Former Dem Senator Goes on TV, Breaks Down Defending Hunter Biden: ‘Back Off!’
On Tuesday, Hunter Biden — a man who was facing down criminal allegations that have sent less-connected defendants to prison for years — agreed to a sweetheart deal with federal prosecutors in which he’ll only have to plead guilty to misdemeanor tax and gun charges.
This, naturally, attracted the ire of Republicans, who noted that while Attorney General Merrick Garland and his Department of Justice are engaged in multifarious witch-hunts against conservatives and conservative causes — including having a special counsel indict President Joe Biden’s top political rival — they don’t seem to be incredibly interested in the fact that the president’s son didn’t pay taxes on income he earned primarily from grifting off his last name and lied on a federal firearms form to illegally obtain a gun while he was a drug-fueled wreck.
But to all of those who smell something rotten in the residence of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., a teary-eyed former Democrat senator has a message for you: “Back off!”
“I don’t know what America they live in. And I don’t know how they sleep at night,” McCaskill said in an interview on MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House.”
“Alcoholism and addiction are probably the most pervasive diseases in America. I don’t know of one family that hasn’t been touched by the pain of these diseases. And it’s particularly painful when you have someone you love unconditionally that is suffering from these diseases,” she continued.
“I think Joe Biden has shown a wonderful role model to the country about unconditional love. What do these jerks in the House want Joe Biden to do? Throw him out? Refuse to speak to him? Say he doesn’t love him publicly? Do they not understand this disease and how it works?”
I dunno, perhaps the Big Guy might have requested that his son take responsibility for not paying taxes in 2017 and 2018 and lying on a federal background check form to purchase a firearm — which, according to Reuters, is what he pleaded guilty to on Tuesday.
While the specifics of the tax cases were a bit hazy, the gun charge was straightforward: Biden said on the form that he was not an addict or user of illegal or controlled substances when he purchased the weapon; in his autobiography, he confirmed that during this period, he was a crack-and-alcohol-addled mess. Addiction or not, it’s a crime to lie on a form to get a gun you don’t have the legal right to purchase.
And it’s a crime other defendants — who aren’t the son of the president — have gone to prison for.
However, McCaskill — looking every bit like she was on the edge of an emotional breakdown — said Hunter Biden “has gone through recovery under the brightest lights imaginable, and recovery is not easy for anybody. I—he’s being held accountable for bad judgments he made, and he should be. But the point is that he now has to stay sober in order to avoid a felony. And he has been treated as he should under the law.
“Everyone should understand here that this man, this has paid a very high price for his addiction in the public arena,” McCaskill said. “And by the way, everybody needs to back off Joe Biden about this. He loves his son. Back off!
“It is OK for him to love his son. And there’s nothing wrong with it. They have no evidence of any kind of wrongdoing by Joe Biden, and it infuriates me that they’re using this heartbreak against Joe Biden in this way. It’s just not right.”
As misguided, impassioned defenses of questionable characters go, this isn’t exactly “Leave Britney Alone” — but McCaskill was, not too long ago, a member of the Senate; she lost her seat in 2018, during the Trump administration.
(During that campaign, she attempted to appeal to Show Me state voters by claiming she wasn’t one of the “crazy Democrats.” She’s showing otherwise, now.)
I know, I know, we play the switcharoo game quite frequently as conservatives and it gets us nowhere, but it does lay bare how idiotic McCaskill’s defense — which was materially similar to what other Democrats are saying, just more needlessly emotive — really is.
Say any one of the Trump kids was a wastoid polysubstance addict who didn’t pay his taxes and lied about his sobriety to obtain a firearm. Let’s also say he was shown fooling around with the firearm during a romp with a prostitute, as pictures on Hunter’s laptop show. Would this be the tune Claire McCaskill would be singing: a paean to Donald Trump’s fatherly love in getting his addicted son help as the Department of Justice, which just happens to be under his direct control, gave him a sweetheart plea deal?
You can be sober as a Tibetan monk or as blasted as Hunter S. Thompson. The law still requires you to be responsible for your actions. Can addiction be considered a mitigating factor? Sure. Can it make crimes just go away? No, in italics.
And, as former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy noted in a piece at National Review, this plea deal was unusually generous.
“Under Justice Department policy, even with a plea agreement, the government is supposed to seek a plea to the ‘most serious,’ readily provable ‘offense that is consistent with the nature and full extent of the defendant’s conduct,’” McCarthy noted.
“Hunter Biden committed tax offenses that could have been charged as evasion, which is punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment for each count. Furthermore, he made a false statement that enabled him to obtain a firearm; that’s a ten-year felony under legislation pushed through by then-senator Joe Biden to show how very serious Democrats are about gun crime.
“Biden apologists have tried to minimize that transaction as a ‘lie and try’ case, which they say is often not prosecuted. But such non-prosecution (though it shouldn’t happen) occurs because of what you’d infer from the ‘try’ part — i.e., the liar got caught and failed to obtain the gun. Hunter’s case, to the contrary, is a lie and succeed case. He got the gun.” [Emphasis in the original.]
And yet, he got no jail time. But no matter: Back off, wicked Republicans! How dare you demand Hunter Biden be sent to prison for being an addict? And, um, the other stuff he did. But forget about that.
This is all about addiction, as far as Claire McCaskill is concerned. And if you don’t drop it immediately, she’s really going to let the tears loose.
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