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Joe Biden at a campaign stop on Dec. 2, 2019 in Algona, Iowa. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden told a voter attending one of his campaign events on Thursday that he is "a damn liar" for making unsubstantiated allegations that Biden “sent” his son, Hunter, to work for a Ukrainian gas company in order to sell access to President Obama.

Why it matters: President Trump's request that Ukraine's president announce an investigation into the Biden's dealings in Ukraine is what sparked the impeachment inquiry. Hunter’s role with Ukrainian energy company Burisma did raise conflict-of-interest concerns at the time, but there is no evidence that the former vice president committed "corruption" of any kind in the country, as Trump has claimed.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Details: The man, who identified himself as an 83-year-old retired farmer, said that he had two concerns about Biden: his age and his son's work in Ukraine.

  • Biden responded by saying the man was "too old" to vote for him, challenging him to do push-ups or run if he wanted to "check" his shape.
  • Biden also dismissed the allegations about Hunter as nonsense.

What they're saying: Biden's senior campaign adviser Symone Sanders tweeted in response to the incident: "1) the gentleman is a self identified Warren supporter who said he would vote for the VP in a general election 2) his facts were flat-out wrong and 3) the crowd backed VP Biden up in his response."

  • Sanders denounced "debunked conspiracy theories cooked up by Trump and Rudy Guiliani about Ukraine" and said that "any assertion VP Biden said a word about the gentleman's appearance is making this something it is not."

Go deeper ... Fact check: What Joe and Hunter Biden actually did in Ukraine

Go deeper

U.S. charges 4 Belarus officials with air piracy in journalist's arrest

A Boeing 737-8AS Ryanair passenger planefrom Athens, Greece, that was diverted to Minsk, Belarus, in May. Photo: Petras Malukas/AFP via Getty Images

The Justice Department on Thursday charged four Belarusian government officials with conspiracy to commit aircraft piracy as part of an operation to arrest a dissident Belarusian journalist.

Why it matters: Prosecutors say the officials fabricated a bomb threat aboard a Ryanair flight carrying the journalist Raman Pratasevich last May, forcing it to land in Minsk, Belarus instead.

9 mins ago - World

What Putin's Ukraine options look like

Putin confers with Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty

The Biden administration is framing Russian escalation in Ukraine as almost a foregone conclusion, but the Russians are still at the table and Vladimir Putin may be seeking concessions from the West rather than a military confrontation with Kyiv.

Driving the news: Secretary of State Tony Blinken, who will meet his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov tomorrow in Geneva, contended in a speech Thursday from Berlin that Putin's intentions are clear: "He's laying the groundwork for an invasion because he doesn’t believe Ukraine is a sovereign nation."

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Updated 28 mins ago - Economy & Business

Peloton stock tanks on report of production halt

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Peloton stock fell by as much as 25% on Thursday, following a CNBC report that the connected fitness company will temporarily halt production on its bikes and treadmills.

Why it matters: Peloton is viewed by many as a proxy for consumer behavior in the pandemic era, as its popularity surged when gyms closed and people wanted to exercise at home.