After ignoring news Wednesday night of an IRS whistleblower coming forward to allege improper meddling in the federal investigation of Hunter Biden, ABC and NBC emerged Thursday morning and inform their audiences about a concerning development originally reported by the CBS Evening News and The Wall Street Journal.
Unfortunately, in the case of NBC’s Today, they saw it fit to only spend 36 seconds on a story that’d receive perhaps ten times more time if it were about a Trump family member.
Co-host Savannah Guthrie announced during the 8:00 a.m. Eastern hour that “[a]n IRS agent thought to be involved in the investigation of Hunter Biden's taxes is asking for whistleblower protection so he can share sensitive information with Congress.”
An attorney for this unnamed agent says his client believes the inquiry has been hampered by conflicts of interest, preferential treatment, and politics. In a letter to lawmakers, he said his client is willing to disclose information that he says would contradict sworn testimony already given to Congress. Federal prosecutors have been investigating Hunter Biden's taxes since 2018 and Biden denied any wrongdoing saying, “I handled my affairs legally and appropriately.”
It sure sounds serious (and it is), but NBC showed it doesn’t with that time commitment.
ABC’s Good Morning America had a full report lasting one minute and 57 seconds, excluding a tease. In said tease, fill-in co-host Rebecca Jarvis announced: “New this morning, an IRS whistleblower claiming the federal investigation into Hunter Biden is being mishandled. ABC News learning the President’s son is allegedly getting preferential treatment.”
Fast-forward to the segment and chief Justice correspondent Pierre Thomas noted that “[w]e’ve been waiting for months to see whether the investigation of Hunter Biden will result in charges, but now,” there’s a development in the form of “allegations that the President’s son has been getting preferential treatment
“This morning, ABC News learning that an IRS whistleblower is challenging assurances by the Justice Department that the investigation into Hunter Biden is not being watered down,” he added, followed by sound of Attorney General Merrick Garland insisting on March 1 that the probe “has full authority,” “ is not to be denied anything” and has no “restrict[ions].”
Thomas then went to “a letter to Congress obtained by ABC News” from “an attorney representing an IRS agent who claims to be involved in the case” as well as a clip of said attorney stating his client believes “he would feel worse about himself if he did nothing.”
Thomas spent the rest recapping what the U.S. Attorney for Delaware is said to have been examining (click “expand”):
THOMAS: The President’s son, who says his name will be cleared, has been under investigation by the Justice Department since during the Trump administration. One front of the investigation involving his taxes, another involving whether he made a false statement on a gun purchasing form. Sources told ABC News that, last fall, the FBI and ATF concluded there is enough evidence to bring charges on both fronts.
FBI DIRECTOR CHRIS WRAY [on 03/09/23]: There is an on going investigation run by U.S. Attorney out of Delaware from the prior administration. [SCREEN WIPE] Our Baltimore field office is working very hard with that U.S. Attorney, and I expect them to pursue that case.
THOMAS: But after all these months, no resolution from a Trump-appointed U.S. Attorney, the Biden administration and attorney general have allowed to remain in place to avoid the appearance of meddling. But despite those assurances, the Hunter Biden case will get more scrutiny. Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee is demanding answers, and he’s accusing the Biden administration of blocking efforts to bring tax charges against Hunter Biden.
CBS Mornings also kept up the story to the tune of three minutes and 15 seconds that, other than the opening (this time from co-host Nate Burleson), it was nearly a word-for-word reairing of the “CBS News Investigates” special from Wednesday’s Evening News by chief investigative correspondent Jim Axelrod.
With eight minutes and 54 seconds total on this new wrinkle (and what, to some, must feel like the umpteenth Hunter Biden scandal), it’s a serious open question as to whether the broadcast networks will show any interest in this and if, like others, this too will be memory-holed.