Hunter Biden’s Lawyer Runs Circles Around House GOP

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Abbe Lowell, a lawyer for Hunter Biden, who is a son of the current president, is roundly rejecting demands from the Republican leadership on the House Oversight Committee for communications and financial records. That’s as the panel’s GOP majority pursues what The Washington Post credited as at least in part an investigation into business dealings between members of the Biden family and Chinese interests.

Hunter Biden does not have any role in his father’s presidential administration, and there is no indication he will soon — or at any point — be taking on such a role, unlike the multiple members of the Trump family who had jobs in his administration and the still others in his family who worked on his campaign. It’s also unclear there is any meaningful connection — at all — between the president and the business dealings House Republicans are scrutinizing, although claiming some kind of involvement by the president has obviously been among the themes of Republicans’ angry rhetoric. (“The Post did not find evidence that Joe Biden personally benefited from or knew details about the transactions with CEFC,” The Washington Post reported.) Those who were involved included Hunter and James Biden, his uncle.

And yet, Republicans have continued. Lowell challenged the idea that the Republican investigative efforts had a legitimate legislative purpose, as the idea goes. “As your Letter is a sweeping attempt to collect an expansive array of documents and communications from President Biden and his family, I write to explain that the Committee on Oversight and Accountability lacks a legitimate legislative purpose and oversight basis for requesting such records from Mr. Biden, who is a private citizen,” Lowell told committee leader Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.). The oversight and investigative powers of Congress are not just open-ended and able to be legally applied to whoever Republicans might deem useful for political purposes.

Lowell also noted the discrepancy between the supposedly serious concerns about the Bidens and the lack of widespread Republican outrage about Trump, who besides his past business connections to foreign entities has recently received large payouts — of millions of dollars — apparently originating with a Saudi fund controlled by that country’s infamous Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in connection to Trump properties hosting events for LIV Golf. That Saudi leader is the same figure widely credited for the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and now, Trump’s companies have taken in millions. “It is more than ironic, perhaps hypocritical, for Republican members who now hold the gavel to declare such a legitimate purpose, when, while in the minority, they were vocal opponents of House Democrats seeking similar information from President Trump and his family, some of whom held official government positions,” Lowell said.

The stand-off could eventually make it to court. Republicans newly in control of the House have repeatedly faced setbacks in their already aggressive pushes at some kind of politically motivated excuse for so-called oversight, whether that’s in push-back from the Justice Department at the prospect of providing private information about certain ongoing investigations, push-back from the Treasury Department at the idea of giving Comer financial records tied to the Bidens, or hearings like those of the oversight panel and a new panel Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) is leading providing an opportunity for rebuffing Republicans and exposing their agenda’s flaws.