Former Biden family business partner Devon Archer told House lawmakers Monday that Ukrainian energy executives at Burisma hired Hunter Biden to develop the firm’s “brand” and intimidate potential opponents.
According to transcripts of the Capitol Hill interview released Thursday, Archer told members of the House Oversight Committee that Burisma might have gone under “if it didn’t have the brand attached to it.” Hunter Biden’s hiring, Archer said, contributed a network of high-powered political connections that kept the firm afloat.
“That’s my, like, honest opinion,” Archer explained.
Hunter Biden was showered with excessive compensation to serve on the corporate board of Burisma despite no prior experience in the energy industry. While Hunter Biden reportedly raked in upwards of $83,000 a month, his father was the Obama administration’s point man on Ukraine as vice president.
“I don’t understand,” said Rep. Dan Goldman, D-N.Y., pressing Archer on why hiring Hunter Biden would “have an impact.”
“Well, the capabilities to navigate D.C. that they were able to, you know, basically be in the news cycle,” Archer said. “I think that preserved them from a, you know, from a longevity standpoint.”
“But how would that work?” Goldman asked.
“Because people would be intimidated to mess with them,” Archer said.
“In what way?” Goldman pressed.
“Legally,” Archer said.
In 2018, Biden revealed why Burisma’s opponents might have been intimidated. The elder Biden bragged in a speech at the Council on Foreign Relations about how, as vice president, he pressured the Ukrainian government to fire a top prosecutor who was investigating the firm.
Archer told lawmakers Joe Biden spoke to his son’s associates at least 20 times, with Hunter Biden often placing his vice president father on speakerphone. Records indicate Joe Biden actually interacted with family business partners more than 200 times, contradicting Democrats’ denials of any involvement from 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023.
“I think at the end of the day, part of what was delivered is the brand,” Archer said. “I mean, it’s like anything, you know, if you’re Jamie Dimon’s son or any CEO. You know, I think that’s what we’re talking about, is that there was brand being delivered along with other capabilities and reach. … I think ‘brand’ is the best way to describe it.”
Archer expounded on the Biden family influence-peddling scheme in an interview with Tucker Carlson posted to Twitter on Wednesday.
“To be completely clear on the calls, I don’t know if it was an orchestrated call or not,” Archer said. “It certainly was powerful, though, because if you’re sitting with a foreign business person and you hear the vice president’s voice, that’s prize enough. That’s pretty impactful stuff for anyone.”
“The power to have that access in that conversation, and it’s not in a scheduled conference call, and it’s a part of your family, that’s like the pinnacle of power in D.C.,” Archer added.
The Archer transcripts highlight how Joe Biden was instrumental in his son’s overseas business dealings to enrich the family, but Democrats emerged from the Monday testimony claiming calls between the president and his son while rich Ukrainian oligarchs stood by were routine chats about the “weather.”