America is facing the continuing effects of the COVID-19 global pandemic on both the economy and public feelings of fear and/or frustration, racially-based civil unrest, and the over-the-top political antics of the presidential election season. In the past–feels like the ancient past–the news media would have reported all of the potential scandals and questionable activities of all of the candidates for the highest office in the land. But those days are over, as many in the mainstream media report as if only those with an “R” at the end of their name are capable of behavior that should be questioned or brought to the attention of the American voting public. This is why it is not surprising that a report from the Washington Free Beacon has been largely ignored with a few conservative news outlet exceptions.
Joe Biden is currently the presumptive Democratic Party nominee for President. Biden has been running what many are calling a “basement campaign,” making few public appearances. Democratic operatives claim this is due to COVID concerns and a strategy to step back and let Donald Trump implode (which is what they desperately want the American people to believe). Trump surrogates (and many who have simply been paying attention) vocally assert that it is an attempt to protect Biden from exposing what appears to be declining mental capacity. But clearly, it is also a way of helping the news media in their quest to protect the man they want to move 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue from having to answer questions he may not want to answer. (Remember how long it took to get an official response to the Tara Reade allegations?)
The Washington Free Beacon report that is being mostly ignored to this point is not as “bombshell” as sexual misconduct claims or as politically damaging as Biden’s involvement in Ukraine to protect Hunter should have been. It doesn’t even rise to the level of being in a meeting with then “Occupier of the White House” Barack Obama, along with members of the DOJ, when plans to derail the Trump presidency where being made. (After all, that’s par for the course these days … right?) But, the issue exposed in this news story is the kind of reporting that the American people–regardless of how they vote–once cared about very deeply.
The Biden Cancer Initiative, a nonprofit that the former Vice President established after leaving the White House, spent nearly two-thirds of its budget on staff compensation. A rather large percentage of the operating budget for a nonprofit; in fact, most charity watchdogs recommend twenty-five percent of the budget be spent on administrative overhead and fundraising costs combined. According to Charity Navigator, “spending less than a third of their budget on program expenses are simply not living up to their missions.” Is this alone enough to reflect poorly on Biden? If you don’t look any deeper, maybe not, but there is more to the story.
You see, at the Biden Cancer Initiative, salaries made up nearly 65% of its total expenditures. The organization raised and spent $4.8 million over the two years it was in operation, $3 million of that went to salaries, compensation, and benefits, according to 2017 and 2018 tax forms. The Biden Cancer Initiative also spent $1.7 million on other expenses not related to their mission to “develop and drive implementation of solutions to accelerate progress in cancer prevention, detection, diagnosis, research, and care, and to reduce disparities in cancer outcomes,” including $740,000 for conferences, conventions, and meetings. Still not worth raising an eyebrow for most political observers, until you look at who has been receiving those salaries.
The Biden Cancer Initiative’s president Greg Simon and it’s vice president Danielle Carnival were among the executives who were paid six figures. They also had been a part of the Obama administration’s “Cancer Moonshot” program, as were many of the six-figure executives. Some would excuse this as Biden working with people he knows who have “expertise” in the field. However, it does raise the question of if the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee’s organization allowed associates to profit off their access to Biden. (Not the first time this question has arisen. In fact, one might say it speaks to a pattern of behavior.)
Joe Biden has garnered goodwill, as well as cash contributions, in the name of fighting cancer. Biden’s son Beau died of brain cancer in 2015 at the age of 46, so Biden would be expected to be passionate about that fight. But then it would appear that he was not a good steward of the resources granted to the Initiative. It would be fair to ask what, if anything, was actually done to fight cancer at the Initiative. If the American people can’t trust Biden with private dollars given to combat something that took his son from him, how can he be trusted with taxpayer money (not that he doesn’t already have a track-record with taxpayer dollars)?
It would appear from the outside that too many in the Democratic party and those surrounding him, Joe Biden has ceased to be a person and now is just a brand. A brand that the party can use to advance their goals–and should Biden win in November–to control from behind the scenes. A brand that those around him can latch onto and leech off of to pad their bank accounts. Joe Biden and his wife Jill left the organization’s board in April 2019 as he prepared to launch his presidential campaign. The Biden Cancer Initiative suddenly shuttered on July 11, 2019. Was this because without the brand, the dollars stopped coming into the Initiative? Why were these executives at the Initiative, to fight cancer or to cash checks?