Wednesday 13 December 2023

One House Republican Is ‘Struggling’ With Biden Impeachment Inquiry Vote

 With the GOP-led House expected to vote on formalizing the corruption-focused impeachment inquiry against President Joe Biden this week, one Republican member said on Monday he is “struggling” with how to proceed.

Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO), who has criticized the probe in the past and could break with the vast majority of his party, explained to CNN that the way the White House rebuffed subpoenas and interview requests has raised some concerns with him.

“I’m struggling right now, I have to tell you,” Buck told anchor Erin Burnett, who asked how he plans to vote. “On the one hand, I have come out strongly and said there is no direct evidence linking President Biden to the activities of Hunter Biden,” the president’s son.

“And I have, at the same time, the White House who recently sent a letter after these committees issued subpoenas to the White House,” Buck added. “The White House sent a letter back and said, you haven’t held an impeachment inquiry vote yet, and we’re not going to give you any records until you pass an impeachment inquiry. I think that is an absolutely wrong position and it’s a delay tactic which would necessitate Congress going to the courts and having the courts enforce the subpoenas.”

He continued, “So, I wish the White House hadn’t done that. I don’t think there is direct evidence. I’m struggling, and I want to read the resolution before making a final decision on whether to vote for it or not.”

Three panels — the Oversight, Judiciary, and Ways and Means Committees — have led the impeachment probe since mid-September, when then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) announced the endeavor. Congressional investigators have been looking into whether the business practices of Biden’s family members fostered corruption in government — spurred by a money trail showing millions of dollars from foreign countries — as well as the Department of Justice’s handling of a criminal probe into Hunter Biden.


Richard Sauber, special counsel to the president, wrote to impeachment leaders in mid-November condemning what he described as “Congressional harassment of the President.” He also called on investigators to withdraw their subpoenas and interview requests while noting the “Constitution requires that the full House authorize an impeachment inquiry before a committee may utilize compulsory process pursuant to the impeachment power — a step the Republican House Majority has so far refused to take.”

Last week, House Republicans unveiled their resolution to formalize the impeachment inquiry, a step Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) described as necessary to combat alleged “stonewalling” by the White House, and released a resolution for authorizing the enforcement of subpoenas from the GOP chairmen leading the probe. A vote could take place as soon as Wednesday.

With all Democrats likely to vote against it, Republicans in the majority have a slim margin — just a few votes if some GOP members defect — by which they can prevail. There have been some GOP skeptics besides Buck, particularly among moderates in districts won by Biden in 2020.

Buck, who is not seeking re-election in 2024, warned against “retribution politics and retribution impeachments,” adding that he opposed the impeachment efforts against former President Donald Trump. He also appeared to break with Johnson, who has said the evidence gathered so far demands the impeachment inquiry continue.

“I also think that the evidence does not warrant an impeachment at this point,” Buck said. “We are talking about an impeachment inquiry, and that is a more formal way of beginning the process. I still have reservations about that until you have some evidence that links Joe Biden’s actions with the money that Hunter Biden received.”

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