As the House returns from August recess with Republicans expected to vote on opening an impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden this month, House Oversight Committee ranking member Jamie Raskin (D-MD) is going on the offensive and circulating a memo to House Democrats combatting the investigations and possible impeachment inquiry.
In the 14-page memo obtained by the Washington Examiner, Raskin lays out his judgment of House Republicans’ probe into Biden. In part, he claims that the information House Republicans have gathered doesn’t show wrongdoing by Biden and that it is an attempt to do former President Donald Trump’s bidding and distract from his legal woes.
Raskin pushes back against the impending impeachment inquiry into Biden in the memo. Over the August recess, Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said the House could open an impeachment inquiry into the president when they return from the break. However, any impeachment inquiry would have to be voted on by the full House.
The inquiry is partly contingent on whether the Biden administration continues to withhold evidence requested by the committee, McCarthy said.
In his memo, Raskin claims that Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-KY) “has resorted to misrepresenting and distorting this huge body of evidence to make baseless and sensationalistic claims,” including that Biden himself has received money from foreign entities.
While Republicans on the committee, led by Comer, have uncovered extensive evidence that Hunter Biden, the president’s son, and other members of the Biden family received millions from foreign oligarchs and companies while Joe Biden was vice president, they haven’t proved any of that money went to the president.
“House Republicans constantly insist that they are investigating President Biden, and not his adult son,” the memo reads. “In that case, we can form an obvious judgment on their investigation: it has been a complete and total bust—an epic flop in the history of congressional investigations. The voluminous evidence they have gathered, including thousands of pages of bank records and suspicious activity reports and hours of testimony from witnesses, overwhelmingly demonstrates no wrongdoing by President Biden and further debunks Republicans’ conspiracy theories.”
Through testimony from Hunter Biden’s former business associate Devon Archer, it was revealed that then-Vice President Joe Biden was on speakerphone with his son and business associates at least 20 times over the course of a decade.
Archer also testified that Hunter Biden was selling the “Biden brand” to foreign companies and oligarchs who believed having Hunter Biden close to them would lead to access to his father. It was also uncovered, through Archer’s testimony and bank records the committee released, that Joe Biden did attend dinner with Hunter Biden and foreign oligarchs who had paid his son on two separate occasions at Cafe Milano in Georgetown. Testimony from Archer further alleged that Joe Biden had coffee with one of his son’s business associates in Beijing.
“Mounting evidence reveals that then-Vice President Joe Biden was ‘the brand’ that his family sold around the world to enrich the Bidens,” a spokesperson for the House Oversight Committee said. “The Oversight Committee has a duty to continue to follow this pattern of corruption and hold President Biden accountable for abusing public office for the financial benefit of his family. Unfortunately, Democrats would rather play Biden family defense lawyer instead of working for the American people. We will continue to work to provide the transparency and accountability that Americans demand and deserve.”
Raskin does not dispute the information the committee has uncovered about Hunter Biden or his business associates but pushes back against the notion that it ties back to Joe Biden.
“Not only does this voluminous evidence fail to even suggest any wrongdoing by President Biden, it in fact proves the opposite,” he said in the memo.
In the memo, Raskin mentions Archer saying he was “not aware of any” wrongdoing by Joe Biden when asked during his transcribed interview before the committee.
Another judgment Raskin raises in the memo is that House Republicans are only investigating the Biden family and contemplating an impeachment inquiry into the president as an attempt to distract people from Trump’s own legal woes.
“This is a transparent effort to boost Donald Trump’s campaign by establishing a false moral equivalency between Trump—the four time-indicted former president now facing 91 federal and state criminal charges, based on a mountain of damning evidence for a shocking range of felonies, including lying to the FBI, endangering national security by illegally keeping classified documents, and conspiring to subvert the U.S. Constitution— and President Biden, against whom there is precisely zero evidence of any wrongdoing whatsoever,” the memo reads.
Raskin quotes statements from Trump over the past year where he has demanded that House Republicans investigate Joe Biden and impeach him.
Despite Raskin’s claims, recent polling shows that the investigations and findings resonate with voters.
Polling from CNN shows that 61% of Americans believe that Joe Biden had at least some involvement in Hunter Biden’s business dealings, 42% say they think he acted illegally, and 18% say he acted unethically but not illegally.