Several 2024 presidential contenders took aim at the “corrupt” and “partisan” Justice Department on Tuesday after it was revealed that Hunter Biden had secured a tentative federal plea deal following an investigation that resulted in a felony gun charge and two tax misdemeanors.
“Looks like Hunter received a sweetheart deal and is not facing any charges on the massive corruption allegations. If Hunter was not connected to the elite DC class he would have been put in jail a long time ago,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wrote in a tweet shortly after the plea deal was made public.
DeSantis’ tweet was accompanied by a video of him at a campaign event highlighting the “two different sets of rules” for Americans based on whether they’re in “good standing with elite society or not.”
From left, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Hunter Biden, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, former President Donald Trump (Paul Morigi | Allison Joyce/Anadolu Agency | Win McNamee | Scott Olson | Bing Guan/Bloomberg)
“If Hunter were a Republican, he would have been in jail years ago,” DeSantis said in the clip.
Under the agreement announced by U.S. Attorney for Delaware David Weiss Tuesday, Hunter Biden will plead guilty to two counts of willful failure to pay federal income tax. Biden also agreed to enter into a pretrial diversion agreement regarding a separate charge of possession of a firearm by a person who is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance.
Weiss’ office indicated that without a plea agreement, Hunter Biden would face a maximum penalty of 12 months in prison on each of the two tax charges, and a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison on the firearm charge. The deal still has to be approved by a judge. “A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors,” Weiss’ office said, adding that the investigation is “ongoing.”
Discussing the plea deal, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley insisted that it represents a “double standard of justice” in America.
“This plea deal only raises further questions about Hunter Biden’s crimes and the double standard of justice in our federal government,” Haley said in a statement to Fox. “There is clearly a lot more the Biden family has to answer for.”
Echoing Haley’s point, GOP presidential candidate Larry Elder said the plea deal between Hunter Biden and the DOJ further represents the “partisan justice system.”
Asked about the news Tuesday morning, Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. told Fox that he doesn’t “really know enough about it to be able to comment in any kind of helpful way.”
As for the bigger picture and whether he believes Hunter Biden could be an anchor on his father’s re-election campaign, Kennedy said: “I don’t know about that. I don’t think I have anything to add… I understand that families are big and complex, and we all have them. I’m going to let President Biden handle his own family issues.”
The U.S. Department of Justice on June 20, 2023, in Washington, D.C. (Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)
A source with knowledge of the Oct. 23, 2018, police report told Fox News that it indicated that Hallie Biden – the widow of President Biden’s late son, Beau – who was in a relationship with Hunter at the time, threw a gun owned by Hunter in a dumpster behind a market near a school.