Republican House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer is probing an instance of apparent “collusion” between then-Vice President Joe Biden and Ukrainian energy firm Burisma, which employed Hunter Biden, to “spin media stories about Burisma’s corruption while Vice President Biden was publicly pushing an anti-corruption agenda in Ukraine.”
In a letter to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) on Wednesday, Comer demanded the agency disclose documents related to the family’s influence-peddling schemes to Congress. NARA has publicly released a file titled “Records on Hunter Biden, James Biden, and Their Foreign Business Dealings,” but has redacted or “withheld” sections of the records, Comer noted. The Oversight Committee is seeking the complete, unredacted file, and Comer highlighted in his letter one of the specific portions that warrant further investigation.
“For example, on December 4, 2015, at 10:45 a.m. — in an email with the subject of ‘Quotes’ — Eric Schwerin (a longtime Biden family business associate) wrote to Kate Bedingfield in the Office of the Vice President providing quotes the White House should use in response to media outreach regarding Hunter Biden’s role in Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company,” Comer wrote. “Later that day — at 2:30 p.m. — Ms. Bedingfield responded to Mr. Schwerin saying ‘VP signed off on this[.]’ The timing of this email traffic is concerning to the Committee.”
During that time, Hunter Biden served on the board of Burisma raking in upwards of $83,000 a month despite having no prior experience in the industry. The payout was far beyond comparable board compensation.
Comer also cited former family business partner Devon Archer’s July testimony to the Oversight Committee suggesting President Biden himself was closely involved in Hunter Biden’s Burisma schemes.
“According to Devon Archer (another longtime Biden family business associate), after a Burisma board of directors meeting in Dubai — on the evening of December 4, 2015 (midday in Washington, D.C.) — Hunter Biden ‘called D.C.’ to discuss pressure that Burisma asked him to relieve,” Comer wrote.
Contrary to President Biden’s repeated denials of being involved, the president allegedly interacted with his son’s corporate clients more than 200 times.
“Joe Biden never built an ‘absolute wall’ between his family’s business dealings and his official government work — his office doors were wide open to Hunter Biden’s associates,” Comer said in a statement.
“Suspiciously, Hunter Biden’s associate had a media statement on Burisma approved by Vice President Biden himself the same day Hunter Biden ‘called D.C.’ for help with the government pressure facing Burisma,” he added.
Comer’s demand follows his request last week for flight logs showing when Hunter Biden and associates such as Schwerin, Archer, or Jeffrey Cooper used the vice presidential aircraft. And last month, Comer sought records “in which then-Vice President Joe Biden used a pseudonym” or on which “Hunter Biden, Eric Schwerin, or Devon Archer is copied.”
In July, Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy signaled he would push for an impeachment inquiry if the information Republicans are seeking in their probe of the Biden family business is withheld.
“What I’ve said is, if they withhold information, the impeachment inquiry allows Congress to have the apex of power to get all the information they need. All this information people are finding out now is only because Republicans have investigated,” McCarthy said.
Since then, he’s reportedly been discussing plans for impeachment behind closed doors.