Top Republican on House Oversight eyes Hunter Biden, Fauci for 2023 probes
If Republicans take control of the House in the next Congress, the House Oversight Committee’s top priority will be investigating Hunter Biden, the president’s son. That’s according to Kentucky Congressman James Comer, the top Republican on the committee, who spoke with CBS News chief Washington correspondent Major Garrett for this week’s “The Takeout” podcast.
“I believe that his son is that corrupt,” Comer said.
He accused Hunter Biden of profiting off his last name and Joe Biden of protecting his son’s interest.
“Any father would probably do that,” he said. “But the problem is Hunter Biden is a national security threat.”
President Biden has said that he has had no involvement in his son’s business deals. Hunter Biden’s business ties are being scrutinized by the Justice Department.
Garrett asked whether the committee has enough evidence to link Hunter Biden and his father and whether it could amount to an impeachment proceeding against the president.
“I haven’t seen that yet,” Comer said.
Comer, who expects to become chairman of the committee in a Republican-controlled chamber, is concerned the Justice Department could file an indictment against Hunter Biden after the midterms, inadvertently helping the president’s son by stymying the investigation.
“That indictment then would make it hard for our subpoena to be effective with Hunter,” Comer said, adding that a potential appointment of a special counsel to Hunter’s case would make it “impossible” to get Hunter to testify in front of a congressional investigative committee.
Who else could receive a subpoena if and when Comer takes the chairman’s gavel? Infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci.
Dr. Fauci has maintained that COVID-19 likely resulted from a “natural occurrence,” as opposed to a lab leak in Wuhan, China, telling a Senate committee this week that the virus likely jumped from “an animal host, perhaps through an intermediary host, into a human species, which then spread throughout the human population.”
Comer does not believe that analysis and suggests the government isn’t doing enough to uncover the disease’s origins.
“We are not going to let up on that,” Comer told Garrett. “I think the American people deserve to know the truth about COVID 19. They deserve to have a government try to actually find the truth about where the COVID 19 originated from.”
On a previous episode of “The Takeout,” Dr. Fauci said he would welcomes congressional scrutiny of his work and has nothing to hide.
Comer also wants to investigate the handling of migrant activity at the U.S.-Mexico border. Even though Border Patrol agents along the southern border recorded 222,000 apprehensions in May — an all-time monthly high — he claims that the administration’s policies are inviting “even more people” to come.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, he said, would be a prime target for impeachment.
“He’s at the top of the list because he’s not doing his job on the border. It’s getting worse every day.”
Comer has represented his Kentucky district in Congress since 2017 and regularly flies home with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Comer said McConnell and President Trump have never been “fond” of one another and the relationship has only deteriorated since Trump lost his 2020 reelection.
“I think one of the things that Trump never liked about McConnell is the fact that at the end of the day, he tried to get to 60 (votes in the Senate). And if you get to 60, you’re going to have to get a few Democrats along the way.”
A “circular firing squad doesn’t seem to do much good for your side,” Comer lamented.
Highlights from this week’s episode:
- Whether there will be another mass shooting in America: “Well, I hope that there’s never another mass shooting, but I believe that you have evil people in America. And I know every time there’s a mass shooting, there are a lot of people. They expect Congress to do something. And at the end of the day, you cannot legislate against evil. So unfortunately, there are probably going to be more shootings in America. But I believe we need to do everything in our ability in Congress to try to make our schools harder, make them more fortified to where the shootings don’t happen in a school. We should not have a school where a shooter can physically walk in off the street.”
- Arming teachers in schools: “I am comfortable with teachers being armed. Now, my mother was a public school teacher. She would not have wanted to have been armed, but she would have been fine with other teachers that were skilled in in shooting, that would have voluntarily gone to take training classes. She would have been fine with that. She I think if you look at what Kentucky’s tried to do, we say giving the teachers the choice. If you want to be armed and you’re willing to take classes to train, then you can be armed in the school. But if you’re a teacher who is afraid of guns, don’t want any part of gun, then then you shouldn’t be forced to have guns. So that’s that’s what I support.”
- House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s leadership: “You know, he, it’s tough being the leader. It’s, unfortunately, it’s a partisan business that we’re in. If you’re the leader of your conference, whether you’re Pelosi or Kevin McCarthy or Mitch McConnell or Chuck Schumer, it’s a partisan business that you’re in. So, there are a lot of people that are, that despise bipartisan politics. And unfortunately, that’s that’s where we are.”
Executive producer: Arden Farhi
Producers: Jamie Benson, Jacob Rosen, Sara Cook and Eleanor Watson
CBSN Production: Eric Soussanin
Show email: [email protected]