One New York Democrat remains in denial over the reality of Hunter Biden’s laptop. Despite the last three years featuring multiple forensic analyses, federal investigations corroborating the hard drive’s authenticity, and even a tacit admission from the younger Biden himself, Rep. Dan Goldman still says the laptop was “manipulated” by Russian actors.
At Thursday’s House Judiciary hearing on the weaponization of the federal government, Goldman retreated to the debunked Democrat narrative that the laptop was an instrument of Russian disinformation.
“You are aware, of course, that the laptop, so to speak,” Goldman said, “was actually a hard drive that the New York Post admitted here was not authenticated as real.”
“It was not the laptop the FBI had. You’re aware of that, right?” Goldman asked.
One week after the New York Post’s first bombshell story revealing the Democratic presidential nominee had lied about contacts with his son’s business partners, Fox News revealed the FBI seized the laptop as part of a probe into money laundering. IRS whistleblower Gary Shapley told lawmakers this summer the FBI knew the laptop was authentic a year before the agency pressured major online platforms to suppress its content. The FBI even admitted to Twitter, now X, that the laptop was legitimate while demanding the California tech giant censor it.
The laptop obtained by the New York Post and investigated by the FBI, Shellenberger said, were “the same contents.”
“How do you know?” Goldman asked. “You would have to authenticate it to know it is the same contents. You have no idea. You know hard drives can be manipulated.”
“Are you suggesting the New York Post could participate in a conspiracy to construct the contents of the Hunter Biden laptop?” Shellenberger said.
“The problem,” Goldman replied, “is that hard drives can be manipulated by Rudy Giuliani or Russia.”
“You’re engaging in a conspiracy theory,” Shellenberger said.
President Joe Biden peddled the same conspiracy during the second and final debate with President Donald Trump days after the laptop surfaced from former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who gave the hard drive to the Post.
“Giuliani,” Biden said, “is being used as a Russian pawn. He is being fed information that is not true.”
Biden made the claim despite on-the-record statements denying Russian interference in the form of the laptop by the FBI, the Department of Justice, the Department of National Intelligence, and the State Department.
Goldman previously defended the FBI’s handling of the laptop at the last hearing with the House Weaponization Committee to feature Shellenberger in March. In this hearing, the New York congressman argued the FBI had no involvement with Twitter’s decision to suppress the New York Post’s stories surrounding the laptop. The agency’s effort to bury the computer in 2020 was the focus of the “Twitter Files: Part 7” by Shellenberger.
“Are you aware that the FBI had nothing to do with Twitter’s decision to pause the New York Post story?” Goldman asked.
“I am not aware of that,” Shellenberger said.
Goldman then read the Feb. 8 testimony from Yoel Roth, Twitter’s former head of safety, who denied the company’s censorship was the consequence of a federal censorship campaign. In his second round of questioning, Goldman argued the government giving companies “direction” was far from compulsory censorship.
“Mr. Shellenberger, in all of the emails that you reviewed, did the FBI ever direct Twitter to take down any accounts or remove any posts?” Goldman said.
“Yes,” Shellenberger said.