Several Senate Republicans are uniting in support of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s move to initiate an impeachment inquiry against President Biden despite a growing number of skeptical GOP leaders in the upper chamber.
The inquiry will determine whether there are grounds to bring formal charges (articles of impeachment) against Biden over allegations of “abuse of power, obstruction, and corruption,” McCarthy said Tuesday.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said Wednesday on his “Verdict with Ted Cruz” podcast that he’s been “calling for the House to open impeachment inquiries for months.”
“I think the evidence long ago cleared that threshold, but they finally done it,” he said.
“Joe Biden’s confession on tape is direct evidence that he committed one of the critical elements of bribery,” Cruz later said. “Now, we don’t yet have direct evidence of every element of the crime, but we have direct evidence of one of the most critical aspects of the crime, which is the quote that Joe Biden has admitted and that is unequivocally direct evidence, and it’s pretty damn compelling.”
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Meanwhile, Sen. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla., told Fox News Digital on Wednesday that he didn’t think “we would be down this road” if the Biden administration was “being open and transparent with everybody to begin with.”
“There was a lot of information that was requested by the committee that has jurisdiction, from the Ways and Means [Committee] to Judiciary to Oversight,” he said. “And the fact is, is they were slow-balling or just refusing to share the information.”
If enough evidence is compiled and articles of impeachment are sent over to the upper chamber, Mullin said, “Then it’s our job to put him on trial and, if so, convict him.”
Speaking to reporters Tuesday, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., said the House has “done an excellent job trying to uncover the tangled web of corruption that we’ve seen coming out of the Biden administration and specifically the Biden family.”
“Clearly, there are facts that need further investigation,” he said. “The House is headed in the right direction.”
Also on Tuesday, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told reporters that he would probably be a “yes” vote on impeaching the president, The Messenger reported.
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“If I had any legitimate questions, and I think there are questions about the narrative, yeah, I would,” he said.
“I’ve been involved in every impeachment in this country but one,” Graham said.
Although Graham supports an inquiry, he said that “we need to have structure here” in response to McCarthy evading a floor vote before launching the inquiry. McCarthy said former Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi created that precedent when she sidestepped a vote to impeach former President Donald Trump for the second time in 2021.
Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., also said in a statement Tuesday that “serious allegations” have been elevated about Biden’s “involvement with his son’s overseas business dealings that can’t be ignored.”
“We need to get to the full truth, and an impeachment inquiry is the right way to do that,” he said.
Conversely, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has not indicated his support of the inquiry. He told reporters Tuesday when asked about the House’s effort: “I don’t think Speaker McCarthy needs any advice from the Senate on how to run the House.”
White House spokesperson for oversight and investigations Ian Sams slammed the effort as “extreme politics.”
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“House Republicans have been investigating the President for 9 months, and they’ve turned up no evidence of wrongdoing. His own GOP members have said so. He vowed to hold a vote to open impeachment, now he flip flopped (sic) because he doesn’t have support. Extreme politics at its worst,” Sams wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
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The House is probing Biden’s foreign business ties with his son, Hunter, in Ukraine and China. Republicans hope to unearth bribery negotiations that suggest Biden leveraged his position as then-vice president under former President Barack Obama for personal gain.
House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., will lead the inquiry alongside House Oversight Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith, R-Mo.
Should the House vote to impeach Biden, the Senate would serve as a tribunal where senators would review evidence, listen to witnesses and cast votes for the acquittal or conviction of the impeached official.
GOP legislators may face an uphill battle as the Democrat-controlled Senate is unlikely to convict Biden. Sen. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., on Wednesday called the decision to launch an impeachment inquiry “absurd.”