The Atlantic’s Anne Applebaum: Hunter Biden’s Laptop Information Is Irrelevant to Who Should Be President

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Conference at the University of Chicago: DISINFORMATION AND THE EROSION OF DEMOCRACY

President Barack Obama and Maria Ressa were present at University of Chicago Institute of Politics/The Atlantic conference on Disinformation and the Erosion of Democracy (video is set to begin with a question about the Hunter Biden laptop controversy, but the entire video is available). YouTube Tips ⓘ

At The University of Chicago Institute of Politics conference DISINFORMATION AND THE EROSION OF DEMOCRACY on Wednesday, April 6, 2022, a question from University of Chicago freshman Daniel Schmidt (sp?), directed to The Atlantic journalist Anne Applebaum, asked whether the media acted inappropriately in handling the Hunter Biden laptop information before the 2020 Presidential Election.

QUESTION: In 2020 you wrote, ‘those who live outside the Fox News bubble do not of course need to learn any of this stuff about Hunter Biden’ — referring to his laptop, of course. A poll later, after that, found out that if voters knew about the content of the laptop, 16% of Joe Biden voters would have acted differently. Now, of course, we know a few weeks ago, the New York Times confirmed that the content is real. Do you think the media acted in appropriately when they instantly dismissed Hunter Biden’s laptop as Russian disinformation, and what can be learned from that in ensuring that what we label as disinformation is truly disinformation, and not reality.

APPLEBAUM ANSWER: My problem with Hunter Biden’s laptop is I think it’s totally irrelevant … I mean it’s not whether it’s disinformation … I didn’t think the Hunter Biden’s business relationships have anything to do with who should be President of the United States … so, I didn’t find, I don’t find it to be interesting. That would be my problem with that as a major news story.

At the conference, President Barack Obama, Anne Applebaum, David Axelrod, Jeffrey Goldberg, Adrienne LaFrance, and Nobel Prize–winning journalist Maria Ressa discuss disinformation and the threats it poses to democracy in the first part of a conference presented by The Atlantic and the University of Chicago Institute of Politics.

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