By Naveen Athrappully
Former Trump White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany dismissed the idea that Hunter Biden could be responsible for bringing cocaine into the White House, just as Biden officials invoked the Hatch Act to avoid commenting about potential ties with the president’s son.
“I don’t see how that’s possible,” McEnany, who is now a Fox News host, said Thursday during an appearance on a network show. “For it to be Hunter Biden, he left on Friday, he was at Camp David. There is no way, it’s inconceivable to think cocaine could sit for a 72-hour period. So, I would rule him out at this point.” McEnany’s comments come after former President Donald Trump recently blamed the Biden family for the cocaine.
“Does anybody really believe that the COCAINE found in the West Wing of the White House, very close to the Oval Office, is for the use of anyone other than Hunter and Joe Biden,” Trump said in a July 6 Truth Social post.
“But watch, the Fake News Media will soon start saying that the amount found was ‘very small’, and it wasn’t really COCAINE, but rather common ground up Aspirin, and the story will vanish.”
Andrew Bates, the White House deputy press secretary, triggered more heated debate about the drug issue after he avoided giving a clear answer to a reporter who asked whether Bates was willing to say that the cocaine did not belong to the president or his son.
“I don’t have a response to that because we have to be careful about the Hatch Act,” said Bates.
The Hatch Act restricts federal employees from taking part in certain partisan political activities—referring to activities directed at the success or failure of a party or candidate.
In an interview with Fox News, former Bush administration ethics chief Richard Painter, who has run for Congress as a Democrat, said that the Hatch Act “does not cover snorting cocaine.”
“What the … does the Hatch Act have to do with cocaine?” Painter said. “This is the most ridiculous invocation of the Hatch Act I’ve ever heard.”
In a July 7 tweet, Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) asked “how does the Hatch Act apply to discussing who the White House cocaine belongs to?”
“They’re creating more questions than answers about this whole thing. Makes you wonder what they’re trying to actually distract us from.”
Cocaine in the White House
The cocaine was found in the White House on Sunday evening, July 3, with the U.S. Secret Service confirming the discovery and proposing that it was brought in by someone who works there or had the authorization to enter the place.
The news triggered speculation of Hunter Biden’s involvement since the president’s son is known to have used drugs. In his memoir “Beautiful Things,” Hunter admits that he was addicted to crack cocaine for several years.
The U.S. Secret Service has not yet identified the person who brought the drug inside the White House. In an interview with Daily Mail, former border commissioner and longtime FBI agent Mark Morgan suggested that the investigation should already have been wrapped up.
There is “forensic evidence, controlled access, cameras, witnesses, the manifest of who actually is coming to the White House, and who’s going through those areas, and a limited timeframe,” he said. “They’ve got so much information … this one’s a pretty straightforward investigation.”
“My question is, how much of that has been done?” Morgan asked. “A lot of that could be influenced by the White House. This probably would go to the Deputy Chief of Staff’s purview to work with the Secret Service to coordinate. So my question is the Secret Service saying, ‘Hey, we need to interview XYZ.’ Are they allowed to interview those people?’”
“Are they able to go in and pull surveillance tapes as they need? Are they able to talk to the people that they would normally need to talk to for this investigation without any roadblocks? I don’t know. Those are good questions that I don’t have the answer to,” Morgan stated.
Many netizens are also questioning why agencies are taking so long to identify a suspect in the case. In a July 7 tweet, Michael Quinn Sullivan, host of the Texas Minute Podcast, suggested that there is a political bias in play.
“If cocaine would have been found in the White House when Trump was president, the DEA and D.C. police would have conducted a no-knock raid and arrested everyone inside,” he said.
Regarding the incident, Donald Trump Jr. said in a July 6 tweet: “For perspective, the media made a much bigger deal about my father drinking multiple Diet Cokes a day then they are about actually finding cocaine in the White House which also led to an evacuation!”
“They’re just democrat propagandists at this point … nothing more nothing less.”