President Joe Biden spoke for the first time Tuesday about his son’s exposure to possible criminal charges for allegedly lying on a gun application, but he said he was proud of Hunter Biden for confronting his struggles with drug addiction in an interview with Jake Braves that were sent. on “CNN Tonight.”
Hunter Biden bought a gun at a time when he has now acknowledged that he struggled with substance abuse — an issue that is now under federal criminal investigation because federal law requires buyers to certify that they are not users of or addicted to illegal drugs, CNN has reported. Federal prosecutors are weighing possible charges related to tax violations and making a false statement in connection with the gun purchase, CNN reported.
President Biden told Tapper on Tuesday that he was “proud” of Hunter Biden for being forthright about his struggle with drug addiction.
“This is a kid who became — not a child, he’s a grown man — he became addicted to drugs that many families have been through. He’s overcome that. He’s established a new life,” Biden said.
“I’m confident that he’s — what he’s saying and doing is consistent with what’s happening,” the president said. “And for example, he wrote a book about his problems and was straightforward about it. I am proud of him.”
The case against Hunter Biden narrowed earlier this year and was a matter of discussion in early summer between FBI and IRS investigators, Delaware prosecutors and the Justice Department, CNN previously reported. The discussions included assessing the strength of the case and questioning whether more work was needed before deciding whether to prosecute. Prosecutors and investigators have argued they have enough evidence to file charges, but a decision on charges rests with Delaware’s U.S. Attorney David Weiss and is expected after the midterm elections.
An attorney for Hunter Biden did not immediately comment.
In the CNN interview on Tuesday, the president defended his son.
“This thing with a gun – I didn’t know anything about that. But it turns out that when he applied to buy a gun, what happened was he – I think you’re asked – I don’t think you’re asked a question, are you on drugs or do you use drugs?’ He said no. And he wrote about saying no in his book,” Biden said.
“So I have a lot of confidence in my son,” he continued. “I love him, and he’s on the same level, and he’s been for a couple of years now. And I’m just so proud of him.”
The White House has consistently declined to comment on the Hunter Biden investigation, saying it is a matter for the Justice Department. But Republicans and conservative media have focused on the issue, which could become the subject of congressional investigations should Republicans take control of Congress after this year’s midterm elections.
Biden told Tapper that his focus right now is on November’s congressional contests. But he said that once these elections are concluded, he would enter the decision-making process about his own political future.
“I’m not going to make this about my decision. I’m going to make this about this off-year election. After it’s done in November, then I’m in the process of making up my mind,” Biden said.
Biden, who turns 80 on Nov. 20, has consistently brushed aside questions about his age, suggesting his performance as president speaks for itself.
He has said he intends to run for re-election. But he notes that he respects fate and has suggested that he will discuss the matter with his family and make a decision early next year.
In polls, a majority of Democrats say they do not want Biden to run for re-election in 2024. A CNN poll from July found that 75% of Democratic and Democratic-led voters wanted the party to nominate someone else, a strong increase from earlier in the year. Of those, 17% said they wanted another nominee because of Biden’s age.
“They’re worried about whether or not I can do anything. Look at what I’ve gotten done. Name me a president in recent history who got as much done as I did in the first two years. Not a joke. You may not like what I got done, but the vast majority of the American people like what I got done,” he said.
“It’s a question of, can you do the job? And I believe I can do the job. I have been able to do the job,” he continued.
When Tapper asked if one of his calculations in deciding whether to run for re-election was whether “you think you’re the only one who can beat Donald Trump,” Biden gave a terse answer: “I think I can beat Donald Trump again.” he said.