Politico Playbook: Hey, the Hunter-laptop story was legit after all

Politico Playbook: Hey, the Hunter-laptop story was legit after all
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, Pool

The deuce you say. Maybe the rest of the national media shouldn’t have rushed to bury the story of Hunter Biden’s laptop in the first place, huh? A new book from a Politico reporter belatedly clears the decks for a reassessment of the Bidens, especially Hunter and his nexus between powerful interests and “the big guy”:

FIRST IN PLAYBOOK — Ben Schreckinger’s “The Bidens: Inside the First Family’s Fifty-Year Rise to Power,” out today, finds evidence that some of the purported HUNTER BIDEN laptop material is genuine, including two emails at the center of last October’s controversy.

A person who had independent access to Hunter Biden’s emails confirmed he did receive a 2015 email from a Ukrainian businessman thanking him for the chance to meet Joe Biden. The same goes for a 2017 email in which a proposed equity breakdown of a venture with Chinese energy executives includes the line, “10 held by H for the big guy?” (This person recalled seeing both emails, but was not in a position to compare the leaked emails word-for-word to the originals.)

MORE: Emails released by a Swedish government agency also match emails in the leaked cache, and two people who corresponded with Hunter Biden confirmed emails from the cache were genuine.

Gee, just imagine if the national media had taken an interest in asking these questions eleven months ago. Instead, not only did these outlets immediately dismiss the Hunter-laptop story as fake news, social media platforms began blocking any discussion of it — to the point of suspending the New York Post’s Twitter accounts. Facebook not only suppressed it, but bragged about creating an algorithm to automatically suppress it. We’ll get back to that point in the end.

In fairness, Schreckinger had been among the few journalists to cast a critical eye on the Bidens and their fortunes, literal and figurative. I believe he coined the term “Biden Inc” to describe the cashing-in strategies of Hunter and his uncles on connections made by Joe Biden in his political capacities. That began in earnest two months before the Post’s stories about Hunter’s laptop, although Schreckinger had begun this thread in March with James Biden’s Americore health-industry cash-in.

National media outlets had plenty of context regarding corruption issues within Biden Inc before the NY Post revealed the contents of Hunter’s laptop. Had they bothered to pay a fraction of the attention Schreckinger did to those corruption issues, the laptop story would have made much more sense. (As it did to those of us who had paid attention to Biden Inc.) Instead, they practically broke their figurative ankles in a rush to bury the story, perhaps out of political bias, or perhaps out of embarrassment for having been caught napping on the story. Maybe it was a blend of both.

And now we find out, thanks to Schreckinger again, that the details in the core laptop story could have been confirmed if anyone had bothered to ask. That prompts the question I just asked — why didn’t national news outlets bother to ask? The answer, one presumes, is that they preferred a corrupt Biden to a cantankerous Trump. That’s a legitimate choice for voters, but it’s an unconscionable ethical violation for a free press.

That’s the point that Glenn Greenwald is making today on this revelation:

Funny about that, eh?

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