GOP asks Hunter Biden to appear for March 20 public hearing

Republicans on the House Oversight and Accountability Committee have invited Hunter Biden and several of his former business associates to testify publicly before Congress, setting a March 20 hearing following last week’s closed-door deposition of the president’s son.

The invitation comes after Hunter Biden spent more than six hours answering questions from GOP investigators who have been leading the charge to impeach his father — an event that failed to deliver a smoking gun for the investigation.

The hearing, titled “Influence Peddling: Examining Joe Biden’s Abuse of Public Office,” also aims to include Biden’s former business partner Devon Archer, as well as two other former business associates.

Hunter Biden in his deposition strongly pushed back against GOP investigators, arguing their impeachment investigation was a farce that would be unable to connect his father with his business dealings, let alone any wrongdoing that would constitute an impeachable offense.

“I am here today to provide the committees with the one uncontestable fact that should end the false premise of this inquiry: I did not involve my father in my business. Not while I was a practicing lawyer, not in my investments or transactions domestic or international, not as a board member, and not as an artist. Never,” Hunter Biden said in an opening statement.

“My testimony today should put an end to this baseless and destructive political charade.”

At another point, Hunter Biden sought to highlight that his father was unaware of any of his dealings with Chinese business leaders.

“I will probably say this 1,000 times, my father had absolutely no knowledge of, no involvement in, had no — any way was — awareness of my business relationship with Jonathan Li,” he said.

Hunter Biden’s attorney did not immediately respond to request for comment.

His testimony would come at a difficult time for GOP investigators.

The source of the allegations suggesting that President Biden accepted a bribe in an effort to help his son was arrested on charges related to making false statements to the FBI on the matter. The indictment alleged Alexander Smirnov simply made up the story given his opposition to President Biden’s candidacy.

The indictment struck at the heart of the GOP approach for a potential impeachment of President Biden, as bribery is one of the few listed impeachable crimes.

Still, GOP investigators are exploring what they have deemed “influence peddling” by the Biden family even as Hunter Biden and Archer have pushed back on any assertion President Biden had any insight into their activities.

To counter that narrative, the GOP has also invited Tony Boblinski, a spurned associate of Hunter Biden who was only briefly involved in their business dealings and later became involved with former President Trump’s campaign.

Hunter Biden has called for an investigation into Bobulinski, who he has accused of lying about their relationship.

The GOP has also invited Jason Galanis, a former associate of Archer’s who is serving time in federal prison on charges related to defrauding a Native American tribe.

Hunter Biden said last month he had minimal connection to Galanis.

“I think that 10 years ago, for 30 minutes, I was introduced to Jason Galanis, and that’s only ― the only time I ever recall meeting him,” he said during his deposition.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), the top Democrat on the Oversight panel, criticized Republicans for inviting Bobulinski and Galanis.

“It seems Chairman [James] Comer (R-Ky.) has decided his best witnesses now include a federally incarceratedserial fraudster’ and a bitterly frustrated would-be business partner who collaborated with the Trump campaign. Unfortunately for Chairman Comer, even these dubious witnesses have already testified that they have no evidence that Joe Biden took any official actions to benefit Hunter Biden’s business ventures,” he said in a statement.

“In their last hearing, I urged them to fold up the circus tent, but they just came back with a three-ring circus instead.”

The public hearing comes after Hunter Biden had previously said he would only testify publicly, pointing to concerns that his comments would be taken out of context by Republican leaders.

Though he initially flouted a subpoena from investigators, he agreed to a deposition as House panels were preparing to hold him in contempt of Congress.

Updated at 6:13 p.m.

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