To Tony Bobulinski, the meetings with Joe Biden are unforgettable, and not because they had anything to do with politics. It’s because that’s when Bobulinski fully understood that Joe was very much involved in the foreign business schemes that son Hunter Biden and Joe’s brother Jim had cooked up.
The insight came during two conversations over two days in May 2017. He first met the former vice president in the lobby of the Beverly Hilton Hotel, where Joe was to speak the next day at the Milken Conference on the “moonshot project” of finding a cure for cancer.
“Hunter and Jim and I are there, and Hunter gets up and talks to his father when he comes in,” Bobulinski told me in a Tuesday interview. “He then brings Joe over and introduces me, saying he’s the one who’s helping us with the business we’re doing with the Chinese.”
If Joe Biden was honest with the public when he said he never discussed Hunter’s business with him, the next words out of his mouth would have been, “What business with the Chinese? What are you talking about, son?”
But that’s not what he said, according to Bobulinski. Joe Biden didn’t look surprised or curious about Hunter’s introduction and, after a get-to-know-you conversation, Bobulinski remembers Joe saying, “My son and my brother trust you emphatically so I trust you. Good luck and work hard.”
Joe liked him, Hunter and Jim later said, which Bobulinski took as an official seal of approval.
The next morning, after the speech, Bobulinski says he was ushered backstage to greet Joe Biden again, then walked him to his car. He recalls the former veep’s parting remark as, “Keep an eye on my son and brother and look out for my family.”
He said he then spent two hours with Jim Biden in the hotel, mostly listening to stories about the family and their other business dealings.
At one point, Bobulinski says he asks if the family isn’t concerned that Joe will run for president in 2020.
“I said, ‘Jim, how are you guys doing this, this seems crazy?’ He looks at me and kind of chuckles and says, ‘plausible deniability.’ ”
When I asked him Tuesday by phone if there is any doubt in his mind that Joe Biden was deeply involved in the deals, Bobulinski says absolutely not. “I was only there because I would be running the family business. Why else would he even talk to me?”
Bobulinski has been saying for days that Joe Biden is “the big guy,” and neither the Biden campaign nor anyone in the family has specifically denied it. Yet such is the sorry state of public affairs in America that the tech censors block reports in The Post and elsewhere on the subject and major media outlets don’t even press the presidential front-runner to come clean.
It’s not for a lack of trying on Bobulinski’s effort.
The burly former wrestler at Penn State, Navy lieutenant and self-described “American patriot” first went public last week, making successive statemens Wednesday and Thursday and provided to journalists reams of e-mails, messages and texts covering nearly three years.
Since then, he met with the FBI, where he turned over three phones, and two Senate committees. Asked if he has a formal agreement with the FBI, Bobulinski answered quickly, “I’m a material witness, I don’t need an agreement, I’ve done nothing wrong. I have zero concern.”
He exudes a sense of mission — and anger. It’s been building since he learned in September from a Senate report that Hunter Biden got $5 million in what appears to be a silent side deal from the same Chinese executives with whom Bobulinski had been working.
Then, when The Post published e-mails from the laptop Hunter left at a Delaware repair shop, Biden defenders, in and out of the media, quickly labeled it Russian disinformation. That infuriated Bobulinski further, feeling it was a smear on him and his family’s name.
“It’s defamation of my character because they were accusing me of treason,” he said, specifically citing Rep. Adam Schiff, the California Dem and dead-ender who remains addicted to the idea that President Trump colluded with Russia in 2016, even though special counsel Robert Mueller found no evidence.
The refusal of most media and Big Tech to take Bobulinski’s allegations seriously is the final ingredient in his fury.
“I’m disgusted that I have not gotten a call, e-mail, letter, message, from anyone from Facebook, Google or Twitter asking me to confirm if the e-mails are authentic,” he told me Tuesday. “It should be criminal how they are blocking that critical information from getting to the American people.”
He shares the cold shoulder with The Post, which has been blocked by Twitter, a blatant effort to protect Biden in the waning days of the presidential campaign.
Although his meeting with Joe Biden occurred four months after Joe left the White House at the start of the Trump administration, Bobulinski is emphatic that the start of the Chinese deal, and Joe Biden’s involvement, came much earlier. He tells me he was recruited in 2015 by the man who wrote the “big guy” e-mail, James Gilliar, whom he describes as a former British intelligence officer.
In fact, Bobulinski says Hunter and James Biden had been working to introduce executives of a Chinese energy conglomerate to foreign government leaders around the world for two years.
“When I got involved, they were already saying the Chinese owed them $20 million for two years of work,” Bobulinski told me. He recounts a dinner in a Manhattan restaurant where Hunter started shouting at one of the Chinese executives about the money, saying, “You owe my family tens of millions of dollars, why haven’t you paid?”
The introductions took place in Oman, Poland, Romania, Monaco and others, on top of the lucrative gigs Hunter Biden got in Ukraine and Kazakhstan. None of those connections could have been made without the assumption that they were buying the Biden name, which is why the Chinese were willing to pay Hunter and Jim such princely sums.
“There are statements that are fact, fact, on a potential president of the United States and they pull it down within hours,” Bobulinski says of the censors.
“How does that happen in our country?”
That, too, is a very good question.