By golly, it’s not taking long to get back to business as usual in the Joe Biden era. And by business, we mean family business. Howard Krein has taken a page out of the playbook used by Hunter, James, and Frank Biden and decided to trade on his father-in-law’s influence, ABC News reports:
When the boutique tech firm Yosi Health developed software aimed at streamlining the nation’s coronavirus vaccine effort, CEO Hari Prasad sought help from one of its earliest investors — a company with a special government connection.
The investor was StartUp Health, and that special connection came through its chief medical officer, Howard Krein, who is married to President Joe Biden’s daughter.
That detail that was not lost on Yosi’s Prasad, who reached out to StartUp Health in December with a request to introduce their platform to government health officials.
“Our goal with StartUp Health is to leverage their relationships and work with state and federal agencies,” he explained in an interview with ABC News.
That already has ethicists at least taking notice of the close connections. One group warns that Krein’s proximity to the White House could leave all the Bidens burned:
‘Howard Krein is playing with fire,’ Meredith McGehee, the executive director of Issue One, a nonpartisan ethics watchdog group, told ABC News. ‘If he gets too close to that flame — if he is trying to either cash in on his relationship with the president, or he is trying to influence policy — the flame is going to get him. And it is not worth it to him or to Biden.’
So far, it hasn’t burned anyone but Hunter, and that might be more about Hunter’s other activities than just cashing in on Dad’s authority. His uncles James and Frank have managed to keep the money coming in without attracting attention from law enforcement.
Krein might find it a bit more uncomfortable, however, and so might the new president:
The president has been a supporter of the business Krein started with his brother Steven Krein and tech entrepreneur Unity Stoakes, appearing at corporate conferences and inviting the company’s executives to the White House to meet former President Barack Obama.
Krein also began advising his father-in-law during the campaign in the spring, playing an unofficial role in developing pandemic response plans.
The relationship drew scrutiny at the time because StartUp Health was trying to invest in companies working on products to be used in responding to the coronavirus.
With Biden now in the White House, the questions are getting renewed attention amid the potential for ethical blunders.
The “potential” for ethical blunders? Krein joined the campaign in the spring, and by December his partners were already hitting up the transition for business. We’re beyond “potential” at this point, and into the “playing with fire” stage. Given the lack of media interest in making Joe Biden look bad, it might take a lot before Krein or any of the Bidens beside Hunter get to the “burned” stage, of course, but this ain’t just smoke coming from Biden Inc. Kudos to ABC for its work here, but don’t hold your breath for follow-ups from other media outlets in the days ahead. We’re getting back to “normal” in more ways than one.