Hunter Biden defied a congressional subpoena from House investigators Wednesday, but nevertheless may have “given up the store,” according to one leading House Republican.
President Joe Biden’s son—indicted last week on federal tax charges—didn’t do a deposition, but did a press conference outside the Capitol, saying his father wasn’t “financially involved” in his business.
The qualifier suggested the president was involved in Hunter Biden’s business activity, said Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, a member of the House Judiciary Committee–one of three House panels authorized to conduct an impeachment inquiry into the president.
“It was noteworthy today that when Hunter Biden was avoiding coming before the House Judiciary Committee and did a show press conference on the steps of the Capitol, that he said his dad wasn’t involved financially with his business dealings. That was an important tell,” Roy told The Daily Signal in an interview on Capitol Hill Wednesday.
Hunter Biden told reporters outside the Capitol that Republicans “have tried to dehumanize me, all to embarrass and damage my father.”
“My father was not financially involved in my business, not as a practicing lawyer, not as a board member of Burisma, not in my partnership with a private Chinese businessman, not in my investments at home or abroad, and certainly not as an artist,” Hunter Biden added.
Burisma is the Ukrainian energy firm where Hunter Biden was a board member making at least $50,000 per month at a time when then-Vice President Joe Biden oversaw the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy.
Roy said the House committees need an impeachment inquiry to fully investigate President Biden’s potential involvement and enrichment from his family members’ business activity.
“I think Hunter Biden might have given up the store there a little bit,” Roy said. “First of all, we don’t know if that’s true. Second, even if it is true, the fact that he put that modifier in there tells you that he knows full well that Joe Biden was involved with his peddling of the Biden family name to profit himself, to profit the family, selling access. It’s not like this is the United Kingdom here or Israel. This is China, this is Ukraine, when we are neck deep in all of this stuff.”
The House Oversight and Accountability Committee has released evidence showing that payments from one of Hunter Biden’s business went directly to Joe Biden. Before that, the House released information showing that the president’s brother James Biden made “loan repayments” of at least $240,000 linked to his brother’s business. The payments came before Joe Biden was elected president.
Hunter Biden’s attorney Abbe Lowell said in a statement to The Hill that the payments from Hunter Biden were for a truck, “The truth is Hunter’s father helped him when he was struggling financially due to his addiction and could not secure credit to finance a truck. When Hunter was able to, he paid his father back and took over the payments himself.” Meanwhile, the White House has dismissed the payments from James Biden as just a loan repayment between brothers.
“Democrats do not want us to learn about it. They want to shove this aside and say this is just Hunter being Hunter,” Roy said. “The fact of the matter is, Hunter kind of gave up the game a little bit today in using the word financial.”
The House Oversight and Accountability Committee released bank records that showed Biden family members owned multiple shell companies that raked in more than $20 million in foreign money, largely while Joe Biden was vice president.
During a press briefing Wednesday, a reporter asked White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre if the president attempted to talk him out of defying a subpoena.
“The president was familiar with what his son had to say today,” Jean-Pierre said. “Look, he is proud of his son. He and the first lady are proud of his son, the way he has focused on rebuilding his life back.”
Hunter Biden has said he would only testify in a public hearing, not in a private deposition because he doesn’t want Republicans to cherry pick his responses. House Republicans contend a private deposition—with his lawyer present—would get to the facts.
Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., said it doesn’t work that way.
“Poor, poor Hunter. He was only getting a couple of million dollars a year selling access to his father. Here’s the deal,” Biggs told The Daily Signal during an interview on Capitol Hill.
“His lawyer keeps saying he’ll come in if he can get a public hearing. You are not entitled to—as a witness—and order a committee to have a hearing at your convenience. We issued a subpoena,” Biggs added. “That’s an order to appear before Congress. Failure to do so subjects you to contempt citation and prosecution. He cannot say he didn’t have the opportunity to testify. He stood out there doing a press conference and doing the same spin.”
Fred Lucas is chief news correspondent and manager of the Investigative Reporting Project for The Daily Signal. Reproduced with permission. Original here.