House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has announced that the House will open an impeachment inquiry against President Joe Biden over his involvement with his son, Hunter Biden, and his business interests.
The Speaker made the announcement Tuesday morning the same day news leaked that he was expected to endorse such a move later this week. That was supposed to be in a meeting coming up on Thursday, but McCarthy seems to have moved up his timeline after the news broke.
“This logical next step will give our committees the full power to gather all the facts and answers for the American public,” McCarthy said Tuesday.
The top Republican in the U.S. House is expected to endorse the growing calls for an impeachment inquiry of Joe Biden this week, according to reports, marking a major shift in the House’s investigations into the president and his son’s business dealings.
According to Punchbowl News this morning, McCarthy is signaling the endorsement to members of his caucus. The official endorsement is said to be coming during a closed-door meeting with Republicans later this week.
This is, of course, a huge step for McCarthy and House Republicans. The investigations haven’t uncovered any direct evidence that Biden personally profited off his son’s foreign work.
It remains to be seen whether there are 218 House Republicans who’d vote to authorize an impeachment inquiry. Several moderate Republicans — including Reps. Ken Buck (Colo.) and Don Bacon (Neb.) — have been skeptical of the need for an impeachment inquiry. So McCarthy will have to really work this vote if that’s the direction he wants to go.
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) has said if McCarthy stands in the way of the impeachment process, he’d seek to remove the California Republican from the speakership. Gaetz plans to take to the House floor today to take McCarthy to task for his performance during this Congress. He’ll then hold a 12:45 p.m. press call about his “vision” for the House “moving forward.” We’ll see if Gaetz, who loathes McCarthy, follows through.
McCarthy’s plan to tacitly endorse an impeachment inquiry dramatically complicates the crush of legislation the House has to complete this month. For example, the White House will probably be less likely to work with McCarthy now that he’s effectively endorsing a process to remove Biden from office. House Democrats, once seen as McCarthy’s bulwark against being forced out as speaker via the “motion to vacate,” probably won’t come to his rescue if a conservative moves against the California Republican under these circumstances.
An impeachment inquiry does not mean articles of impeachment will be filed. Instead, it opens up the powers of the House in diving further into investigations and provides more leverage against legal deterrents like Executive Privilege. Republicans will have more tools at their disposal for investigating Biden and his connection with his son’s business.
Many, including some Republicans, believe the House Oversight Committee has yet to find a “silver bullet” to firmly prove Joe Biden directly benefitted from Hunter’s business dealings, but recent evidence dumps from James Comer and the Oversight Committee have shown there was indeed some coordination between Hunter’s business associates and the then-Vice President’s office.
🚨 BREAKING 🚨— Oversight Committee (@GOPoversight) September 6, 2023
Joe Biden’s VP staff colluded with Hunter’s business partner on Burisma corruption media response.@RepJamesComer is calling on the National Archives to provide complete and unredacted documents related to the Office of the Vice President colluding with the Biden… pic.twitter.com/WtIOR9ITNW
Conservatives in the House have been increasingly vocal about the need for an impeachment inquiry in order to advance the investigations. Many of those conservatives are the same ones who opposed McCarthy’s leadership when the Republicans took control of the House after the 2022 midterms.
But casting a shadow over an impeachment inquiry is simple math.
Republicans have a slim majority in the House and not every Republican appears to be on board with the idea of impeaching Joe Biden. And, even if the articles of impeachment do pass the House, there is virtually zero chance it will have a shot in a Democrat-controlled Senate.
Considering the Republicans will have only one shot and it’s likely to miss, critics of the idea of impeaching Biden consider it a waste of time.
Nancy Pelosi — who led multiple impeachment scams during the last administration — now says it'd be a "waste of time" for Congress to open impeachment inquiries against Biden or his cabinet pic.twitter.com/8xcoruTVxV— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) August 4, 2023
What’s more, the House is already inundated with must-address issues like a spending bill and farm bill. The need to pass those bills complicates the already-fraying relationship between McCarthy’s leadership team and their counterparts in the Democratic caucus.
But the fact that McCarthy is willing to signal support for an impeachment inquiry is a massive step for House Republicans and one that can’t be underestimated. Given that there is no time frame for when articles of impeachment would have to be drafted, Republicans could dive deeper into the growing Biden scandal and make as much information public as possible. The evidence dumps released already are having an impact on Biden’s polling numbers.