The National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC), a nonprofit public interest organization, on Wednesday, May 20, filed a complaint with the Department of Education, demanding it investigate the University of Pennsylvania and the Biden Center for failing to disclose millions of dollars in donations from China since 2013.
In its complaint, the NLPC, which promotes ethics in public life and government and corporate accountability through research, investigation, education, and legal action, argued that the university and the Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement have violated a federal law requiring the disclosure of the source of all donations over $250,000.
“From 2013-2019, the University of Pennsylvania received more than $67 million from China sources. More significantly, after the Penn Biden Center opened here in Washington, D.C., in February 2018, the China gifts poured in all the more, and continued after [former Vice President Joe] Biden announced his candidacy of the presidency on April 25, 2019,” the complaint stated.
The complaint noted that the Biden Center co-sponsored the 2020 Penn China Research Symposium on Jan. 31, 2020, that included opening remarks by Ambassador Huang Ping, consul-general of the People’s Republic of China in New York amid growing concern about Chinese Communist Party (CCP) coverup of the CCP Virus (coronavirus) outbreak at its early stages.
“It is apparent that the Biden Center is beholden to China for its operations,” said Peter Flaherty, Chair of NLPC. “This has an insidious affect on shaping the programs it produces.”
Citing numerous reports, the complaint also noted that the Board of Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania Chairman David L. Cohen, was a “major fundraiser” for former President Barack Obama and now for Biden.
Biden’s position with the CCP along with his son Hunter Biden’s business dealings with Beijing raised conflict of interest questions as the former vice president now becomes the 2020 presumptive Democratic nominee.
After his controversial business dealings in Ukraine emerged, Hunter Biden promised in October 2019 that he would resign from the board of BHR Partners, a Chinese private equity firm funded and controlled primarily by CCP-owned shareholders. However, business records showed he is still listed on the board and retains a 10% stake in the firm, according to the The Daily Caller.
Biden, who remains soft on Beijing since his time as vice president, said the CCP isn’t a threat and downplayed its ongoing disinformation campaigns to undermine the United States geopolitically and economically.
“China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man,” Biden said last summer in Iowa. “They’re not bad folks, folks. But guess what? They’re not competition for us.”
Most recently, Biden slammed President Trump for issuing a ban on travel to and from China in an effort to mitigate the spread of the virus in the United States, calling the president “xenophobic, and fear-mongering.” Months later, Biden changed his mind in support of the ban.