Blaine’s Bulletin: House Directed to Open Impeachment Inquiry into President Biden
Washington, September 15, 2023
This week, Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy directed three House committees to open an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden. The announcement follows alarming allegations and evidence regarding undisclosed foreign business dealings involving the president and his family. It is important to note that an impeachment inquiry does not automatically trigger an impeachment vote on the House floor. It is the process the House uses to collect and evaluate as much information as possible before the committees of jurisdiction decide whether to move articles of impeachment.
As I said during previous impeachment proceedings, impeachment should not serve as a political maneuver. These inquiries must focus on solid evidence of illegal activity. In recent months, the House Oversight, Judiciary, and Ways and Means Committees have uncovered extremely concerning evidence that suggests Joe Biden, while serving as Vice President, and his family accepted millions of dollars in payments from Ukrainian and Chinese companies to alter U.S. policy.
According to U.S. Treasury Department records that were turned over to the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, President Biden’s family received millions of dollars in payments linked to a Chinese energy company. The financial records indicate transactions to the president’s son, Hunter Biden, brother, James Biden, daughter-in-law, Hallie Biden, and a fourth unknown “Biden.”
The better-knows example of potential wrongdoing is in late 2015 when then-Vice President Biden withheld $1 billion of U.S. foreign aid to Ukraine until the country removed its prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin, from office. At the time, Shokin was investigating the Ukrainian energy company Burisma. Importantly, Hunter Biden, who has no experience in the energy sector, was a board member of Burisma. President Biden bragged about his role in Shokin’s firing during a Council of Foreign Relations discussion in January 2018.
Until then-VP Biden forced the prosecutor general out of office, the Obama administration had publicly supported Shokin. According to committee documents, in June 2015, then-Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland wrote Prosecutor General Shokin, applauding him for his anti-corruption efforts. In September of the same year, President Obama’s Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt, publicly stated his desire to work with Shokin in his fight against corruption. Mr. Biden’s apparent use of American tax dollars to remove a prosecutor investigating the company paying his son to sit on its board is, at the very least, worth further investigation.
The list of concerning evidence goes on and on.
Unfortunately, throughout the investigation, the Biden administration has withheld information and refused to cooperate with Congressional committees. Here is where the impeachment inquiry comes into play. It gives the House more authority and tools to obtain information the administration has withheld from the public. Once Congress reviews those facts, it is up to Chairmen Jim Jordan, Jamie Comer, and Jason Smith to determine if the evidence meets the high bar of impeachment. If it does, the committees will vote on whether to move forward with a vote on the House floor.
Given the reckless nature with which former-Speaker Nancy Pelosi pursued articles of impeachment in the past, it would be easy to say the House should move forward with articles of impeachment. All it took for her were campaign documents from Hillary Clinton and Adam Schiff’s countless lies to rush to the floor. Using the historically low bar Nancy Pelosi set as Speaker will further deteriorate faith in our public institutions. The Constitution doesn’t allow for impeachment just because the president is horrible at his job.
This is an extremely serious matter that deserves appropriate consideration. Impeaching a president is generally bad for our standing globally and can drive a deep wedge in the American people. However, if the evidence our committees continue to produce proves the president participated in high crimes and misdemeanors, we must move forward for the good of the country.