Obama Ethics Chief Says Hunter Biden's Art Has a 'Shameful, Grifty Feeling to It'
Hunter set to rake in $500,000 for large-scale paintings
Joe Biden's son, Hunter Biden, has a colorful history of using his family's name to achieve success that is arguably underserved.
Former President Barack Obama's ethics chief slammed Hunter's lucrative art scheme saying it will be more of the same.
Former Office of Government Ethics director Walter Shaub blasted "corrupt" plans to sell Hunter's art for as much as $500,000.
“The notion of a president’s son capitalizing on that relationship by selling art at obviously inflated prices and keeping the public in the dark about who’s funneling money to him has a shameful and grifty feel to it,” he said.
Earlier this month, ArtNet.com reported that Biden had hired Georges Bergès as his art dealer.
Bergès is setting up a private art show in Los Angeles where prices for Biden's artwork are expected to “range from $75,000 for works on paper to $500,000 for large-scale paintings.”
Shaub said Hunter Biden’s last name is being used to inflate the value of his work.
“He can’t possibly think anyone is paying him based on the quality of the art,” Shaub said, according to Fox News.
“This smells like an attempt to cash in on a family connection to the White House.”
But it's not the fits time Biden has been accused of profiting from his father’s name.
Biden came under fire in 2019 while he was a board member at the Ukrainian-based company Burisma Holdings Ltd.
Donald Trump also accused Joe Biden of facilitating Hunter in profiting from his position at Burisma.
Many critics argued Hunter was in no way qualified for the position, and he only scored the gig because of his family name.
Shaub also raised other concerns about Biden’s new art career.
He noted buyers off Biden’s art would be able to remain anonymous.
Shaub said such anonymity could allow “influence-seekers” to send 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 the American public “should not have to take it on blind faith that government officials will behave.”
He called on Bergès to disclose the names of the buyers to reduce the chances of others covertly influencing the Biden administration.
Bergès himself has a questionable past.
The New York Post reported he was arrested in 1998 and charged with assault with a deadly weapon.
He was also accused of making “terrorist threats,” a charge that was later dismissed.
Bergès past raises red flags when coupled with Hunter's past, given the fact they are now facilitating massive sales that could have further implications within the White House.
An agency called The Townsend Group defdned Bergès's right to keep the buyers of Biden’s art anonymous.
“Pricing fine art in his experiences as a Gallerist is based on the demand of the work as well and the intrinsic value of it,” they told Fox Business last week.
“His feeling is that within each piece – as with every artist, sales are always confidential to protect the privacy of the collector.
"This is standard practice for transactions in galleries as well as auction houses.”