Contacts on Hunter’s Laptop

Remarkably, he had contact information on there!

The NY Post had yet another “exclusive” story on Hunter Biden’s laptop: Hunter Biden’s laptop had contacts for Google execs, US officials for China policy. The headline well describes the story. Hunter Biden apparently had contact information on his laptop. Further, evidence suggests that he used that contact information to contact people.

If I sound unimpressed, I am.

Indeed, I am amazed that anybody finds it remarkable that he had contact information of executives and government officials (but, it impresses people at Power Line who stated “It is an excellent story” and RedState whose headline notes that it “Raises Even More Questions”). I mean, it is an excellent list of contacts and a recitation of phone calls and appointments. And people can certainly ask whatever questions they like.

Still, in terms of the contacts, he was the son of a former Senator and Vice President at the time–getting contact info for such a person is not that hard. Contact information isn’t exactly that hard to come by. Indeed, depending on what numbers and whatnot he had, they may have been publicly available. And using that contact information to try and drum up business is not exactly high corruption (if it is, all the salespeople who constantly email and call me trying to sell me consulting services have some explaining to do).

The whole piece boils down to this quote, which I think is the totality of the Hunter Biden story:

“My overall impression [was] this guy has clearly just been riding daddy’s coat tails and I have better things to do with my time,” Davies said.

No joke.

The full context of the above:

“He was pitching some crazy things like some Chinese stuff. … We kind of looked at it and I kinda scoffed at it,” Davies, 42, told The Post. “He certainly did not know what he was talking about as it relates to energy. It was very much ‘I am Hunter Biden — look at the last name. Rosemont Seneca. We are brokering deals.’ He certainly did not have subject matter expertise about what he was trying to pitch.”

Rosemont Seneca was an investment firm founded in June 2009 by Hunter Biden and Chris Heinz, the ketchup fortune heir and stepson of John Kerry. Eric Schwerin was later named its president. The fund aggressively pursued deals in Russia, Romania, Ukraine, China and elsewhere.

Davies said could not recall the specific ventures Hunter Biden presented at the Spring 2011 meeting. Davies sent a LinkedIn connection request to Hunter Biden in June of that year, the laptop shows.

Do I like that Hunter Biden has tried (and I am sure still tries) to use his last name to his advantage? I do not. Do I think this is something unusual for the children of the rich and famous to do? I do not.

The article is literally a list of people Hunter Biden had on his computer and some of the contacts were also in the calendar. Of course, I would be remiss if I did not underscore the evidence of Linkedin usage in the above-quoted materials.

What I find especially interesting is the way in which this story (and other stories I have seen about this matter) are mostly just recycled versions of previous stories on this topic. The piece reuses a number of photos that often accompany these pieces and the piece mostly focuses on a 2013 trip that Hunter took with his father to China. It is recycling and reinforcement of concerns and questions, without any real evidence, let alone anything truly new (again: having people’s contact info is news?).

The main recycling is innuendo that Joe Biden was the recipient of one of Hunter’s China deals.

Overall, the coverage (I use the terms loosely) of Hunter Biden by outlets like the Post reminds me of the stories of alleged Middle East terrorism in Latin America that I often comment on, insofar as those stories also just recycle and repackage themselves over and over again as if they are saying something new.

“Excellent” indeed.

(And for the record, in case some new reader happens upon this: let me be clear that if Hunter Biden is guilty of a crime, he should be prosecuted. And if Joe Biden has some secret corrupt deal with the Chinese, impeach him and charge him. Let’s see the evidence. I would also note that if one actually thinks that Hunter’s laptop is truly chock full of damning info, one ought to ask why some so anodyne as a contact list is presented as a shocking exclusive).

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Sleeping Dog says:

    Dr. T, I’d like to thank you for reading these Hunter Biden stories so I/we don’t have to. Speaking for the OTB commentators, we do hope that you have a sufficient amount of aspirin available to dull the pain from the number of faceplants that you surely must incur.

    That said, HB stories are the political Kardashians.

  2. Kurtz says:

    It’s a deus ex machina for the conspiracists and a totem for whataboutists.

    It’s like that PDA Seinfeld gifted his dad. Jerry told Morty it was ‘hot’ to increase excitement over the gift. H. Biden’s laptop became a story during an administration that openly committed corruption.

    But who cares about open corruption? Better to have the vague outlines of a story so the reader can participate in a detective game. The PDA can calculate tips, but if it fell off the back of the truck, just owning it brings a sense of illicit pleasure from participating in a crime.

  3. de stijl says:

    Who needs a calculator to do tips?

    Divide by ten, multiply by two, round up.

    I was nearly 30 until I realized you were supposed to leave a tip for hotel maids. I had no clue. I did not know. I feel embarrassed for past me and kind of shitty. If I could travel back in time to leave a tip I would do so.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    I have the contact information for several govt officials and agencies on my computer. I also have contact info for some rather *dark characters* on 3 continents. I must be up to no good.

    **they’re cavers, of course they are dark.

    The main recycling is innuendo that Joe Biden was the recipient of one of Hunter’s China deals.

    Having looked at Joe’s financial filings for the past decade or so back in 2020, it’s more likely he got taken as opposed to receiving any monetary benefits.

  5. de stijl says:

    There may be a little there there in the Hunter laptop story.

    At first it seemed too ludicrous to take at face value. But the scenario seems to be basically true.

    A guy traded on his famous and connected big time dad for personal financial gain.

    I’m shocked! This is my shocked face.

    However, if daddy did pull some strings there is some ‘splainin’ to do.

    I don’t expect it to turn into much, but you never know.

    At initial reporting I bought into the “this looks like a disinformation tactic” and in my defense, it really did look and smell that way.

    Beware your biases. The will mislead you occasionally.

  6. Kurtz says:

    @de stijl:

    Who needs a calculator to do tips?

    The residents of Del Boca Vista.

  7. Kurtz says:

    @de stijl:

    Yeah, I mean no doubt we should avoid disbelieving it reflexively. Whatever patina of truth is there, the purpose of publishing about it is hardly getting to the truth.

  8. Jax says:

    I’ve kinda been laughing and eyerolling at the Post and their attempts to distract attention from the most recent horrible Trump news with yet another round of “Hunter Biden’s Laptop!!!” stories. Talk about beating a dead horse.

  9. EddieInCA says:

    On my laptop, tablet and phone, I have contact info for:

    Former Gov of Missouri Bob Holden (I’m related to him by marriage)
    Former Mayor David Dinkins
    Andrew Cuomo
    Rep. Brad Sherman
    Former Senator Bob Kerry
    Former Gov. Schwarzenegger
    Former Sen Barbara Boxer
    Former DA Gil Garcetti
    HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra (He calls my mom every year on her birthday.)
    Former FL Atty General Pam Biondi
    Former Florida Congressman Bill MCollum

    I guess I’d be I trouble if someone found my laptop.

  10. de stijl says:


    I know you and I have some commenting history back and forth about caving in the past. For example, I know you think the the word “spelunking” is fancy pants.

    I just want to say that getting into caving and pursuing it over many years is pretty fucking bad-ass. It is impressive.

    Long story short, you’ve heard it before. I was a pretty avid urban explorer. Been underground a lot, done the caves beneath the bluffs south of St. Paul blah blah. Some buddies were planning a real caving trip to Missouri. I begged on.

    I had eagerly tipped myself off the bungee cord edge. I had flung myself out of an airplane (well, the girl I was strapped to flung herself out, but I was up for it and pysched as hell). Class five rapids. I’m up for this. I’m ready.

    I wasn’t.

    I was pretty cool in relatively open sections, but I was not cool in tight fits. I felt the weight of all that stone and soil above me around me and my brain and my body was freaking the fuck out screaming “FLEE!”

    I held it together. I faked like I was okay. Everybody knew I was faking. I pushed through, twice literally. I was not going to spoil the trip and ruin the experience for them. That was not an option. I moved forward. My endocrine system and parasympathetic system was dousing my body with so many chemicals.

    I froze for a bit. How long is 20 heartbeats? To my credit I wriggled forward when I unfroze and did not say a word.

    I have never seen a sky so pure and right as when we got out. Sky and blessed earth beneath my feet as opposed to above me, weighing down on me.

    I am glad I did it. I am glad I did not flee. I would not do it again. I came very close to fucking up the trip for everybody. I was giving off bad vibes. It was a close thing that they did not haul my scrawny newbie, tourist ass out of there.

    I apologized after.

    A good life experience. A learning experience. A humbling experience. I’m thankful I did it.

  11. DK says:

    Jared Kushner got a $1 billion blood money bribe from the Saudis. While the China Communist Party was busy approving an inordinately high number of patents for Ivanka Trump’s crappy products.

    I’ll care about Hunters laptop when there’s reporting on the contacts in Javanka’s laptops (and an investigation into the private emails and unsecured phones they were using as high level White House advisors).

  12. Moosebreath says:


    “and an investigation into the private emails and unsecured phones they were using as high level White House advisors”

    And an investigation into why Jared was denied a security clearance.

  13. Mikey says:


    Jared Kushner got a $1 billion blood money bribe from the Saudis.

    Wasn’t it $2 billion? Which he only got after MBS overrode the KSA’s financial advisors who basically said nobody in their right mind would give Kushner a dime.

  14. de stijl says:


    Del Boca Vista Phase 2.

    The distinction is important.

  15. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: A guy traded on his famous and connected big time dad for personal financial gain.
    I’m shocked! This is my shocked face.
    However, if daddy did pull some strings there is some ‘splainin’ to do.

    Funny how this is an issue with Biden, but nobody ever held Ivanka, Erik, or D Jr to the same standard.

  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @de stijl: There is a rule in caving: Anybody, at any time can call it. They can say, for any reason, “I am done.”

    I have done it more than a few times. No shame. Was in a wet Crawford Co hole and so hypothermic I knew I couldn’t think straight. Was in Carrol Cave with a too tight wet suit and said, “No Mas.” There was the time a Buick sized boulder picked me up, threw me up against a wall and tried to kill me and 2 other cavers. For years after, I had problems with big breakdown. Went to Mexico and dropped the 600’+ pit Cuesta, but once I was down there, I was certain the cave wanted to kill me. Dropped Gollandrinas and sat on a rock at the bottom wondering if the cave would allow me to climb out.

    I have danced with death. I make no judgements of those who have done the same.

  17. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Moosebreath: I don’t remember the details anymore, but at the time, it was pretty clear about why Jared was denied a security clearance as I recall.

  18. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: That’s because nobody ever expected anything different from them and if the voters electoral college elects a grifter, that must conform with the goals of the social contract of the nation.

    Also IOKIYAR.

  19. Ken_L says:

    Trump Republican bloggers routinely refer to “the Biden Crime Family” based on the non-existent evidence of corruption supposedly contained in Hunter’s laptop.

    These are the people who saw nothing wrong with the former guy charging people $200,000 a year to gain weekend/holiday access to him at his clubs.