House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has directed House Republicans to begin an impeachment of President Joe Biden as he wants Congress to review the president's interactions with his son Hunter and his business dealings.
By launching an impeachment inquiry, that does not mean articles of impeachment have been drafted. But it gives the Committee on the Judiciary the opportunity to investigate President Biden, potentially holding hearings related to the inquiry.
If articles of impeachment are drafted, McCarthy could bring the charges before the full House for a vote, in which only a simple majority is needed to send it to trial in the Senate.
President Donald Trump was impeached by the House twice. He was the third U.S. president to ever be impeached.
Last week, federal prosecutors informed the U.S. District Court for Delaware that they intend to bring a new indictment against Hunter Biden by the end of the month.
Special counsel David Weiss did not reveal what charges could be filed against the president's son. Hunter Biden was previously charged with failing to pay more than $200,000 in taxes on more than $1.5 million in income back in 2017 and 2018, and with illegally owning a gun at a time during which he was allegedly addicted to drugs. He agreed to plead guilty to two misdemeanor tax offenses and enter into a pretrial diversion agreement for the felony firearms offense. However, that agreement with prosecutors unraveled when the judge in the case raised concerns about the deal. The judge called the deal "confusing" and "not straightforward."
"It appears that the president's family has been offered special treatment by Biden's own administration, treatment that not otherwise would have received if they were not related to the president," McCarthy said. "These are allegations of abuse of power, obstruction and corruption and they warrant further investigation by the House of Representatives."
The inquiry comes amid pressure from many House Republicans who say they will not approve keeping the government funded unless the House considers impeaching President Biden. The federal government's budget expires at the end of the month.
Polls suggest Biden, who is running for reelection in 2024, is locked in a tight race with former President Donald Trump, who is currently leading the Republican field. Biden's campaign called the impeachment inquiry "baseless."
"Several members of the Speaker’s own conference have come out and publicly panned impeachment as a political stunt, pointing out there is no evidence of wrongdoing by President Biden as Republicans litigate the same debunked conspiracy theories they’ve investigated for over four years," said Ammar Moussa, spokesperson for Biden-Harris 2024.
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