Senate Republicans didn’t only embolden President Donald Trump with their acquittal delivered at the end of his Senate impeachment trial. They’re also carrying on with the scheme that got him engulfed in impeachment proceedings in the first place. Senate Committee chairs including the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs panel’s Ron Johnson (R-Wi.) have been investigating the Bidens, as Trump tried to bribe Ukraine into doing, and now, Johnson is preparing to issue the investigation’s first subpoena. It’s a significant escalation in the de facto disinformation campaigns against the Bidens, who have yet to be actually credibly accused of any wrongdoing whatsoever, no matter the melodrama of GOP investigative efforts.
In other words, it’s looking like Hillary Clinton all over again. On Sunday, Johnson notified the members of his committee that it was his “intention to schedule a business meeting to consider a committee subpoena” of former Blue Star Strategies consultant Andrii Telizhenko, whose company represented the Ukrainian energy firm Burisma in the United States, according to Johnson. Allegedly, Burisma — which former VP Joe Biden’s son Hunter briefly worked for — wanted to use their Biden connection as lobbying leverage for favorable policy from the State Department.
Even that allegation still fails to actually implicate the Bidens themselves in anything.
Johnson’s letter reads:
‘As part of the committee’s ongoing investigation, it has received U.S. government records indicating that Blue Star sought to leverage Hunter Biden’s role as a board member of Burisma to gain access to, and potentially influence matters at, the State Department… Because Mr. Telizhenko’s records and information would be responsive to the committee’s requests, and Blue Star has refused to provide them, a subpoena to Mr. Telizhenko for these records is appropriate at this time.’
Senate investigators looking at the Bidens have apparently gotten records from both the Treasury and State Departments.
Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), who’s the ranking member on Johnson’s committee, is among those to have already expressed opposition to the Republican-led investigations. He and other Democrats have very credibly accused Republicans of playing right into the hands of Russian disinformation peddlers, who’ve falsely alleged that Ukraine — rather than Russia — led some kind of election meddling campaign in 2016. President Trump himself has pushed this conspiracy theory.
In his weekend letter, Johnson addressed critics, writing:
‘Blocking the receipt of relevant records, as any committee member voting against this subpoena would be doing, only heightens the risk of ‘disinformation’ because Congress would not have access to all pertinent information.’
To call that a false characterization of the situation would be an understatement. The more information that Republicans get their hands on, the easier it will be for them to run disinformation efforts against Biden like they targeted Hillary Clinton ahead of the 2016 election.
Biden is one of only two candidates with currently substantive shots at the Democratic presidential nomination for the 2020 cycle; the other is Bernie Sanders. Trump has already wound himself up with efforts to drag Biden’s name through the muck, indicating just how torrential the 2020 presidential race already is.