Klain, who had left his position as chief of staff in then-Vice President Joe Biden’s office a year prior but was still the foundation’s chairman at the time of the emails, told Hunter that he needed Hunter’s help to “tackle a piece of unpleasant business.”
The Vice President’s Residence Foundation is a non-profit organization that helps to preserve and furnish the vice president’s official residence on the grounds of the United States Naval Observatory.
In an email to Hunter, Klain said, “The tax lawyers for the VP Residence Foundation have concluded that since the Cheney folks last raised money in 2007 and not 2008, we actually have to have some incoming funds before the end of this fiscal year to remain eligible to be a “public charity.”
“It’s not much – we need to raise a total of $20,000 – so I’m hitting up a few very close friends on a very confidential basis to write checks of $2,000 each,” Klain continued. “We need to keep this low-key because raising money for the Residence now is bad PR – but it has to be done, so I’m just trying to collect the ten $2,000 checks in a week, and then we can do a Residence Foundation event after the election.”
Hunter forwarded the email to his longtime business partner, Eric Schwerin, who helped manage the majority of Hunter’s finances, a few hours later. Schwerin replied by saying they could “discuss this and some other bills on Monday” and asking if Hunter thought “they would take a corporate check from Owasco,” which appeared to be a reference to Hunter’s law firm, Owasco PC.
Three days after the initial email from Klain, who was the chairman of VPRF in 2012, Schwerin emailed Hunter to let him know that he had talked to Klain and that he was checking on whether the foundation would accept a check from Owasco.
Hunter did not specify whether he used Owasco to donate to the foundation or if he assisted Klain in soliciting donations from others. However, according to a 990 tax form from fiscal year 2012, the foundation received $20,500 in donations.
Klain was president of Case Holdings at the time of his correspondence with Hunter, which is the holding company for “the wide-ranging for-profit and philanthropic interests of AOL co-founder Steve Case and his wife Jean,” according to a press release, and includes investments in Hawaii, the Case Foundation, and Revolution LLC, the venture capital firm where Klain also worked. He was also a member of the Center For American Progress Action Fund’s board of directors.
VPRF’s tax forms state that its operations include “stable costs,” such as insurance premiums and professional services, as well as “cyclical costs,” such as decorating, refurbishing, and transporting pieces to and from storage.
According to the VPRF’s 2012 tax form, “the VPRF is organized and operated in a manner designed to attract public support and maintains a continuous and bona fide program for soliciting funds from the general public.”
The tax forms state that “the VPRF resumed fundraising at the end of its 2012 Fiscal Year and continues fundraising into the 2013 Fiscal Year.” “Funds were raised entirely through public sources in both of these years.” The foundation’s 2012 fiscal year ran from October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012, the same month Klain emailed Hunter Biden for assistance in soliciting donations and when the foundation “resumed fundraising.”
The 2012 emails follow previous reports detailing Hunter Biden’s behind-the-scenes activities after Joe Biden assumed the vice presidentship.
Hunter Biden said in emails between 2010 and 2011 that his relationship with a Chinese tycoon known as “Super Chairman” by Hunter and his partners and who was arrested on money laundering charges in China had “everything to do with my last name.”
Hunter Biden also tried to help a Chinese oil executive buy an African oil field after he was warned the company had ties to countries sanctioned by the US, according to emails obtained by the Free Beacon.