Earlier this week, Biden campaign spokeswoman Kate Bedingfield attempted to defend the Biden family’s shady business dealings in Ukraine while Joe was vice president, and ended up implicating Barack Obama instead.
While his father was vice president and handling U.S. relations with Ukraine, Hunter Biden got a lucrative position on the board of Burisma Holdings. Despite having no experience in the field, Hunter Biden was making as much a $166,000 a month, sparking allegations that he was selling access to the White House.
“Every single independent outlet that’s looked into this has said there’s no issue of wrongdoing here,” Bedingfield claimed, before adding, “In 2014 the White House cleared Hunter Biden serving on that board.”
That’s right, she admitted that the Obama White House cleared Hunter Biden sitting on Burisma’s board.
This is not the first time Barack Obama has been dragged into the scandal by Biden or his campaign. In 2016, while bragging about how he got Ukrainian prosecutor Viktor Shokin (who was investigating Burisma Holdings) fired, he says he told Ukrainian leaders that if they didn’t believe him they could call Barack Obama. “They said, ‘You have no authority. You’re not the president—the president said’ … I said, ‘Call him.’ I said, ‘I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars.’ I said, ‘you’re not getting the billion.'” Earlier this month he justified his actions by saying he was carrying out the “official policy” of the Obama administration.
The real question here is whether Bedingfield’s statement was a slip-up or part of the Biden campaign’s strategy for handling this scandal. Biden never misses an opportunity to name-drop Obama and remind voters he was his vice president. Obama is still very much loved by the Democratic Party, and Biden has made Obama his virtual running mate because it makes it easier for him to shrug off tough questions because if you dare to challenge Quid Pro Joe you must be anti-Obama! Biden has every reason in the world to believe this strategy will work because Barack Obama avoided criticism for his scandals for eight years and was never held accountable.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis