to like this thread because we’re not supposed to criticize the president who’s way better than the ethical disaster named Trump. But, you know what? With democracy on the ropes, ethics has never been more important. And this ain’t it. /4
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) July 8, 2021
President Joe Biden has remained relatively mum on his scandal-plagued son’s latest venture, but Hunter hinted his father is a fan of his work.
“My dad loves everything that I do, and so I’ll leave it at that,” he told Artnet.