Most U.S. adults believe President Joe Biden’s involvement in his son’s shady foreign business deals was at least unscrupulous but may have chalked up to a crime.
Of the 1,163 adults surveyed in The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research’s October poll, 68 percent said they believed Biden’s role as the “brand” in his family’s pay-to-play overseas money-making scheme was unethical or illegal.
The poll comes just one month after AP-NORC declared that Americans are “sharply divided over whether Biden acted wrongly in son’s businesses,” in a write-up that even included a quote from a 60-year-old New York Democrat who claimed “there is no proof” that Biden did anything wrong.
At the time, AP-NORC did not dispute the comment. Its latest poll, however, shows most Americans understand that Biden, who repeatedly denied having knowledge of his son’s foreign business dealings, did in fact participate in the influence-peddling scheme that enriched his family by millions.
The Republicans surveyed by AP-NORC were far more willing to declare Biden guilty, with 96 percent answering that the funds the Biden family received from oligarchs in nearly two dozen foreign countries including China were likely dirty or criminal. Even 40 percent of Democrats, however, agreed that the president’s involvement in the deals and subsequent diluted payments was suspect if not illicit.
AP-NORC immediately tried to couch its findings by noting that only a third, 33 percent, of U.S. adults say they approve of House Republicans’ impeachment inquiry into Biden. The pollster conveniently glossed over the fact that 26 percent of those surveyed said they neither approved nor disapproved of the impeachment.
AP-NORC also went to great lengths to note that its October 2019 poll, which asked Americans to weigh in on whether former President Donald Trump’s infamous phone call to Ukraine was unlawful and iniquitous, found similar levels of suspicion as its Biden-focused survey.
The difference between the 68 percent of U.S. adults who think Biden did wrong and the 67 percent of U.S. adults who held Trump liable is that evidence abounds implicating Biden in exchanging political favors to line his family’s pockets, while evidence that Trump exchanged political favors with a corrupt foreign government was nonexistent.
The allegedly damning call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that AP-NORC asked Americans’ opinions about in 2019 showed no “quid pro quo.” The lack of evidence eventually led to the failure of Democrats’ show-trial impeachment, which hinged on the phone call as proof of “high crimes and misdemeanors.”
On the other hand, evidence that the Bidens leveraged Joe’s vice presidential power to engage in multimillion-dollar deals — including an apparent bribery scheme with the Ukrainian energy firm his son Hunter worked for — is corroborated by IRS whistleblowers, Biden business associates, banks, the FBI, and even Biden himself.