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Hunter Biden discusses new memoir, laughs off Trump criticism on ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’

Hunter Biden appeared on "Jimmy Kimmel Live," where he discussed his new book "Beautiful Things."ABC

Hunter Biden appeared on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on Thursday to discuss his new book, “Beautiful Things,” in a conversation that included moments of seriousness, sympathy, and occasional hilarity.

Among other things, Biden’s memoir painstakingly chronicles his struggles with crack addiction, so much so that the late-night host joked that the book inadvertently taught him how to smoke crack.

“I hope that wasn’t the message that you took from the book,” the president’s son replied, leaning into Kimmel’s comedy. “It’s not a how-to, it’s a please-don’t manual.”

Kimmel admitted to Biden that after reading his book, “I’m impressed you are alive.”

“Yeah, it was a journey. But thank God I made it through,” Biden said.


Biden explained that he wanted his book to “humanize people who are suffering from addiction.” He said more than anything, the book is a love letter to those who have loved ones suffering from addiction.

“It’s so hard for them to understand that their loved one can’t get through,” Biden said. “I hope that this provides some people some real hope that if they’re just persistent, and they continue, that when that person’s ready to reach for that love, maybe they’ll be able to find their way out of that deep, dark hole.”

“Yeah, boy, was your dad persistent,” Kimmel said.

Biden talked about growing up in Wilmington, Del., and how his father would often take him and his brother to the Senate where he got to know political figures like Lindsey Graham.

“They were like uncles, whether Republican or Democrat,” Biden reflected. He added that “politics has become so toxic” and that a hope for his father’s presidency is “genuine desire to take some of that toxicity out again.”

Kimmel asked Biden if it was strange watching Graham, who he once considered a family friend, attack him on television.


“More than anything, it’s just sad,” Biden said with a sigh. “I had a deep respect for Senator Graham. And it’s just sad to see the way in which he has decided to, not just attack me, but to approach politics.”

Looking to undermine President Biden’s campaign 20 days before the 2020 election, former President Donald Trump and his allies seized on a tabloid story that attempted to link Biden’s role on the board of Ukrainian energy company Burisma to US policies toward Ukraine. The claims were unfounded and widely discredited. When welcoming Biden on the show, Kimmel introduced him as “probably the most famous board member of a Ukrainian energy company of all time.”

Later, Kimmel asked Biden if it makes him “crazy” when he hears someone like Donald Trump Jr. claiming that the only reason Hunter Biden has had any success is because he’s “a Biden” and “because of his last name.”

“That’s wildly comical,” Biden said. “That is putting it lightly.”

Biden said he’s never met Donald Trump Jr., but that he’s “been in some pretty rough places.”

Watch the whole interview:

Brittany Bowker can be reached at brittany.bowker@globe.com. Follow her @brittbowker and also on Instagram @brittbowker.