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White House won't rule out commuting Hunter Biden’s sentence

The White House on Wednesday didn’t rule out President Biden commuting the sentence of his son Hunter Biden after a jury delivered a guilty verdict the day before on all three charges related to the purchase of a gun.

Administration officials were peppered with questions for the first time since the verdict was delivered during a gaggle with reporters on Air Force One while the president was en route for Italy for the Group of Seven summit later this week.

The president previously said he would not pardon his son and, after the younger Biden was found guilty on Tuesday, said he would accept the outcome of the trial.

But when asked about commuting a sentence, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre dodged the question and leaned on Biden’s response to ABC last week that he won’t pardon his son.

“I haven’t spoken to the president about this since the verdict came out and as we all know, the sentencing hasn’t even been scheduled yet,” she said about a commutation.

“He was asked about a pardon, he was asked about the trial specifically and he answered it very clearly, very forthright. As we know, the sentencing hasn’t even been scheduled yet. I don’t have anything beyond what the president said. He’s been very clear about this,” she added.

Hunter Biden’s sentencing date has not yet been set, but it is expected to take place about a month before November’s Election Day. The charges against Hunter Biden involve him lying on a form about being addicted to drugs while obtaining a firearm in 2018 and he faces a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison and a $750,000 fine, though first-time offenders rarely get that much.

Hours after the verdict, the president took an unplanned trip to Wilmington, Del., Tuesday and the White House canceled its press briefing with reporters.

Hunter Biden and his family met the president when he landed on the tarmac, but Jean-Pierre wouldn’t share how much time the father and son spent together before Hunter Biden returned to his Los Angeles home. President Biden spent the night in Wilmington before departing for Italy.

When asked where the president was when the verdict came down, Jean-Pierre said she wouldn’t “dive into any specifics.”

“This is about his family, this is about his son who he loves and obviously supports,” she said.

President Biden has commuted dozens of sentences throughout his presidency for nonviolent drug offenses. In April, he granted clemency to 16 people who were convinced of nonviolent drug offenses and he commuted the sentences of 31 Americans serving for nonviolent drug offenses who were all on home confinement.


Source: The Hill

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