On a Wednesday morning, Hunter Biden, accompanied by his legal team, attended a meeting of the House Oversight Committee. This gathering was organized with the purpose of evaluating a resolution that could hold immense implications for him: if passed, it could lead to a full House vote on his contempt of Congress for resisting a congressional subpoena.
This subpoena is connected to the ongoing impeachment inquiry faced by President Biden. The House Oversight Committee held its markup session at 10 a.m. this morning, the focus of which was this contentious resolution.
The implications of this recommendation for contempt proceedings are serious. Hunter Biden, the President’s son, refused to comply with a subpoena that demanded his presence at a closed-door deposition. This deposition was scheduled to occur before both the House Oversight and Judiciary committees. Echoing this process, the House Judiciary Committee is undertaking a similar markup concerning this measure, which advocates Hunter Biden be considered in contempt of Congress.
Hunter Biden, found himself in the spotlight on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, December 13, 2023. A series of confrontations with Republican investigators looking into his business activities has only amplified his prominence in this narrative. Despite the growing pressure, he remained steadfast in his belief that he will only give his testimony before a congressional committee in a public forum.
Hunter Biden, his legal counsel and Kevin Morris arrived at Capitol Hill to observe the panel’s deliberations on the resolution. If the resolution makes it past the committee’s examination today, insiders suggest that a full contempt of Congress vote could ensue in the coming days on the flooring of the House.
In his opening speech, the Chairman of the House Oversight Committee, James Comer, pointed to substantial evidence suggesting that President Biden was not only aware of, but also partook and profited from his family’s usage of the Biden surname. Comer elaborated that Hunter Biden was expected to be interrogated about this extensive evidence during the deposition, but two rightful subpoenas were defiantly disregarded by him.
James Comer expressed his concern, noting that Hunter Biden’s deliberate non-compliance reflected a criminal act. According to him, this act indisputably amounts to contempt of Congress, and it justifies a referral to a suited U.S. Attorney’s Office for legal proceedings. He emphasized, ‘We will ensure equal treatment for all, irrespective of who they are. The rule of law must apply equally to all Americans, including the Bidens.’
Prior to his deposition, Hunter Biden suggested that he was ready to testify publicly. However, the Chairs of the House Oversight Committee and Judiciary Committee, James Comer and Jim Jordan, respectively, turned down his offer. They maintained their stance that he should not be privy to any special considerations, reminding the gathering that plenty of witnesses had complied and appeared willingly for their depositions and interviews.
Committee Chairs Comer and Jordan gave their word to publicize the transcript of Hunter Biden’s deposition. Nevertheless, Hunter Biden defied the subpoena and went ahead to issue a public statement outside the Capitol. This defiance did not go unnoticed, evoking criticism from stakeholders.
Jamie Raskin, the committee’s ranking member from Maryland and a Democrat, harshly censured this action. He expressed his dismay at the singular event of the U.S. House of Representatives potentially considering the contempt of Congress against a private citizen who was willing to testify in public and under oath on a date of the committee’s selection. Raskin emphasized that Chairman Comer had repeatedly encouraged Hunter Biden to attend a committee hearing, and Hunter agreed in response.
Previously, Chairs Comer and Jordan broadened their investigation to explore the possibility that President Biden had a hand in his son’s tactics to resist being subpoenaed for a deposition. They argued that such conduct might qualify as an impeachable act. Addressing these claims when making his public proclamation, Hunter Biden assured everyone that his father had no fiscal ties with his business ventures.
Hunter Biden went on to stress upon the lack of proof connecting his father financially with his private affairs, confident that the allegation was baseless. He explained in clear terms that the rumor about his father’s involvement with his business was simply untrue because ‘it did not happen’.
Last month, the House formalized their impeachment inquiry against President Biden. The inquiry, which is to unfold under the scrutiny of multiple committee chairs, has drawn attention from a range of stakeholders. Chairs Comer, Jordan and Jason Smith from the House Ways & Means Committee – a Republican from Missouri – are spearheading the proceedings.