WASHINGTON (AP).- The untimely decision by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Republican Kevin McCarthy, to launch an investigation and then impeach President Joe Biden appears to have the support of even the most reluctant Republicans, and some lawmakers of the party are pushing for it to be done quickly instead of prolonging the process until 2024, which is an election year.
McCarthy began and closed a closed-door meeting of Republican lawmakers on Wednesday in which he justified his reasons for the investigation requested by former President Donald Trump, the favorite to win the party’s presidential nomination and face Biden next year.
The White House moved to combat allegations against the president regarding his son Hunter.
In a 14-page memo to media directors, the White House urged them to accurately report on “the unprecedented and unsubstantiated allegations with which Republicans justify an investigation in light of an impeachment trial.”
The speaker of the House is at a political turning point, as right-wing lawmakers allied with Trump fight daily to oust him from office.
Republicans are trying to link Biden to his son Hunter’s business transactions and distract from the legal dangers Trump faces as the two contest the White House for the second time. Trump has twice been impeached and acquitted, and now faces four simultaneous criminal trials, including for trying to overturn the 2020 election, in which he was defeated by Biden. Both situations are unprecedented for a president or former president.
Some Republican lawmakers think the sooner they turn against Biden, the better.
“I hope we get it done as soon as possible,” said Rep. James Comer, chairman of the Oversight Committee, which is leading the investigation.
On the other front, McCarthy’s decision to initiate the investigation does not appear to have appeased right-wing legislators, whose votes he must win for his most immediate task: convincing the Republican majority to approve the spending bills necessary to avoid a shutdown of the government within two weeks.
The intransigent Republican right wants McCarthy to cut federal spending below the levels agreed with Biden for the budget agreed upon months ago. And that position means a real risk of a government shutdown if they don’t fund the government by September 30, when the money runs out.
Democrats are expected to oppose those Republican efforts and Biden’s impeachment at the same time.
Rep. Adam Schiff, who led Trump’s first impeachment trial, said McCarthy’s failure to bring the investigation to a full House vote was “an acknowledgment that he lacks support in his own bloc to take this forward.” .
“It’s in the hands of the most extreme elements,” Schiff said when lawmakers returned to Washington on Tuesday. “It’s yet another indication of the weakness of the (House) presidency and the extent to which he is manipulated by Donald Trump.”