Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has expressed a cautious approach towards the impeachment proceedings against Joe Biden.
During a closed-door meeting with House GOP moderates, Johnson highlighted the lack of sufficient evidence at present to begin formal impeachment proceedings, according to the Washington Post.
This sentiment was echoed by Representative Don Bacon (R-NE), who summarized Johnson’s stance, noting that even a single Democratic vote is unattainable at this point.
“We’ll just go where the evidence goes and we’re not there yet,” said Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.), recapitulating Johnson’s remarks about the inquiry.
“Most of us are saying, look, we can’t even get a single Democratic vote on this right now. I think the voters will reject what they are seeing when it comes to Biden [policies] — but high crimes and misdemeanors? I don’t think we’ve seen that or enough data to really make a good case and I feel like [Johnson] really agreed with us on that,” Bacon added.
Johnson’s reserved approach contrasts with some of his previous accusations against Biden, including claims of Biden using taxpayer resources to benefit his son’s business dealings in Ukraine.
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Johnson, who told reporters that he has been “intellectually consistent” in cautioning against a rushed investigation during a news conference last week, has previously accused Biden of bribing or pressuring a foreign leader.
But in this week’s private meeting with moderates, Johnson appeared to agree with Republican lawmakers who argued that since Biden’s polling numbers have been so weak, there is less of a political imperative to impeach him, according to Bacon and others who attended the meeting.
“Is it pragmatic? Does it make sense? Connecting those dots matter,” Rep. Lori Chavez-DeRemer (R-Ore.) said after the meeting. “So I don’t think it makes sense to move down a road unless those dots can be connected, and I think that’s the message he was trying to send to us which we appreciated.”
As Johnson has stressed thoroughness and specificity in the inquiry, House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) has continued to call for formal impeachment proceedings. He issued subpoenas for Hunter Biden and James Biden on Wednesday, requesting the president’s son and brother appear for depositions, and requested voluntary closed-door interviews with other Biden family members, including Hallie Biden, the widow of Hunter’s older brother Beau with whom Hunter Biden had an affair after his brother died, and Hunter’s wife, Melissa Cohen. Comer issued additional subpoenas on Thursday requesting interviews with several of Hunter Biden’s business associates, including his New York City art gallerist, Georges Bergès, and Elizabeth Naftali, a buyer of Hunter Biden’s art who is also a Democratic donor.
Raj Shah, a spokesperson for the speaker, said Johnson “has consistently praised the work of Chairmen [Jim] Jordan, Comer and [Jason] Smith whose investigations have already demonstrated that the President and White House have repeatedly lied about the Biden family’s business dealings with foreign adversaries. He will support their efforts to follow the facts where they lead.”
Meanwhile, House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer continues to aggressively pursue the investigation, issuing subpoenas to Hunter Biden and other Biden crime family.
House Oversight Chairman James Comer on Thursday issued additional subpoenas to Hunter Biden’s associates Eric Schwerin, Hunter’s art gallerist George Berges and Elizabeth Naftali, the Democrat donor who purchased Hunter’s art.
The new subpoenas come one day after Comer subpoenaed Hunter and James Biden for in-person depositions as part of his Committee’s impeachment inquiry.
The Republican-led Committee on Oversight issued subpoenas to Hunter Biden’s business associates, Eric Schwerin and Mervyn Yan.
It can be recalled that Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) said that the Republican base is “fed up” with party members who refuse to stand firm against Democrats. In her view, the GOP must adopt a more assertive approach to win back the confidence of its base and ensure the nation’s survival.
Greene said, “Our voters are not inspired to vote for a party that wants to play nice and refuses to hold accountable communists who locked everyone down during the scamdemic, violated their free speech and censored us on social media, steals elections, weaponizes the government against (us) it’s political enemies and is persecuting people, rips our border open to the entire world and floods our country with millions of unknown people and terrorists, funds every foreign war but refuses to defend our own border, and sexually grooms our children to the point they are cutting off their own body parts to “change their gender” before they are even finished growing up.”
She added, “The Republican Party is tone deaf and weak.”