The wife to the brother of President Joe Biden has emerged as a central figure in House Republicans’ investigation of the Biden family after she was called for questioning related to hundreds of thousands of dollars in questionable loan payments she has given and received over the years, in some cases to the president.
Sara Biden, who is married to the president’s young brother James, is the focus of a sprawling investigation being led by House Oversight Chair James Comer (R-KY) into millions of dollars earned by herself or other members of the family including Hunter Biden, some of which ended up in President Biden’s bank account. A paper trail over the years reveals that Sara and James have struggled financially and solicited family friends for loans to prop up their own mortgage payments, in some cases going to court over allegations that they failed to live up to their agreements.
RealClearInvestigations reports that Rep. Comer issued a subpoena to the couple seeking answers about a $40,000 transfer to President Biden described as a “loan repayment” on bank documents. The funds originally arrived to Sara and James through a network of shell companies controlled by Hunter and business associates who earned millions while lobbying on behalf of foreign companies. Comer seeks to know whether the payments “were funded by Biden influence-peddling schemes with China.”
“The Committees require you to provide details of these payments and other related matters,” the committee wrote to Sara Biden last month in a joint statement with the Judiciary Committee demanding she make herself available for questions. A separate subpoena was sent to her husband James Biden.
Bank documents uncovered by RealClearInvestigations show that Sara and James Biden struggled as far back as 1997 to make payments on their home in the suburbs of Philadelphia despite receiving a $200,000 loan from Joel Boyarsky, a family friend. The following year, the IRS placed a lien on their home over $145,000 in unpaid taxes.
Two years later, the couple borrowed $353,000 from Leonard Barrack, a Philadelphia attorney who hired Sara to a $300,000 job at James Biden’s request, according to court and other records. Barrack went on to sue the couple after they promised her hiring would bring top-shelf clients to his business through the family’s political connections. The business never materialized.
“Jim Biden assured Barrack that he would be able to generate business for the Barrack Law Firm through his family name and his resemblance to his brother, United States Senator Joseph Biden of Delaware,” according to the 2004 complaint filed in Philadelphia County.
Further allegations from the suit claim that Sara instead used her own business, Lion Hall Group, to solicit outside work in violation of the firm’s rules. Barrack also alleged she used her travel per diem for personal trips, spending $250,000 to ferry herself and her husband to Hawaii, Alaska, and European destinations. Their son Nicholas and a nanny were participants in the trips, as well, Barrack claimed.
“Contrary to Sara Biden’s representations, none of the foregoing trips generated any business for the Barrack Law Firm,” the suit stated. “The Bidens never intended to generate business opportunities for the Barrack Law Firm during their travels, using the trips instead for personal pleasure and to develop opportunities for Lion Hall.”
By the time Sara left the firm in 2003, a total of $500,000 in salary advances were never repaid in the form of additional work or business. The suit alleging “fraud,” “unjust enrichment,” and “breach of contract” was eventually settled out of court on undisclosed terms.
Around the same time, Sara Biden was involved in a number of other political forays that juiced her income during a time of financial stress. In 2000 she was involved in a venture with former Vice President Al Gore to “bridge the digital divide” by providing 800 low-income neighborhoods with high-speed internet. Though she never registered as a lobbyist, Sara donated $1,000 to the project’s entity, NorthPoint Communications, and served on its board. Northpoint filed for bankruptcy one year later.
Through advocacy work done on behalf of a bill to compensate tobacco victims, Sara met Mississippi lawyers Steve Patterson and Timothy Balducci who invited her to become a partner in their effort to establish a powerful D.C.-based Democratic lobbying firm which they planned to name “Patterson Balducci & Biden.” But the deal fell apart when both men were convicted and imprisoned on federal bribery charges, costing Sara Biden additional income.
Then in 2013, after Sara and James purchased a $2.5 million home in Naples, Florida, the IRS came down hard with a $589,000 lien over more unpaid taxes. By this time the couple, owing more than $700,000 in unpaid taxes, solicited another family associate, Biden donor John Hynansky of Delaware, to loan them a total of $900,000 to cover their expenses. During that time, when then-Vice President Biden oversaw U.S. policy toward Ukraine, approved loans to Hynansky’s automotive business to build a 7,300-square-foot Porsche dealership along the highway between Kyiv and Boryspil International Airport.
When the couple sold the Naples home for a loss in 2018, Hynansky submitted documents alleging he was never fully repaid for the original $900,000 sum.
As the couple sought additional help following hurricane damage to their home, some of the formerly incarcerated Mississippi lawyers introduced Sara and James to the founder of Americore Health who was seeking Washington influence to help aggressively expand his chain of rural healthcare centers. Court filings show that the founder sought to claw back a $650,000 personal loan given at the time that he hired Sara’s company to lobby on Americore’s behalf after promising to use political clout to drum up investment money.
According to a suit that again alleged the couple never lived up to promises, plaintiffs described James Biden as a con man who unfairly traded “on the Biden’s [sic] family name.” An attorney for James later claimed that his client paid half of the $650,000 loan sum back to the Americore founder.
Hunter Biden also provided financial benefits to the couple as a lobbyist on behalf of companies in China, Russia, and elsewhere, moving $10 million in 2017 through a network of shell companies and ultimately depositing some of that money to Sara and James Biden. From there, a $40,000 “loan repayment” was made to the president.
House Republicans are expected to launch a full impeachment inquiry later this week, a sign that the investigation exploring potential wrongdoing by President Biden is heating up during a period of prolonged stress in the press and the polls. The White House has attempted to suppress the news story, issuing a memo to mainstream media outlets demanding they debunk “lies” by Republicans. President Biden has angrily denied any involvement in wrongdoing by his son Hunter or other members of his family, but bank records have indicated that he may have to answer for up to nine relatives who profited during and following his years in the Obama administration.