Left-leaning journalist Anne Applebaum was questioned on Wednesday about her dismissal of Hunter Biden’s laptop before the 2020 presidential election, since contents of the laptop have now been confirmed by major outlets like The New York Times and The Washington Post.
At a “Disinformation and the Erosion of Democracy” conference at the University of Chicago, college freshman Daniel Schmidt pressed Applebaum about her past writing on the president’s son’s laptop.
“Those who live outside the Fox News bubble and intend to remain there do not, of course, need to learn any of this stuff,” Applebaum wrote in October 2020, Schmidt read to her.
“A poll, later after that, found that if voters knew about the content of the laptop, 16% of Joe Biden voters would have acted differently,” the school newspaper editor continued.
“Do you think the media acted inappropriately when they instantly dismissed Hunter Biden’s laptop as ‘Russian disinformation,’ and what can we learn from that in ensuring that what we label as ‘disinformation’ is truly disinformation, and not reality?” he pressed Applebaum.
The Atlantic writer again dismissed the laptop story, this time claiming the Biden family’s business dealings are uninteresting and irrelevant to a presidential election.
“My problem with Hunter Biden’s laptop is, I think, totally irrelevant. I mean, it’s not whether it’s ‘disinformation’ … I don’t think Hunter Biden’s business relationships have anything to do with who should be President of the United States,” she said. “So, I don’t find it to be interesting. That would be my problem with it, that being a major news story.”
WATCH The Atlantic’s @anneapplebaum refuse to answer @RealDSchmidt's🔥🔥 question about Hunter Biden’s laptop during @UChicago’s “Disinformation and the Erosion of Democracy” conference! pic.twitter.com/1OgXBBiiI0
— The Chicago Thinker (@ThinkerChicago) April 6, 2022
The clip went viral, garnering over 1.5 million views in a matter of hours.
Schmidt responded to the exchange on his Twitter account. “[Anne Applebaum], who we are supposed to believe is some esteemed and highly intelligent journalist, cannot even answer a basic question posed by me, a college freshman,” he wrote, adding that moderator David Axelrod proceeded “to quickly end the session.”
.@AnneApplebaum, who we are supposed to believe is some esteemed and highly intelligent journalist, cannot even answer a basic question posed by me, a college freshman. @DavidAxelrod proceeds to quickly end the session. https://t.co/Jkhb2k4pSe
— Daniel Schmidt (@RealDSchmidt) April 7, 2022
In late March, the Washington Post joined the Times “in verifying some of the contents pulled off of a laptop belonging to Hunter Biden and abandoned at a Delaware computer store in 2019,” The Daily Wire reported. Notably, the story, first broken by the New York Post ahead of the 2020 presidential election, was widely dismissed by the mainstream media as fake news and even censored on Twitter:
The confirmations by the major news publications come weeks apart and roughly 18 months after the New York Post broke stories on Biden’s overseas business dealings, citing information from the laptop. The NY Post’s stories, published weeks before the 2020 election, were censored on social media and downplayed as likely products of Russian propaganda. At the time, neither Biden nor his father, now the President of the United States, claimed that the laptop or its contents were fake.