Now it begins. For the next few years, or at least until Kamala Harris takes over the top job, we will be hearing stories how Joe Biden has bumbled his way around Washington.

Which shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone familiar with Biden’s nearly 50 years in the nation’s capital. If Joe is fortunate to complete a two-term presidency, he will have over half a century in politics — 56 years, to be exact — and be 86 years old. Nearly two-thirds of his life he has been endorsing government paychecks.

When Biden is sworn in as the 46th president on Jan. 20, he will be 78 years old. The oldest person ever to accomplish the task. The previous oldest was Donald Trump at 70 years, followed by Ronald Reagan, 69 years of age. Biden will be older when entering the White House than Reagan was when he left.

No previous U.S. president has come close to this statistic. Guinness Book of Records will have to initiate a new category. As a result, Joe will have the distinction of breaking his own record every day he remains in office. His closest competitor will be himself.

Recently, it was revealed Joe and son Hunter, were the alleged recipients of large sums of money from individuals in China, Russia and the Ukraine. Supposedly, a couple of Hunter’s laptop computers contained information regarding these transactions.

Now that Joe is the presumptive president elect of the United States, these stories may conveniently fade away. Almost as if they never happened.

However, a new scandal has been reported by the New York Post, Nov. 14, involving Joe and Jill Biden’s cancer charity. The charity was established following the cancer death of Biden’s eldest son, Beau, in 2015.

Tax filings, according to the Post, indicated “more than $3 million was spent on salaries and zero on cancer research and grants during a two-year period.”

Also, the Bidens “spent nearly $1 million on travel and conference expenses during that time” says NYP.

“The charity took in $4.8 million in contributions in fiscal years 2017 and 2018 and spent $3 million on payroll in those years,” the paper continues.

A couple of highly compensated executives of the charity received $429,850 and $258,850 respectively in 2018. The organization was discontinued in 2019, presumably because Joe was becoming more involved in the 2020 Democrat presidential campaign and didn’t have time to adequately deal with running a charity.

Or, maybe it was because various news organizations were beginning to snoop around, sensing something smelled a little fishy.

Certain types of charities and other tax-exempt organizations are notorious for skirting income tax obligations. Unlike most working individuals whose tax records and expenses are relatively easy to document and research, complex corporate tax accounts and liabilities can be manipulated and reported in much more cryptic ways.

As mentioned, Joe Biden has been around the Washington scene a very long, long time. Consequently, it shouldn’t be unexpected for him to learn a few lessons concerning various ways of making money and how to benefit the most from it.

Not unusual, tax scheming and avoidance intrigues goes on all the time. However, when an individual is in a position of authority and public notoriety, the perception of funny business often leaves a discomforting taste.

Joe hasn’t yet been administered the presidential oath of office, and already suspicious behavior is beginning to surround him. Actually, it was before, but he wasn’t the president elect then.

Mike Bibb lives in Safford.

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