Shall we play a game of pick the real criminal? Come on, it will be fun. On the one hand, we have a 77-year-old man, a former president and a billionaire, whose Gollum-like greed caused him to hoard various boxes of classified documents which he should have returned to the proper authorities. He, or his associates, also fudged various business records possibly to cover up ‘hush money’ payments he made to a porn star. Oh, and he had a massive tantrum about losing an election, tried to overturn the result, and his shenanigans caused some of his supporters to breach the Capitol building in Washington on 6 January, 2021.
On the other, we have a 53-year-old man, the multi-millionaire son of a president, a recovering crack addict with a fondness for prostitutes, waving guns around, sleeping with his late brother’s widow, and making amateur pornography. He used his father’s name and political influence to launch an investment fund that cut deals with shady foreign actors – possibly enriching his father, the then vice-president, in the process. He also got absurdly well-paid for sitting on the board of a Ukrainian energy company at a time when daddy was supposed to be conducting American diplomacy in the country. After falling from grace, he reinvented himself as a painter and now flogs his godawful paintings to unknown buyers for hundreds of thousands of dollars.
So – who do you chose? Who would you throw in jail? Donald J Trump, the prez, or Robert ‘Hunter’ Biden, the princeling?
How you answer will probably depend on your political leanings. A lot of Democrats and independents believe that Trump is a direct threat to democracy and therefore locking him up is in the national interest. At the same time, plenty of Republicans and independents think it highly suspicious that Hunter Biden seems to have just escaped with the judicial equivalent of a slap on the wrist – despite the fact he appears to be guilty of quite serious criminality.