A Guilty Verdict for Hunter Biden Weighs on a Worried President Biden

Hunter Biden was waiting for his father on the tarmac.

He had just been convicted on three felony gun charges by a jury in Wilmington, Del., his hometown. His father had hastily rearranged his schedule and rushed up from Washington.

Within hours of the verdict, President Biden traveled home, disembarked from Marine One and embraced his son. The president hugged Hunter Biden’s son and wife, as well, and bent over to kiss the head of his grandson, Beau Biden.

To call the relationship between father and son battle tested is an understatement.

Together they have survived the deaths of Mr. Biden’s first wife, eldest daughter and eldest son. They have weathered the fallout of crack addiction and alcohol abuse that has plagued Hunter Biden as well as several other members of the family. Over the past three years, they have been targeted by Republicans who have accused them of corruption and financial crimes.

But for all of the challenges that have tested them and ultimately brought them closer together, a guilty verdict in a federal courtroom — rendered in the middle of Mr. Biden’s final presidential campaign — is a first.

People close to Mr. Biden say he still believes in his son and his ability to stay clean. Hunter Biden has maintained that he has been sober since 2019. But the president has come to terms with the fact that there will be no easy end to his son’s legal problems.

He has also grown more resigned and worried than ever about what the future might hold for his son, the people said, speaking on condition of anonymity to relay private conversations.

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