Hunter Biden Served On Board For Group Lobbying Obama Over Ukraine Aid
It overlapped with his time at Burisma.
Several USGLC coalition members lobbied separately for Ukraine-related issues during the same time frame.
Cargill, Coca-Cola, Chevron, Caterpillar and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce all lobbied on Ukraine-related bills in 2014 and 2015.
Traynham, the spokesman for USGLC and the Center for U.S. Global Leadership, said USGLC is broadly focused on increased spending on international development, and that the Ukrainian revolution in 2014 was a natural focus for the organization. He did not address whether Hunter Biden discussed Ukraine with anyone from the trade coalition.
“The Center for U.S. Global Leadership is a non-profit organization and individuals volunteer their time to serve on our board to advance our mission to create a better, safer world,” Trayham said in a statement.
“The organization advocates on only one issue: the overall importance of the International Affairs Budget, which seeks to strengthen America’s global leadership through diplomacy and global development,” he added.
The statement also said that Hunter Biden joined the center’s board “while serving as Chairman of the World Food Program USA.” Biden was on the board of the organization, but USGLC and the Center for U.S. Global Leadership cited his affiliation with Rosemont Seneca, the private equity firm, on its website.
In a twist of irony, Joe Biden would later use U.S. aid to Ukraine that was provided through Sovereignty, Integrity, Democracy and Economic Stability of Ukraine Act of 2014 to influence Yanukovych’s successor as president, Petro Poroshenko.
Joe Biden leveraged the third tranche of funds to force Poroshenko fire Viktor Shokin, who served as Ukraine’s general prosecutor.
Biden’s maneuver was not known until January 2018, when the future Democratic presidential candidate bragged at a Council on Foreign Relations event that he dangled the loan assistance over Poroshenko to get him to fire Shokin.
“And I went over, I guess, the 12th, 13th time to Kiev. And I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee. And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko and from Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn’t,” Biden said at the event.
He said as they were going to an event, he told his Ukrainian counterparts that he was not going to provide the billion dollars.
“They said, ‘you have no authority. You’re not the president,'” Biden recalled.
“I said, ‘I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars.’ I said, ‘you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in,’ I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.'”
“Well, son of a bitch, he got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.”
The U.S. and Ukraine signed an agreement for the loan support months later, on June 3, 2016.
Trump allies have seized on the remarks and Hunter Biden’s role with Burisma to accuse Joe Biden of corruption. Rudy Giuliani, the lawyer for Trump, discovered and began hyping the Biden video from 2018 as evidence of corruption on the part of the former vice president.
Trump was so enamored with the theory that he brought it up during a July 25, 2019, phone call with Poroshenko’s successor, Volodymyr Zelensky. That call eventually led to Trump’s impeachment after a CIA whistleblower alleged in a complaint filed Aug. 12, 2019.
Joe Biden has denied ever intervening with Poroshenko on behalf of his son, or Burisma. Biden and his defenders have also challenged the idea that Shokin was investigating or planned to investigate Burisma, or that Joe Biden was ever aware of an investigation.
Hunter Biden’s lawyer, George Mesires, did not respond to a request for comment.
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Image: U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden attend an NCAA basketball game between Georgetown University and Duke University in Washington, U.S., January 30, 2010. Picture taken January 30, 2010. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst