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2 Nov, 2023 19:25

US House speaker promises Biden impeachment decision ‘soon’

The process should not be politicized, Mike Johnson told reporters
US House speaker promises Biden impeachment decision ‘soon’

US House Republicans are fast approaching a point where they will have to decide whether to impeach President Joe Biden, but following the evidence and observing due process takes time, Speaker Mike Johnson said on Thursday.

“I do believe that very soon we are coming to a point of decision on it,” Johnson, a Louisiana Republican, told reporters on Capitol Hill. “We’re gonna follow the evidence where it leads and we’ll see, and I’m not gonna predetermine it this morning.”

Johnson pointed out that Democrats had twice used impeachment for “raw partisan political purposes” against President Donald Trump.

“We have to follow due process and we have to follow the law,” he added.

Impeachment is the most serious power Congress has, next to a declaration of war, and it has to be done properly, Johnson said, and “not the way the Democrats did it – snap impeachments, sham impeachments, and all the rest.”

Trump was impeached by the House twice, once for allegedly conditioning US aid to Ukraine on investigating Biden, and the second time over the January 6, 2021 Capitol riot. Both times, the Senate voted not to convict.

Biden has long been accused of profiting from influence-peddling schemes by his brother James and son Hunter, dating back to his vice-presidency under Barack Obama. He has denied any wrongdoing and repeatedly denied any knowledge of his son's business dealings. Evidence that has recently emerged, however, suggests otherwise.

On Wednesday, the House Oversight Committee Republicans released a report showing that a $40,000 “loan repayment” check Joe Biden received from his brother in September 2017 originated from a larger payment the Chinese company CEFC wired to his son Hunter, who “extorted” it from them in a text message later discovered on his laptop.

Biden not only lied to the American people about Hunter’s business dealings and his role in them, he also placed “America’s interests behind his own desire for money,” said committee chair James Comer, a Kentucky Republican.

On Thursday morning, USA Today published an op-ed by Hunter Biden, in which he accused the Republicans of weaponizing his drug addiction for “a vile and sustained disinformation campaign” against his father, the president.