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Republican impeachment probe 'baseless,' US president's son Hunter Biden says

Published 02/28/2024, 06:01 AM
Updated 02/28/2024, 11:58 PM
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, is seen as he makes a surprise appearance at a House Oversight Committee markup and meeting to vote on whether to hold Biden in contempt of Congress for failing to respond to a request to testify

By Makini Brice

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden struck a defiant tone on Wednesday at a Republican-led House of Representatives impeachment inquiry into his father, calling it a "baseless" partisan pursuit against his family.

"For more than a year, your committees have hunted me in your partisan political pursuit of my dad," the younger Biden said, according to prepared testimony released before the closed-door hearing.

"You do not have evidence to support the baseless and MAGA-motivated conspiracies about my father because there isn't any," Hunter Biden said, referring to the "Make America Great Again" slogan of his father's likely November election opponent, Donald Trump.

Asked how the hearing had gone as he left the building, Hunter Biden replied, "Great."

Republicans, who narrowly control the House, are pushing ahead with their impeachment inquiry even after a person who provided accusations at the heart of their case was charged with lying to the FBI.

The hearing, which lasted nearly seven hours, came three days before the U.S. government will run out of money to keep some agencies open if Congress fails to act by week's end.

Investigators asked Hunter Biden, 54, about his business activities, including his role with Chinese firm CEFC and on the board of Ukrainian energy company Burisma, and his personal life.

Hunter Biden's attorney, Abbe Lowell, said, "The Republican members wanted to spend more time talking about my client's addiction than they could ask any question that had anything to do what they call their impeachment inquiry."

Hunter Biden has publicly discussed his past struggles with cocaine addiction.

House Republicans have been probing the Biden family's business dealings and have cited claims the former FBI informant made that he has now been charged with lying about, with prosecutors warning that he had contact with Russian intelligence agencies.

Lawmakers said there would be a public hearing with Hunter Biden, though they did not provide details.

"I think this was a great deposition for us," said James Comer, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, one of the panels at the center of the inquiry, adding later: "So this impeachment inquiry will now go to the next phase, which is a public hearing."

House Republicans allege that Biden, a Democrat, and his family improperly profited from policy decisions Biden participated in as vice president during President Barack Obama's administration in 2009-17. So far they have not presented evidence to back up these claims.

The White House has denied wrongdoing and says the probe is politically motivated.

Trump has publicly encouraged the impeachment inquiry. Trump was the only U.S. president to be impeached twice, though he was acquitted both times by the Senate.

Most witnesses to testify to the inquiry have said the president was not involved nor had any direct or indirect financial interest in his family's business activities.

Prosecutors have questioned the credibility of the former informant, Alexander Smirnov, who is now charged with lying to the FBI.

"He is actively peddling new lies that could impact U.S. elections after meeting with Russian intelligence officials in November," prosecutors wrote in a court document.

House Republicans downplayed the arrest and prosecution. House Democrats, meanwhile, said it was proof the impeachment inquiry should be abandoned.

It is not clear when or if House Republicans will make a decision on whether to draft articles of impeachment against the president.

© Reuters. Hunter Biden, son of U.S. President Joe Biden, arrives for a closed deposition with members of the Republican-led House Oversight Committee conducting an impeachment inquiry into the president, at the O'Neill House Office Building in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2024. REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

Hardline Republicans have publicly called for the impeachment of Biden and other Cabinet officials. Earlier this month, the House approved the impeachment of Alejandro Mayorkas, Biden's top border official, accusing him of failing to enforce border laws. The Senate has not yet taken it up.

Hunter Biden faces other legal challenges. Prosecutors have levied charges related to tax fraud and for illegally owning a firearm as a drug user. The younger Biden, who has spoken publicly about previous substance abuse issues, has pleaded not guilty in both cases.

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Very credible source for this story....
Lol, maybe. but his images are all. over the internet. Hard to have any credibility on what he says. Not to mean other politicians against him has any credibility either.
This admin is the laughing stock of the world. This is the beginning of the end. Roman Empire decline. All these wars and corruption will have to be accounted for shortly. tic tic
No infact the world are hoping that biden administration will stay, because needs a sane administration not an administration based on fraud, lies and deception
Thank you Ken, I needed a good chuckle to start my morning.
 The world?  Must be Hamas & all terrorists
of course it's baseless.. even the republicans have admitted they have no evidence whatsoever...
Well, if the un-bias, crack head, prostitute addicted son of the president says so it must be true.
Pointing out someone's lack of English proficiency is not an ad-hominem attack, horseface.
"home school dropout" .....How do you know?
Educated guess.
The only way to save the party now, is to install President Harris today. Another month of this, and it will be too late. Nothing left to save.
Install. Goober.
We want Kamala Harris now. We need President Harris now ! She has been patiently waiting to be the first Female and second black president. Time for the next generation now, the circus follow the current Administration is hurting the Democrat party. Joe's losing more Arabs, youth & women voters everyday this goes on. President Harris's Administration will put a stop to the chaos and losing voters daily.
We want Kamala Harris now !! We need President Harris now ! She has been patiently waiting to be the first Female and second black president. Take the baggage out now, this continuous circus follow the Bidens is killing the party. Joe's baggage is losing more Arabs, youth & women voters everyday this goes on. President Harris's Administration will put a stop to the circus and bleeding off voters.
It seems the whole show is falling apart republicans key source on which they have told anybody who wanted to listen that he was 100% credible turned out to work for the russian intellegence….shame on the republicans for continuing this charade with 0 evidence against Biden.
How much do you get paid to spam this stuff?
 the truth does not cost a thing
Like father like son
How so? Anything those of us living in the real world can scrutinize?
If hunter drops dead today followed by biden the world will be a better place. Kamala mcconnel schumer pelosi newsome cheney bush obama….Theres lots more the world would be a better place if they all just dropped dead. Youre all unamerican fu
wow.. a maga-spellchecker.. they must be keeping you busy...
You’re all fake Americans, enabling corrupt, tyrannical dictators grow up you traitorous fools.
No im staying right here to fight the garbage like you - my anger comes from the corruption and disregard of the constitution you hack.
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