GOP Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., says that Hunter Biden’s sales of high-end artwork sold to anonymous buyers reeks with hypocrisy and conflicts of interests among Democrats.
“The White House needs to be transparent. We’ve asked some valid questions that I don’t think anyone in their right mind would consider partisan, especially when you consider the questions the Democrats on the Oversight Committee asked about the Trump children when the Trump children were involved in the real estate business decades before Donald Trump ever ran for president,” Comer said.
“No sensible American would believe that Hunter Biden is, first of all, a desired pick to be on a board of a foreign national company, nor would they believe he is an artist who would command a half a million dollars for a piece of artwork,” he continued.
“This doesn’t pass the smell test.”
Comer continued: “This goes along with a pattern of conflicts of interest that we’ve seen with Hunter Biden and other members of the Biden family, and we’re asking questions.”
Former Obama administration Director of Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub says that Hunter Biden selling art at “obviously inflated prices” to anonymous buyers feels “gritty.”
Shaub warned about the risk of “influence-seekers funneling money to the Biden family.”
Anonymity allows outside influence
The White House orchestrated a deal to keep the buyers and potential buyers of Hunter Biden’s artwork to remain anonymous.
The artwork will be sold at a fall show, with prices for the first-time artist ranging from $75,000 to $500,000.
Richard Painter, a law professor at the University of Minnesota, said that the lack of transparency surrounding potential buyers is concerning.
“I’m not very happy about it, and I would have done it differently,” Painter said. “The core principle here is transparency. Any arrangement where things are kept secret, people just don’t trust.”
Painter previously worked as a chief White House ethics lawyer during the George W. Bush administration.
Shaub warned that the ability to remain anonymous could allow influence-seekers to funnel money to the Biden family.
“Just as hotel charges and real estate purchases created a risk of unknown parties funneling money to the Trump family for potentially unsavory purposes, Hunter Biden’s grotesquely inflated art prices create a similar risk of influence-seekers funneling money to the Biden family,” Shaub said.
Shaub said he believes that Hunter Biden and his art dealer, Georges Berges, should disclose the identity of the art purchasers so the public can judge for themselves.
The public “should not have to take it on blind faith that government officials will behave. At a minimum, the president should be asking his son not to go through with this auction,” he added.