September 12, 2023

US Speaker McCarthy calls for formal impeachment inquiry into Biden

US Speaker McCarthy calls for formal impeachment inquiry into Biden

Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday announced that he has instructed three GOP-led committees to launch an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden.

The impeachment probe was brought up on the allegations that Biden directly profited from his son, Hunter’s business deals.

“This logical next step will give our committees the full power to gather all the facts and answers for the American public,” McCarthy said in a brief public appearance.

According to CNBC, the speaker claimed that Biden had lied to the American people about his knowledge of his family’s foreign business dealings.

The inquiry will be led by Republican Rep from Kentucky, James Comer, who chairs the House Oversight Committee, in coordination with Judiciary Committee chair Jim Jordan of Ohio and Missouri Representative, Jason Smith, who chairs the Ways and Means Committee.

Ian Sams, spokesman for the White House counsel’s office, said House Republicans have been investigating Biden for nine months and have turned up no evidence of wrongdoing.

McCarthy apparently abandoned his previous vow that an impeachment inquiry would occur through a vote in the House. 

His decision to direct the committees to launch the investigation without a vote suggests he did not have enough support in the House to move forward.

Senate Republicans are sceptical that the House has revealed enough evidence to justify an impeachment inquiry.

The Republican-led House Oversight committee launched an investigation in January into allegations that Biden profited from his son Hunter’s business dealings while he was vice president. 

Representative Jamie Raskin, the ranking Democrat on the oversight committee, called the GOP investigation “a complete and total bust” in a statement Monday.

“The voluminous evidence they have gathered, including thousands of pages of bank records and suspicious activity reports and hours of testimony from witnesses, overwhelmingly demonstrates no wrongdoing by President Biden and further debunks Republicans’ conspiracy theories,” Raskin said.

McCarthy is under pressure from right-wing members of his party to attack Biden more directly ahead of the 2024 presidential election, demands that are gaining new leverage this fall as Congress faces a looming deadline at the end of the month to avoid a government shutdown.

The House speaker needs to pass a temporary spending measure to avoid a shutdown, but far-right Republicans have demanded action on impeachment in exchange for their support to keep the government operating.