Republican Senators Demand To Know Secret Service Involvement In Hunter Biden Gun Scandal

Republican Senators Demand To Know Secret Service Involvement In Hunter Biden Gun Scandal

If Secret Service was secretly keeping a hand in Biden family security in 2018, Sens. Grassley and Johnson said the agency 'must explain to Congress why such informal actions were taken.'
Kylee Zempel
By

Two Republican lawmakers sent a letter to the head of Secret Service on Thursday demanding records of the agency’s involvement in the case of Hunter Biden’s missing firearm in late 2018, a story Politico reported last week.

“In light of the recent press report, please provide all records relating to your agency’s involvement in the alleged October 2018 incident with respect to Hunter Biden’s firearm no later than April 8, 2021,” wrote GOP Sens. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin on March 25.

The report to which the senators are referring is a bizarre story about a .38 revolver Hunter Biden purchased in late 2018 that Hallie Biden, Hunter’s love interest and the wife of his late brother Beau Biden, says she disposed of in a trash can behind a grocery store and across from a school after having discovered the firearm while rifling through Hunter’s truck over her “suspicions” of him.

In what appears to be a text message sent by Hunter, he acknowledged these suspicions, saying Hallie “stole the gun out of my truck lock box … because she was scared I would harm myself due to my drug and alcohol problem and our volatile relationship and that she was afraid for the kids.”

The same text includes the concession that the police, the FBI, and the Secret Service were all involved after the incident, involvement the Secret Service has denied but the two Republican senators are now looking into.

“One law enforcement official said that at the time of the incident, individual Secret Service agents at the agency’s offices in Wilmington, Del., and Philadelphia kept an informal hand in maintaining the former vice president’s security,” Politico reported. “The person cited an instance in 2019 when the Wilmington office of the Secret Service called the Delaware State Police to arrange security for a public appearance by Biden.”

According to Politico, soon afterward police and the FBI — which was also looking into the Biden for potential tax crimes, an investigation that is still ongoing — arrived at the grocer because when Hallie later returned to retrieve the gun, it was gone. Then two Secret Service agents with “badges and identification cards” reportedly visited the gun store where Hunter had bought the revolver earlier that month. The agents reportedly told the owner to turn over the Firearms Transaction Record from the purchase.

The store owner “suspected that the Secret Service officers wanted to hide Hunter’s ownership of the missing gun in case it were to be involved in a crime,” according to multiple people with a “firsthand knowledge of the episode.” So he kept possession of the paperwork until the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF), the agency authorized to review the forms, could get to them.

“Any involvement by the Secret Service on behalf of the Biden family or on its own initiative would be inappropriate interference in an incident that was already being investigated by Delaware State Police with the involvement of the FBI, according to law enforcement officials,” Politico reported.

A spokesman for Secret Service has said the agency does not have a record of involvement in the ordeal. “U.S. Secret Service records confirm that the agency did not provide protection to any member of the Biden family in 2018, and that the Secret Service had no involvement in this alleged incident,” the agency said. If that’s true, it could indicate Secret Service officers were appearing to act in their official capacity when they were not authorized to do so.

If Secret Service was instead secretly keeping a hand in Biden family security and affairs at that time, Grassley and Johnson said the agency “must explain to Congress why such informal actions were taken and whether they were necessary in light of the circumstances.”

“Further, [Secret Service] failed to fully respond to our October 20, 2020, letter relating to emails that reference travel plans for Hunter Biden involving [Secret Service] agents one year after Hunter Biden’s protection ended,” the two Republican lawmakers said. “We continue to expect a complete response to that letter and ask that you produce all requested records no later than April 8, 2021.”

Grassley and Johnson’s impulse to investigate the latest Hunter Biden drama is one that other GOP senators should adopt in the days ahead. President Joe Biden is expected to nominate someone to be director of the ATF, the federal law enforcement organization within the Department of Justice that oversees the forms Hunter Biden filled out to purchase the gun. This nomination would require a Senate confirmation.

It appears likely that Hunter Biden lied on the federal background check form, answering “no” to whether he used numerous illicit drugs. Hunter’s history of drug abuse is well-known and led to many bouts of rehab, a discharge from the military, and a failed marriage. Reports also indicate Hunter was suspected of smoking crack cocaine in a strip club VIP room in “late 2018.” The Biden son purchased the firearm in October 2018.

Any Biden nominee to lead the ATF could present a glaring conflict of interest since that agency should be investigating Hunter Biden and whether he lied on a federal form about drug use to obtain a gun, which would be a felony.

Kylee Zempel is an assistant editor at The Federalist. Follow her on Twitter @kyleezempel.

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