It’s rather curious that Devon Archer, Hunter Biden’s business partner, chose to do an in-depth interview with Tucker Carlson — someone the Biden world no doubt would view as an enemy. If you’re trying to assess where his head is at on this whole matter and wondering if he’s being fully forthcoming, that would seem to be: “You can’t shut me up, and this is how much.”
We covered Part 1, where Archer admitted that it was about selling access at the end of the day. He described and showed a letter that he got from Joe Biden, thanking him for helping to bring this together.
It was kinda the beginning of our partnership, and he was thanking me and thanking Hunter, I think, at the end of the day for bringing the idea of this government regulatory/strategic advisory business into the private equity world. And I think he was excited about the prospects for Hunter and, you know, he was just…just thanking me. It was a nice gesture.
That must be the 5,008th time that Joe Biden’s claim he “never spoke to his son about his business” gets blown up.
In the second part, Archer laid out some of his background with Yale, where he played lacrosse, various banking institutions, and fundraising as a “baby bundler” before the 2004 election. He thought that was going to lead him to a White House job. When the Democrats lost, that’s when he started Rosemont Capital with a focus on real estate, which he described as pretty successful, having $3 billion under its management. It’s fascinating, and Tucker let him talk, as Archer laid out how this all evolved.
Ep. 13 Part 2. Devon Archer pic.twitter.com/R1sxSuPrKq
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) August 4, 2023
That’s when Hunter Biden showed up in the equation. He said Hunter was at a stage where he was “transitioning from lobbying to strategic advisory.” They then start laughing, I think because they know Devon is starting to potentially get into some legal questions, at about 13:30 on the video. Tucker noted there’s a “distinction without a difference” and “one you register for and one you don’t.”
“There are some legal limits on registering around when your father is the Vice President,” Archer acknowledged.
Tucker said you can’t lobby, but you can “strategically advise,” and Archer agreed.
He said what he hoped for with Hunter was “introductions” to raise more capital, a “simple kind of connecting the dots” to connect up to people who had money. “Hindsight’s twenty-twenty,” he said, but at the time, it seemed like a way to broaden their network and have this “access, regulatory understanding of D.C.” or hooking up with political donors who Hunter might know.
Then came the Burisma deal. He described how he first came in contact with the Burisma CEO Mykola Zlochevsky and the corporate secretary, Vadym Pozharskyi, around 2012 but did not hook up at that point. Fast forward to 2014. He was in Europe doing a deal – right on the day that Vladimir Putin invaded Crimea, so the deal fell through. Again he was set up with Zlochevsky. While Zlochevsky ignored his real estate pitch, he asked if Archer would like to meet the President of Poland, Aleksander Kwaśniewski, who was on the Burisma board. Archer was then invited to Poland. That’s when they asked him to join the board and help raise outside capital for Burisma. While Hunter Biden wasn’t mentioned at that point, Archer smiled and said that he couldn’t deny that the Burisma guys had done some research on them, and he was not by any stretch of the imagination an expert in the excavation of natural gas. Archer said he thinks it was about the fact that he was close to “political power.”
Archer said he joined the board of Burisma in March 2014, and then he brought Hunter Biden on to give legal advice to the company. The idea was to have a firm in D.C. that would look out for Burisma’s best interests. Tucker said he had to call b.s. on that since D.C. is full of lawyers with a lot more experience than Hunter. Archer said that was true, but Hunter was his partner. He said that when they had a meeting in Lake Como, the Burisma guys and Hunter were there, and that, in his view, was when the Burisma guys realized the value that Hunter might bring in, and they could “get the son of the Vice President on the board.”
Tucker then pulled out an email from Pozharskyi saying they need their “influence” to convey a message “signal” to stop politically motivated actions against Burisma. Archer explained that “signal” was a common term overseas meaning “I hope we’re protected.” “I think that’s what lobbying firms are for,” Archer said.
That’s when they get to talking about Viktor Shokin at about 33:39, who was, at the time, the Prosecutor General in Ukraine. Archer described him as “taking a close look at Burisma” and being more “case active than a U.S. attorney general,” hence why the “signals are more important.” Archer said that there were allegations that some of the company’s deposits were not “authentically acquired.” This was what law firms and “strategic advisory firms” were hired for, to handle these kinds of things, Archer said.
Archer then said The Atlantic Council was raising questions about Shokin. That’s when Tucker and Archer got into a fascinating discussion about why The Atlantic Council would even be involved in commenting about the Ukrainian prosecutor. Archer grinned and said that’s a question that he didn’t know the answer to. But “Shokin was considered a threat” to the business, Archer confirmed, noting that he had seized assets of Zlochevsky, as we have reported in the past. Archer described how Zlochevsky never returned to Ukraine after his assets were seized. This, by the way, completely blows up the Democratic spin on the question that Shokin wasn’t prosecuting Burisma.
Archer noted how there was all this pressure to fire Shokin, then, somehow, Burisma was “let off the hook.” Tucker noted how a big part of that pressure came from Joe Biden, and Archer agreed “He was involved in that.” Archer made clear it wasn’t discussed on the board, so he couldn’t say that it was a declared “favor.” He said that the “narrative” that was emphasized to him was that this was, in fact, “bad, we don’t want a new prosecutor, Shokin was taken care of.”
Archer said he didn’t hear any conversations between Joe Biden and Hunter Biden about Burisma. With “signals and influence,” Archer said, the prize is enough in knowing you have that proximity to power.
Again at 42:25, Carlson asked about Biden getting Shokin fired, and Archer repeated that the “narrative” being pushed was that “Shokin was under control” and was not going to be a problem for Burisma. Tucker and he then laugh about that “narrative.” “The guy who was going to shut our business down just got fired! Oh no!” Tucker laughed. Archer admitted that the narrative didn’t look good as he looked back, “It doesn’t paper as well.”
Archer then explained how Hunter’s being on the board then became a big news story, and that’s when things started going south – that was what he referred to as the “Icarus” moment. There was constant pressure from Burisma to “send signals.” Archer said yes, they were hoping to leverage Hunter’s relationship with his father, the Biden brand, and the D.C. insiders — to help Burisma to survive. It was that ability to “help on the geopolitical stage” that Hunter brought — to “keep them out of trouble, keep them out of investigations, unfreeze assets.” They had some success in releasing a 23 million pound Burisma account from the government. He said the perception of Hunter being on the board may have helped with that, but there was no “active” action on Hunter’s part that Archer knew of. He said he knows the requests were made by Vadym a lot and that Vadym met with Joe Biden at the Café Milano. “The prize is that contact and the access to power.”
Archer said they were making a lot of money from Burisma – that at one point, it was $2 million a year. He also said that Hunter was making a lot of money from Burisma, but when his father left the vice presidency, he admitted he thinks that went down. Which pretty much says everything about what they were paying for.
Tucker asked about gifts, and Archer mentioned a very expensive watch, but it wasn’t clear who got that gift.
Then they spoke about Victoria Nuland. While he hadn’t met her, he said that she was one that you wanted to curry favor with and wanted “on your good side” because of her influence in the region. He said there was some lobbying done of her because some ambassador had said something about Burisma being corrupt. That didn’t seem to resolve things.
But Archer said he did not think Burisma would have stayed in business so long if Hunter had not been on the board.
Archer left the board after he got in trouble with another company; that’s the fraud case that he’s facing a sentence on now. He admitted it was a very big mistake to be involved with Hunter Biden. He said part of that was him because he pitched Burisma. But the trajectory of his life would have been better had he never met him.
Archer said he has been getting threats, and it’s a bit of a scary time.
Tucker talked about the effort to spin all this regarding Joe Biden at 56:00, with claims that “There’s no corruption here at all – this is totally normal” and that “Joe Biden had no role whatsoever in his son’s business or knowledge of it,” to which Archer replied, “That’s categorically false. That’s not factually right,” he said noting how Joe met with the business associates.
Finally, Tucker asked: “What is the business?” Archer said it was a “diverse portfolio of opportunity,” and they both laughed.
Archer also noted that when he knew Hunter, he didn’t know him to have an interest in painting, so that was a surprise. Carlson said yes, getting $500,000 for a painting after you’ve just started is unusual. Archer just grinned and didn’t want to bite on that one. Tucker asked if he thought that he could get $500,000 a painting, and Archer humorously said, “It depends on how this show goes.”
Tucker asked about the laptop, and Archer said it was not great; that it was a real “bummer” that has perpetuated all this.
Archer mentioned at the end how he couldn’t comment on Hunter’s recovery because he had been “taken out” of the relationship because of the fraud situation. “Do you think you were taken out?” Tucker asked. Archer then said he couldn’t comment on that.
In essence, Archer completely blew up the Democratic spin when it comes to Joe Biden’s involvement, as well as their spin on the Shokin matter.