The White House struggled Wednesday to address ethical concerns about President Joe Biden’s son Hunter and his participation in an art show of his work with potential buyers.
On Friday, Hunter Biden met and took photos with potential art buyers at a Los Angeles art show featuring his art despite ethics concerns about special interests trying to leverage art purchases to gain favor with the Biden family.
Guests at the show included boxer Sugar Ray Leonard, musician Moby, and British performance artist Millie Brown, according to the Daily Mail.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti also attended the show as he awaits Senate confirmation after President Biden nominated him to serve as the United States ambassador to India.
Hunter’s paintings are priced between $75,000 and $500,000.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki referred all questions about the art gallery event to Hunter Biden’s gallerist, struggling to dodge the ethics conflict entirely.
“We’ve spoken to the specifics that the gallerist has agreed to and what recommendations were made. I’ve done that several times. I don’t have any other details for you from here, I’d point you to them,” Psaki replied after CBS reporter Steven Portnoy questioned her on the topic.
As Portnoy pressed his case, Psaki continued, “I would point you to the gallerist on specifics of the restrictions that were put in place.”
The White House previously said the identities of the people purchasing Hunter’s art would remain secret from him and the White House.
But Hunter’s appearance at the gallery with potential buyers raises questions about the ethics structure surrounding his art.
Walter Shaub, the head of the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) under former President Barack Obama has expressed his concerns about the ethics arrangement, recommending that the buyers be made public, not kept secret.
When a second reporter questioned why the White House refused to enact more transparency into the purchasers of Hunter’s art, Psaki effectively claimed they were very transparent about not being transparent.
“We were very transparent about what recommendations were made to the gallerist and I would again point you to them, or the many times I’ve spoken about them from here,” she replied.