National Security

FBI Director Admits Hunter Biden Payments Could Be Part Of ‘Malign Foreign Influence’ Campaign

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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FBI Director Christopher Wray said during a Thursday Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that payments from China and other countries to Americans like Hunter Biden could be part of a “malign foreign influence” campaign.

Committee ranking member Chuck Grassley of Iowa and former Senate Homeland Security Committee chairman Ron Johnson of Wisconsin have been conducting an investigation of Hunter Biden’s international business dealings. The sole surviving son of President Joe Biden previously sat on the board of a Ukrainian energy company, drawing a six-figure salary, and more recently conducted natural gas deals with his uncle Jim Biden and a Chinese Communist Party-controlled entity.

Grassley asked Wray whether or not Hunter Biden’s drawn salary could constitute an intelligence risk, an assessment with which Wray agreed. Grassley did not name Hunter Biden directly, referring to him as a “politically-exposed person.” (RELATED: GOP Senators Demand Intelligence Records On Hunter Biden’s Dealings With Chinese Energy Conglomerate)

“If the FBI received information that foreign persons had evidence of improper or unlawful financial payments to elected officials or other politically-exposed persons, would that pose a national security concern?” Grassley asked.

“Well I think the kind of conduct you’re describing is typically something that very closely, through our efforts at malign foreign influence, it starts to shade into a blend of what we call malign foreign influence with potential public corruption. And it’s something we take seriously,” Wray said.


Republicans in both chambers of Congress have suggested that the Biden family’s business dealings could constitute a national security risk. Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz directly asked an assistant attorney general whether or not Biden is personally a “national security threat,” and a report released in 2020 by Grassley and Johnson found at least one Obama administration official warned that the Burisma position “could create the perception of a conflict of interest.”

When he was vice president, Joe Biden met with several of Hunter Biden’s business partners. James Gilliar, a business associate of Hunter Biden’s, questioned whether or not ten percent of Oneida Holdings, a joint venture with CEFC China Energy, would be held by Hunter “for the big guy.” Tony Bobulinski, another business partner, corroborated that “the big guy” referred to Joe Biden.

Hunter Biden requested keys to his office be made for his father and stepmother, Jill Biden, in 2017. He referred to them, along with CEFC representative Gongwen Dong, as his “office mates.”