Joe Biden had plans to join a law and consultancy firm with his sons Hunter and Beau, emails reveal.
Hunter discussed the proposed firm in a November 2014 email with his business partner and Biden family friend Jeff Cooper, a lawyer and entrepreneur.
The plans were thwarted by Beau’s tragic death in 2015 from brain cancer, setting the whole family on a drastically different path.
Had Beau not passed away, the emails suggest that Joe Biden might have quit politics and entered the DC ‘swamp’ of politically-tied lawyers and highly-paid consultants and lobbyists – a world he has decried in speeches.
The email also raises questions over the president’s claim that he never discussed business with Hunter.
Emails obtaned by Hunter Biden’s laptop show Joe Biden planned to join a law and consultancy firm with his sons Hunter (left) and Beau (right)
Hunter discussed the proposed firm in a November 2014 email with his business partner and Biden family friend Jeff Cooper
This claim has come under increasing scrutiny after emails from Hunter’s abandoned laptop revealed multiple instances where Joe appeared to be involved in business meetings relating to Hunter – both during his tenure as vice president and after he left office.
A now-infamous email between Hunter and his business partners in a multi-million-dollar deal with Chinese oil giant CEFC, consultant James Gilliar set out potential terms of the deal and listed ’10 held by H for the big guy?’
The email also raises questions over the president’s claim that he never discussed business with Hunter
The mysterious phrase from the May 2017 message has been interpreted as a proposal for Hunter to hold 10% of the shares in the joint venture on behalf of his father, who is referred to as ‘the big guy’ in several other emails on the laptop.
The president has denied this interpretation.
Other emails show Joe attended a private dinner with Hunter and his business partners and potential clients while he was vice president.
Hunter wrote to a friend before the 2015 Washington DC dinner that it was ‘ostensibly to discuss food security’, but was in fact an opportunity to introduce his potential clients and partners to his powerful father.
This month DailyMail.com revealed Hunter arranged White House and vice presidential residence meetings with his father for two Mexican billionaires with whom he was planning multi-million-dollar business ventures – and that Joe took Hunter and his business partner on Air Force 2 to Mexico amid those deals.
And last month DailyMail.com revealed that former FBI director Louis Freeh, who represented a criminal Romanian property tycoon alongside Hunter, spoke with Joe while the VP was still in office about the Biden father and son joining his consultancy firm in 2017.
The White House has failed to respond to DailyMail.com’s questions about any of the incidents.
Hunter discussed his proposed new Biden family company in an email with Cooper dated November 20, 2014, with the title ‘Firm’.
He set out ‘ball park’ annual overheads for the consultancy shop totaling $1.2 million including a $500,000 salary for his brother Beau.
His other estimates included $250,000 for a senior attorney, $175,000 for a junior attorney, $65,000 for an administrative assistant and $20,000 per month for ‘office and other expenses’.
The plans were thwarted by Beau’s tragic death in 2015 from brain cancer. The family are pictured at Beau’s funeral
Joe Biden entertained Mexican billionaires Carlos Slim and Miguel Alemán Velasco – his son Hunter’s business associates – in the vice president’s office in 2014
While Hunter and Biden family friend Jeff Cooper (far left) were working on their business plans, they managed to get the billionaires Slim, Velasco and Magnani a private ‘meeting’ with then-vice president Joe Biden in the VP’s office. Photos on Hunter’s laptop dated November 19, 2015, show the six men smiling at a meeting in Joe Biden’s DC residence. Emails show the men also met Joe at the White House
Cooper replied asking if Beau, referred to in the email as ‘BB’, could ‘offset the 500k by sitting on a few Boards etc’, and if Hunter had ‘any guesses on built-in clients for the firm?’
‘Hadn’t thought about boards- any ideas?’ Hunter replied to Cooper, adding that he worried $500,000 wouldn’t be enough for Beau.
Hunter indicated that he would not only have Beau on board in the new venture, but his father too – referring to them both by ‘JRB’
‘My main concern is that he has at least that much income guaranteed for two years. He’s been offered that by Stuart Grant in return for joining his firm and being available to Stuart for client development.’
Grant is a prominent Wilmington litigator, entrepreneur and Democratic Party fundraiser.
Beau ended up joining Grant’s firm in the months before he died, after he left office as Delaware attorney general in 2015.
‘We could probably go as low as 350 but there are some real costs associated with upcoming treatments not covered by insurance,’ Hunter continued in the November 2014 email.
‘At the outset we probably wouldn’t need the junior attorney until things really started rolling. As for built in clients I think that will depend on who we get as ‘senior attorney.’
‘I don’t want to have to ‘partner’ with an existing firm (like another Bifferato deal), but like the idea of a relatively senior lawyer coming with some clients and the promise of revenue sharing or upside.’
Hunter then indicated that he would not only have Beau on board in the new venture, but his father too – referring to them both by ‘JRB’, the initials of their full names, Joseph Robinette Biden Jr and Joseph Robinette Biden III.
‘In order to develop this as a platform for both JRBs I think it is imperative we (the three of us) have full control come 2016 when JRB1 comes on board,’ Hunter wrote.
Cooper, who was planning the new firm with Hunter, had close ties with the Biden family for years.
The men reportedly met through their wives: Francesca Cooper went to high school with Hunter’s first wife Kathleen Biden.
His Illinois law firm, asbestos claim litigation specialists SimmonsCooper, worked with Beau’s Delaware law firm on dozens of cases.
It also bankrolled Hunter and Joe’s brother Jim’s unsuccessful attempt to buy a hedge fund in 2006.
Texts from Hunter to his daughter Naomi in 2019 show he complained about having to give Joe half of his salary. He also threatened to never give her a ‘dime’ again
The texts about AT&T were from 2018 – when Joe Biden had earned more than $11million
By 2008 SimmonsCooper was Joe Biden’s number one donor, giving $200,000 over the previous eight years.
The large donations, and thousands more to Beau’s political campaigns, drew scrutiny when Joe, in his role as chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, helped block an asbestos reform.
The reform would have jeopardized SimmonsCooper’s business, and the firm lobbied him over the issue.
At the time, a spokesman for Joe told the Los Angeles Times that all the SimmonsCooper business deals with his sons and brother were above board, and no special favors were arranged.
Even deeper financial ties between the president and his son were revealed this month, when emails and texts from Hunter’s laptop emerged showing that he paid many of his father’s bills.
Hunter complained that ‘half’ of his salary went to paying his father’s bills while he was Vice President, casting doubt on Joe’s previous claims that he has never benefited from his son’s business dealings.
The bills included a $190-a-month AT&T phone bill and thousands in repairs on Joe’s lakeside home in Wilmington.
The payments were described in a 2010 email, when Joe Biden was earning $225,000-a-year as Vice President. He had already made well over $100,000-a-year for decades prior as a senator and author.
In 2010 emails between Hunter and Eric Schwerin, his business partner at consultancy firm Rosemont Seneca, they discussed how much they needed to spend paying Joe’s bills.
The email subject was ‘JRB bills’ – which match Joe’s initials – and described how $2,600 was to be paid to a contractor for a ‘stone retaining wall’ at Joe’s home, along with $1,475 to be paid to a painter for the ‘back wall and columns’ of the property and $1,239 to a builder who’d fixed the AC at Joe’s late mother’s home.
He rented that house to the Secret Service for $2,200 a month.
Years later, in a text to his own daughter, Hunter – who had by then been battling drug addiction for years – he complained: ‘I hope you all can do what I did and pay for everything for this entire family for 30 years.
‘It’s really hard. But don’t worry, unlike Pop [Joe], I won’t make you give me half your salary.’
It was a text he sent to his daughter Naomi in 2019.
In a June 2010 email, Schwerin wrote to Hunter: ‘FYI, there are a few outstanding bills that need to be paid and I am not sure which ones are a priority and which should get paid out of ‘my’ account and which should be put on hold or paid out of the ‘Wilmington Trust Social Security Check Account.
‘There is about $2,000 extra in ‘my’ account beyond what is used for monthly expenses.’
It is unclear why he put the word my in quotation marks.
In 2010 emails between Hunter and Eric Schwerin, his business partner at consultancy firm Rosemont Seneca, they discussed how much they needed to spend paying Joe’s bills
In another email the same month, Schwerin said: ‘Mike Christopher [builder] is hassling me so I am paying a couple of the smaller things since I haven’t heard from your Dad. Know he’s busy — so it’s OK.
‘But if you think he has a moment or two to review the e-mail I sent you let me know.’
The following month, Schwerin said: ‘Does it make sense to see if your Dad has some time in the next couple of weeks while you are in DC to talk about it? Your Dad just called me about his mortgage . . . so it dawned on me to might be a good time [for] some positive news about his future earnings potential.’
In the years after he left office as Vice President, Joe and Jill Biden made millions through book deals and speaking engagements.
In 2017 alone, the couple declared $11.1 million in earnings – more than double they had made in any other year for 18 years prior. Joe has always insisted the money was earned above board.
In a 2018 email to one of his own assistants, Hunter complained that he had been shut out of his own bank account and that his father had been using it.
‘Too many cooks in the kitchen. Too many profile changes and such. Happened 10 days ago too…
‘My dad has been using most lines on this account which I’ve through the gracious offerings of Eric have paid for past 11 years,’ he said.