Representative James Comer, the chairman of the House Oversight and Accountability Committee, said on Sunday that the prospects of impeaching President Joe Biden have risen after House Republicans got feedback from their constituents during the Thanksgiving recess.
The GOP has been examining Biden for allegedly misusing his authority and profiting from his son Hunter Biden’s overseas business activities in China and Ukraine when he was vice president under former President Barack Obama, including allegations of receiving bribes. The White House and Hunter Biden’s lawyers have dismissed the allegations, while Democrats have denounced the GOP’s impeachment investigations for lacking any solid evidence against the president.
The Judiciary Committee will decide whether to draft any impeachment articles against Biden for the House to vote on, after the impeachment inquiry is finished. Comer has stated that a vote could occur by early 2024.
Comer, a Republican from Kentucky, was asked by Maria Bartiromo on Fox News’ Sunday Morning Futures if he believes he has enough votes in the House to initiate a formal impeachment inquiry against Biden.
Comer responded that moderate House Republicans are now more open to vote for a Biden impeachment inquiry because they returned to their districts over Thanksgiving and heard from their constituents at Walmart.
“One thing that’s changed is this. A great thing happened during Thanksgiving. The members returned to their districts, many of them for the first time, and engaged for the first time in over 10 weeks. And they met people in Walmart and people on Main Street. So they listened to their constituents. They were like, ‘How did the Bidens manage to receive millions and millions of dollars from our adversaries around the world and did they not pay taxes on it?’ So they listened to their constituents, ‘Yes we want you to proceed, we want to know the truth and demand the Bidens to be held accountable for public corruption,'” Comer said. “So I’m confident we’re going to have the votes to proceed with this impeachment inquiry.
Newsweek has contacted Comer and Biden via email for comment
As part of the impeachment inquiry, Comer has subpoenaed several members of the president’s family, including his brother James Biden and his son Hunter Biden. Hunter Biden has been ordered to appear for a deposition on December 13, with the president’s brother currently scheduled for December 6.
While speaking to Fox News last week, Comer said the Oversight panel has uncovered “many smoking guns” during the probe. However, several House members have come out and said they are not persuaded by the evidence to convince them to vote to impeach Biden over corruption allegations.
Representative Ken Buck, a Colorado Republican who is part of the hardline Freedom Caucus and twice voted against impeaching former President Donald Trump, wrote in a September opinion piece for The Washington Post: “Trump’s impeachment in 2019 was a disgrace to the Constitution and a disservice to Americans. The GOP’s reprise in 2023 is no better.”
Comer criticized Buck on Sunday while answering Bartiromo’s question about needing a majority vote in order to impeach Biden, “The majority is so slim, even less now with George Santos being expelled this week, right?”
“Yeah, it’s tough,” Comer agreed. “I think we could lose one or two members. I mean, Ken Buck, he votes no on everything. He’s certainly doing everything he can to try out to be the next anchor for MSNBC.”
Newsweek has contacted Buck via email for comment
Due to the GOP’s narrow majority in the House, if any articles of impeachment make it to a vote on the floor, near-unanimous Republican support would be required to reach the 218 vote threshold. No House Democrat is expected to support the move.
This is not the first time the alleged evidence in the impeachment inquiry into Biden faced criticism.
In October, Comer released what he claimed was evidence of Biden’s corruption, sharing an image of a $200,000 check sent to the president by his brother James Biden and sister-in-law Sara in 2018. Marked as a loan repayment, the check was issued on the same date in 2018 when Americore Health LLC wired $200,000 into James Biden’s bank account.
Since Comer announced the discovery, many have taken to X, formerly Twitter, to ridicule the congressman’s claim, noting that the discovery of the check made out to Biden clearly indicated that the money was sent as a “loan repayment” and before he was president.
Ian Sams, the White House spokesperson for oversight and investigations, wrote in an X post in October that Comer was “desperate” to distract from the ongoing inability of Republicans to select a House speaker after Kevin McCarthy was removed from the speakership.
Comer maintains that the loan repayment raises questions about whether the president personally benefited from his family’s business ventures.
“Even if this was a personal loan repayment, it’s still troubling that Joe Biden’s ability to be paid back by his brother depended on the success of his family’s shady financial dealings,” he said in his video statement announcing the discovery in October.