House Republican now invites Biden to personally testify in bungled impeachment probe

Oversight Committee Chair James Comer has invited President Joe Biden to testify publicly in the flailing House Republican impeachment probe.

This comes after the president’s son, Hunter Biden, testified behind closed doors, but didn’t give Republicans what they wanted – they have yet to find evidence that the president benefitted financially from his family’s foreign business dealings during his time as vice president.

Mr Comer invited Mr Biden to appear on 16 April, an invitation he’s highly unlikely to accept.

“I invite you to participate in a public hearing at which you will be afforded the opportunity to explain, under oath, your involvement with your family’s sources of income and the means it has used to generate it,” Mr Comer wrote in a letter over seven pages. “As you are aware, presidents before you have provided testimony to congressional committees, including President Ford’s testimony before the Subcommittee on Criminal Justice of the House Judiciary Committee in 1974.”

According to the Senate Historical Office, presidents have given evidence three times in total.

On 20 March, when Mr Comer indicated that he would invite Mr Biden, White House spokesperson Ian Sams said: “Comer knows 20+ witnesses have testified that POTUS did nothing wrong. He knows that the hundreds of thousands of pages of records he’s received have refuted his false allegations. This is a sad stunt at the end of a dead impeachment. Call it a day, pal.”

On Thursday, the Oversight Committee Democrats wrote on X: “The GOP couldn’t find an impeachable offense, the evidence has been comically distorted and twisted, and now even right-wing media is calling out all the acrobatic contortions and comic evasions. The GOP impeachment inquiry has been a circus. Time to fold up the tent.”

The impeachment probe faced yet another setback when the special counsel, appointed by former President Donald Trump, who’s investigating Hunter Biden, charged a former FBI informant for supposedly lying about the president and Hunter Biden taking $5m in bribes each from a Ukrainian energy company.

Last month, Hunter Biden testified that his father was never a part of his business dealings. He declined to testify publicly this month.

In a letter to Mr Comer, Hunter Biden’s attorney Abbe Lowell wrote: “Your blatant planned-for-media event is not a proper proceeding but an obvious attempt to throw a Hail Mary pass after the game has ended.”