Johnson, Grassley Use Secret Service Records to Verify Content from Alleged Hunter Biden Laptop, Request More Travel Records

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, sent a letter Tuesday to United States Secret Service Director James Murray highlighting references to Hunter Biden’s travel from recently published emails that appear to align with Secret Service records previously produced to the committees. The chairmen have also requested records to verify whether the Secret Service traveled with Hunter Biden after he apparently discontinued his protective detail.

“USSS records indicate that Hunter Biden’s first scheduled trip as a Secret Service protectee was January 29, 2009 to New York City. USSS informed the Committees that Hunter Biden declined USSS protection after a scheduled July 8, 2014 trip to Michigan City, Indiana,” the senators wrote. “However, another recently published email chain referenced travel plans for Mr. Biden involving USSS one year after Mr. Biden’s protection apparently ended. … It appears that USSS was planning to travel with Mr. Biden in August 2015, which would have been well after the USSS reported to the Committees that Mr. Biden ended his protection.”

The full text of the letter can be found below and can be viewed here.

Chairman Johnson’s and Chairman Grassley’s report detailing Hunter Biden’s scheduled travel as a Secret Service protectee can be found on page 31 here.

 

October 20, 2020

 

Mr. James M. Murray

Director

United States Secret Service

Dear Mr. Murray:

On February 5, 2020, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and the Senate Committee on Finance (“the Committees”) requested United States Secret Service (“USSS”) records of “all the dates and locations of travel, international and domestic, for Hunter Biden while he received a protective detail.”[1]  As detailed in the Committees’ September 23, 2020 report titled, “Hunter Biden, Burisma, and Corruption: The Impact on U.S. Government Policy and Related Concerns,” USSS records indicate that Hunter Biden’s first scheduled trip as a Secret Service protectee was January 29, 2009 to New York City.  USSS informed the Committees that Hunter Biden declined USSS protection after a scheduled July 8, 2014 trip to Michigan City, Indiana.[2]

Recent reports have published emails allegedly belonging to Hunter Biden, some of which include references to Mr. Biden’s travel.[3]  As the Committees continue to assess the validity of these emails, Committee staff have found that several of the references to Mr. Biden’s travel align with the travel records USSS produced to the Committees.  For example, in one email allegedly sent from Hunter Biden to Devon Archer on April 13, 2014 at 12:43 AM, Mr. Biden referred to traveling to Houston “tmrw.”[4]  Secret Service records show a travel entry for Mr. Biden from April 13, 2014 – April 14, 2014, to Houston, TX.[5]  In another published email, Burisma official Vadim Pozharskyi allegedly wrote to Mr. Biden and Mr. Archer on May 12, 2014 at 8:29 AM. Mr. Pozharskyi wrote, “Following our talks during the visit to the Como Lake and our further discussions, I would like to bring the following situation to your attention.”[6]  Although this email did not provide a specific date for the “visit to the Como Lake,” USSS records show a travel entry for Hunter Biden to Lake Como, Italy, on April 3, 2014 – April 6, 2014.[7]  Other reports also indicate that, in May 2014, Mr. Biden and Mr. Archer may have been in Doha, Qatar.[8]  USSS records contain a travel entry for Hunter Biden to Doha, Qatar on May 11, 2014 – May 14, 2014.[9]

These emails concern Mr. Biden’s travel prior to July 2014, a period of time when Mr. Biden received USSS protection.  However, another recently published email chain referenced travel plans for Mr. Biden involving USSS one year after Mr. Biden’s protection apparently ended.  In a late July 2015 email chain, Mr. Pozharskyi, Mr. Biden, and Rosemont Seneca employees Katie Dodge and Joan Mayer allegedly discussed plans for Mr. Biden to travel to Europe between August 2, 2015 and August 6, 2015.  In that email chain, Ms. Mayer asked Mr. Pozharskyi, “Secret Service is wondering how many seats would be available for them on the charter flight from Paris to Norway?  They would prefer 2 if that is at all possible.”[10]  Mr. Pozharskyi responded, “We can definitely make room for 2 SS agents on board, no problem at all.”  Two days later, Ms. Mayer wrote, “Are the tickets booked?  SS needs Hunters’s [sic] seat numbers as well.”  Based on this email chain, it appears that USSS was planning to travel with Mr. Biden in August 2015, which would have been well after the USSS reported to the Committees that Mr. Biden ended his protection. 

As part of the Committees’ efforts to validate these recently-published emails allegedly belonging to Hunter Biden, and in order to resolve any apparent discrepancies with USSS’s prior response to the Committees, we request the following information and records:

 

  1. Does USSS have any Hunter Biden travel records from August 2015?  If so, please provide them to the Committees.
  2. Did any USSS agents accompany Hunter Biden on travel after July 2014?  If so, please provide those records and explain why those records were not produced to the Committees in response to the February 5, 2020 letter.
  3. Please provide all records[11] among and between USSS, Hunter Biden, Katie Dodge, or Joan Mayer regarding Hunter Biden’s travel while his father was Vice President.

             

Please provide this information as soon as possible but no later than October 26, 2020.  Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

 

Ron Johnson                                                                                                        Charles E. Grassley

Chairman                                                                                                             Chairman

Committee on Homeland Security and                                                                Committee on Finance

Governmental Affairs  

 

 



[1] Letter from Chairman Ron Johnson, S. Comm. on Homeland Sec. & Governmental Aff., and Chairman Charles E. Grassley, S. Comm. on Fin., to James M. Murray, Dir., U.S. Secret Serv., Feb. 5, 2020, https://www.grassley.senate.gov/sites/default/files/documents/2020-02-05%20CEG%20RHJ%20to%20Secret%20Service%20%28Biden%20Travel%29.pdf.

[2] S. Comm. on Homeland Sec. and Governmental Aff. & S. Comm. on Fin., Hunter Biden, Burisma, and Corruption: The Impact on U.S. Government Policy and Related Concerns (Sept. 2020), https://www.hsgac.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/HSGAC_Finance_Report_FINAL.pdf.

[3] Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge, Hunter Biden emails show leveraging connections with his father to boost Burisma pay, NY Post (Oct. 14, 2020), https://nypost.com/2020/10/14/hunter-biden-emails-show-leveraging-connections-with-dad-to-boost-burisma-pay/.

[4] Id.

[5] Protectee Visits Detail Reports for Robert H. Biden, U.S. Secret Serv., Date Range: January 1, 2008 - January 31, 2017. According to the USSS report, “The U.S. Secret Service cannot confirm that the trips occurred or if protection was provided for the entirety of the trip due to the age of the records at issue.”

[6] Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge, Smoking-gun email reveals how Hunter Biden introduced Ukrainian businessman to VP dad, NY Post (Oct. 14, 2020), https://nypost.com/2020/10/14/email-reveals-how-hunter-biden-introduced-ukrainian-biz-man-to-dad/. 

[7] Protectee Visits Detail Reports for Robert H. Biden, U.S. Secret Serv., Date Range: January 1, 2008 - January 31, 2017.

[8] Quinn Hillyer, Media risks malpractice by dismissing alleged anti-Biden bombshell, Washington Examiner (Oct. 15, 2020), https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/media-risks-malpractice-by-dismissing-alleged-anti-biden-bombshell; Emma-Jo Morris and Gabrielle Fonrouge, Smoking-gun email reveals how Hunter Biden introduced Ukrainian businessman to VP dad, NY Post (Oct. 14, 2020), https://nypost.com/2020/10/14/email-reveals-how-hunter-biden-introduced-ukrainian-biz-man-to-dad/.

[9] Protectee Visits Detail Reports for Robert H. Biden, U.S. Secret Serv., Date Range: January 1, 2008 - January 31, 2017.

[10] Alleged emails between Joan Mayer and Vadim Pozharskyi (July 24-27, 2015).

[11] “Records” include any written, recorded, or graphic material of any kind, including letters, memoranda, reports, notes, electronic data (emails, email attachments, and any other electronically-created or stored information), calendar entries, inter-office communications, meeting minutes, phone/voice mail or recordings/records of verbal communications, and drafts (whether or not they resulted in final documents).