President Trump on Tuesday said Attorney General William Barr needs to “act” and “appoint somebody” after nearly a dozen House Republicans urged him to tap a special counsel to investigate alleged revelations coming from a laptop purported to have belonged to Joe Biden’s son Hunter.
During an exclusive interview with “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday, the president criticized his Democratic opponent and Hunter Biden, saying he “walked around like a vacuum.”
“This is the laptop from hell,” Trump said. “Even if he didn’t get all of this money, you can’t go to China and have the son walk out with $1.5 billion. ... You can’t go to Ukraine with $83,000 a month. ... You can’t get $3.5 million from the mayor of Moscow’s wife.”
“And you didn’t have a job before your father was vice president,” Trump continued. “You can’t go and go with your father and every stop you make, you pick up $1 billion.”
He added: “The vice president got a kickback, and everybody knows it, and they’ve known it a long time.”
The president was referring to an email allegedly belonging to Hunter Biden, and obtained by Fox News. The email, dated May 13, 2017, includes a discussion of “renumeration packages” for six people in a business deal with a Chinese energy firm. The email appeared to identify Hunter Biden as “Chair/Vice Chair depending on an agreement with CEFC,” an apparent reference to now-bankrupt CEFC China Energy Co.
The email includes a note that “Hunter has some office expectations he will elaborate.” A proposed equity split references “20” for “H” and “10 held by H for the big guy?” with no further details.
Fox News spoke to one of the people who was copied on the email, who confirmed its authenticity. Sources also told Fox News that “the big guy” was a reference to the former vice president.
While Biden has not commented on that email or his alleged involvement in any deals with the Chinese energy firm, his campaign said it released the former vice president’s tax documents and returns, which show no involvement with Chinese investments.
“We’ve got to get the attorney general to act,” Trump said. “He’s gotta act, and he’s gotta act fast, and he’s gotta appoint somebody.”The president added: “This is major corruption, and we have to know about this before the election. The attorney general has to act.”
The president’s calls on Barr come after nearly a dozen House Republicans including Reps. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., Ted Yoho, R-Fla., and Andy Harris, R-Md., penned a letter to Barr urging him to appoint a special counsel.
“These alleged revelations raise serious questions about former Vice President Joe Biden’s reported participation with his son’s business, dealings, specifically whether the former vice president (1) received foreign monies during his tenure in the Obama administration and (2) if former Vice President Biden allowed his son to peddle access to his father with foreign business entities,” the letter, exclusively obtained by Fox News, says.
The letter was written after the New York Post published emails last week suggesting that Hunter Biden introduced his father to a top executive at Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma Holdings in 2015 -- one year before the then-vice president allegedly pressured the country's government to fire a prosecutor who had launched an investigation into the company’s founder.
The Biden campaign has said that Joe Biden never met with that executive and has pushed back on the New York Post reporting.
Biden, prior to the emails surfacing, repeatedly has claimed he’s “never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.”
But the Republican lawmakers said it was “imperative” that there was “a full accounting of former Vice President Biden’s dealings with this son and his son’s business partners, and if the former vice president misused his office for personal gain,”
“We request that the Department of Justice immediately appoint an independent, unbiased special counsel to investigate the issues that we have raised -- as well as any corresponding legal or ethical issues that might be uncovered from the former vice president’s 47 years in public office," the lawmakers wrote.
Meanwhile, Democrats, including House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., have tried to cast the laptop and the emails on them as Russian disinformation. Schiff, over the weekend, said it came “from the Kremlin.”
But Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on Monday said that Hunter Biden’s laptop “is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign,” amid claims from Schiff and other Democrats suggesting otherwise.
“Let me be clear: the intelligence community doesn’t believe that because there is no intelligence that supports that. And we have shared no intelligence with Adam Schiff, or any member of Congress.”
Ratcliffe went on to say that it is “simply not true.”
“Hunter Biden’s laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign,” Ratcliffe said, adding again that “this is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign.”