Who is Eric Schwerin? What to know about Hunter Biden’s business partner
Eric Schwerin became one of Hunter Biden’s closest friends, business associates, and an emotional “pillar” to the president’s troubled second son over a 20-year relationship that transformed the enigmatic moneyman into a D.C. power player.
The 52-year-old fixer — who made at least 27 visits to the White House and other official venues during the Obama/Biden presidency — is likely to be a focus of a looming Republican House probe into Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings.
While Schwerin has not personally been accused of any wrongdoing, his deep personal and financial ties to both Joe and Hunter Biden continue to cast doubt on past claims from President Biden that he had no involvement in his son’s business dealings.
Hunter Biden and Schwerin likely first met when they worked in President Bill Clinton’s Commerce Department.
Schwerin arrived at the agency in 1994 with a sterling resume, having earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. from the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University. Before graduating he spent a year in Czechoslovakia as an English teacher.
Schwerin rose through the ranks quickly, becoming an International Trade Specialist in 1997, before claiming the title of senior policy advisor to the Secretary for International Trade in 1999.
“I worked with him in the Department of Commerce and I always found him to be a good and decent guy. A nice pleasant guy,” one former colleague told The Post of Schwerin.
Hunter Biden was the same age as Schwerin and fresh out of Yale Law School, where he had won admission after President Clinton personally lobbied Dean Guido Calabresi to admit him. After bouncing around some cushy banking gigs in Delaware, he landed at Commerce as a “policy director specializing in the burgeoning Internet economy,” according to the New Yorker.
The pair hit it off. When George W. Bush became president, Hunter Biden left government and started a lobbying shop with William Oldaker, a D.C. lawyer who worked on his father’s aborted 1988 presidential campaign. In 2002 Schwerin joined them and became a partner in the company, lobbying disclosure forms show.
In 2008 Sen. Barack Obama sought more than $3.4 million in congressional earmarks for Hunter’s clients, the Washington Post reported at the time.
Schwerin stayed with the lobbying firm until 2008. That same year Joe Biden was elected vice president of the United States and both Hunter Biden and Schwerin were ready for their next moves.
Conveniently, in 2004, Schwerin had purchased a three-bedroom townhouse in the upscale Glover Park neighborhood of DC. The area, known for ambassador’s residences and stately homes, is a 20-minute walk from the Naval Observatory, where the vice president’s residence is located.
Schwerin visited the residence at least 13 times during Joe Biden’s vice presidency, mostly for official parties and receptions.
On June 25, 2009, Hunter Biden founded his investment firm Rosemont Seneca Partners with Chris Heinz, the ketchup fortune heir and stepson of John Kerry and Devon Archer, a one-time Abercrombie & Fitch model. Schwerin was enlisted to be its president. The fund aggressively pursued deals in Russia, Romania, Ukraine, China and elsewhere.
During the eight years of Joe Biden’s vice presidency, Schwerin gradually became a de facto financial planner for the wider Biden family.
Emails from Hunter Biden’s abandoned hard drive show Schwerin moving money on behalf of father and son and helping Hunter Biden handle family expenses. Schwerin received Joe Biden’s “Delaware tax refund check” while he was vice president and the two talked by phone about the Joe Biden’s mortgage.
“He did financial stuff for the family but that’s really all I know,” Margaret Campbell, a former special assistant to Jill Biden, previously told The Post.
After Hunter Biden’s aunt Valerie Biden Owens finished a four-month stint at the United Nations in September 2016, Schwerin sent a memo to Hunter Biden outlining a plan for Aunt Val to handle consulting projects at the Biden Foundation and University of Delaware, with each gig paying $12,500 per month, according to Miranda Devine’s book “Laptop from Hell.”
The Bidens returned the favor, using their influence in the White House to help Schwerin land a plum presidential appointment to the Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad in 2015.
By the end of Biden’s term as vice president, Schwerin had become a DC power player. His birthday was noted in Politico Playbook and he served as chairman of 826DC, a trendy non-profit dedicated to helping students develop “creative and expository writing skills.”
Photos from 2014 show him partying in D.C. with John McGrail at a reception for the sports docu-series “American Muscle.” That same year Hunter Biden successfully lobbied for McGrail to be named deputy counsel to the vice president.
During a 2016 dinner at Graffiato in D.C., Joe Biden popped in to say hello to Schwerin, causing a small stir among onlookers, the Washington Post reported at the time.
When Hunter Biden’s brother Beau died in May 2015, Schwerin acted as a personal secretary. Multiple well-wishers looking to send their condolences sent them to Schwerin, asking him to forward them to Hunter Biden. Schwerin’s parents — Joan and David — reached out directly.
On Facebook Schwerin posted a photo of Beau Biden hugging his father.
“I am so sorry Eric for all the pain you are going through be strong you are Hunters pillar,” Schwerin’s friend Ravi Kini wrote in a comment to the photo.
Schwerin was also a handy open wallet for Biden politics. He first became a Democratic donor in 2003 and as his relationship with Hunter grew, so did his generosity. And no federal candidate benefited more than Joe Biden. Schwerin donated at least $5,700 to him, split between his 2008 and 2020 presidential campaigns, Federal Election Commission records show.
There was an additional $3,900 from Schwerin to the Obama/Biden presidential campaign and another $5,400 to Hillary Clinton for her doomed 2016 race against Donald Trump, FEC records show.
Francis Person, a longtime aide to Vice President Biden, who ran for Congress in 2016, received $2,700 from Schwerin as well. Person’s sister, Anne Marie Person, was a former Rosemont Seneca employee who Biden hired directly onto his vice presidential staff in 2014.
Schwerin remains an active Democratic contributor, sprinkling more than $46,000 to federal candidates around the country between 2003 and 2021, favoring moderates in the mold of Biden.
Delaware Sen. Chris Coons received $1,000, as did Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin, Colorado Sen. Michael Bennett and Rhode Island’s Sheldon Whitehouse.
As Rosemont Seneca’s business began reaching out into foreign lands, Schwerin began visiting the White House and other official residences.
His first visit was in October 2009 with Evan Ryan, Vice President Biden’s assistant for intergovernmental affairs and public liaison. He would meet Biden himself in the West Wing in November 2010, The Post exclusively reported. Between 2009 and the end of 2016, Schwerin made at least 27 official visits to the White House and other official locations, Obama administration visitor logs show.
Just months after Schwerin met in the West Wing with Kellen Suber, an executive assistant to Vice President Biden, Hunter was feted in Hong Kong with his partner Jim Bulger by Che Feng, a shadowy Chinese tycoon identified in the hard drive as “Superchairman.” Feng is the son-in- law of Dai Xianglong, a high-ranking Chinese Communist Party official.
Schwerin met with Joe Biden aides in March and May of 2013. In June Hunter Biden entered into an agreement with Chinese businessman Jonathan Li to create BHR Partners.
Joe Biden has consistently denied any involvement in his son’s shady foreign businesses.
“I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings,” he said in 2019.
“If corporate media had any journalistic integrity, they would demand that Joe Biden explain why Hunter’s business partner, Eric Schwerin, was given access to the White House at least 27 times,” Sen Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) told The Post this week.
Schwerin and Hunter Biden had an apparent falling out in 2017, harshly-written emails from the hard drive show.
“I terminated you as an at will employee for gross negligence. Also if you continue to sit with friends of mine and relationships that are mine and defame me I will sue you for defamation of character and embezzlement,” Hunter snarled to Schwerin in a December 2017 email. “We are no longer just done as business partners you should consider moving to somewhere in Florida I’ll never go. Naples is perfect you can live in perpetual time share with your parents and talk about what a horrible person I am.”
Today, Schwerin continues to run an offshoot of Rosemont Seneca. In 2018 he founded RSP Investments, which a sparse website describes as a “broker-dealer focused on investment banking advisory and capital raising in the following sectors.”
He doesn’t appear to be married. A Facebook profile shows him frequently traveling solo to scenic vacation spots sometimes accompanied by his dog Regis.
The White House declined to comment for this story. Eric Schwerin did not respond to a request for comment.