Following revelations that he allegedly lied under oath to Congress, Secretary of State Antony Blinken is facing calls from Senate Republicans to turn over communication records related to Hunter Biden and his shady business engagements.
On Monday, Republican Sens. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and Chuck Grassley of Iowa sent a letter to Blinken demanding that he turn over any and all records “referring or relating to Hunter Biden, his business dealings, or his family’s business dealings” by May 15. The request comes as part of Senate Republicans’ investigation into the Biden family’s foreign business ventures.
In the letter, Johnson and Grassley document a series of emails revealing how Blinken seemingly lied under oath about his prior communications with Hunter. While testifying before Congress on Dec. 22, 2020, Blinken was asked if he had any means of correspondence —including phone calls, emails, or texts — with Hunter Biden during his time as President Barack Obama’s deputy secretary of state, to which Blinken replied, “No.”
Emails from Hunter’s laptop, however, appear to contradict Blinken’s December 2020 testimony. As documented in the Johnson-Grassley letter, Hunter emailed Blinken at his personal email address on May 22, 2015, asking if the then-deputy secretary of state was available to meet.
“I know you are impossibly busy, but would like to get your advice on a couple of things,” Hunter wrote, to which Blinken replied, “Absolutely.”
Blinken sent another email to Hunter a few months later on July 22, indicating the two met in person.
“Great to… see you and catch up,” Blinken wrote. “You will love this: after you left, Marjorie, the wonderful african american woman who sits in my outer office (and used to be Colin Powell’s assistant) said to me :’He sure is pleasant on the eyes.’ Tell you wife.”
The Johnson-Grassley letter also raises questions regarding Blinken’s knowledge of Hunter’s role as a Burisma Holdings board member. Burisma Holdings is a Ukrainian gas company that paid Hunter $50,000 a month despite the president’s son having no prior energy experience. Joe Biden has claimed that while vice president, he threatened to withdraw U.S. aid if then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko “didn’t fire state prosecutor Viktor Shokin, who was investigating Burisma at the time.”
Despite Blinken claiming to have no knowledge of Hunter’s Burisma ties during his December 2020 testimony, emails from Hunter’s laptop reveal that Blinken’s wife, Evan Ryan, “corresponded directly with Hunter Biden (from her personal email address) in an apparent attempt to connect [Blinken] with representatives of Burisma’s U.S. lobbying firm, Blue Star Strategies.”
In what appears to be an email chain dated July 14, 2016, Hunter informed Ryan that “S” and “K” — who appear to be Sally Painter and Karen Tramontano, Blue Star Strategies’ Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer — told him “they called the State Department and left a message.” In her email to Hunter, Ryan appeared to reference Blinken, writing “He didn’t get the msg” and “He said if we can get him their numbers he can call them late afternoon DC time tmrw.”
While this specific email exchange doesn’t name Blinken, Johnson and Grassley noted that State Department documents obtained during their inquiry “make it clear that [Blinken was] concurrently trying to connect with representatives from Blue Star Strategies.”
“It seems highly unlikely that you had no idea of Hunter Biden’s association with Burisma while your wife was apparently coordinating with Hunter Biden to potentially connect you with Burisma’s U.S. representatives,” Johnson and Grassley wrote. “Because your testimony is inaccurate, Congress and the public must rely on your records as the source for information about your dealings with Hunter Biden.”
These revelations follow testimony from an ex-CIA official, who claimed that Blinken, during his time as a Biden campaign adviser, was the catalyst for the creation of a debunked letter from former intelligence officials that falsely claimed the Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation.