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Republicans, Democrats argue over Biden impeachment inquiry

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Republicans, Democrats, two convicted felons and a U.S. Navy veteran continued the long-simmering debate over alleged influence peddling by the Biden family at a joint Congressional hearing Wednesday.

Talking over each other at times, each side alleged the other was lying. Democrats and one convicted felon said there was no evidence President Joe Biden did anything wrong. Republicans, another convicted felon and a U.S. veteran said that Biden was involved in the questionable overseas business dealings of his family members, including son Hunter Biden and brother James Biden.

Hunter Biden did not appear at Wednesday’s hearing despite previously asking to testify in public. A chair and microphone prepared for Hunter Biden was empty during the hearing. Hunter Biden had previously said he would not attend.

The hearing comes as House Republicans make their case to impeach President Joe Biden. In addition to impeachment, Comer has said he is considering potential criminal referrals to the Justice Department for prosecution of alleged Biden family wrongdoing.

Comer said Wednesday that the Oversight Committee has found “found no credible evidence of the Bidens providing any work product” despite $24 million in payments and has “identified no legitimate value or document or even one single hour of work that the Bidens have provided their business partners.”

“What is apparent, after over a year of investigation, is that the Bidens do not work in any traditional sense of the word. They do not work as consultants. Or lawyers. Or advisors. The Bidens don’t sell a product or a service or a set of skills,” Comer said in his opening statement. “The Bidens sell Joe Biden.”

Ranking member Jamie Raskin, D-Md., called it a farce.

“With any luck, today marks the end of perhaps the most spectacular failure in the history of congressional investigations: The effort to find a high crime or misdemeanor committed by Joe Biden and then to impeach him for it,” Raskin said. “Today the good chairman and his ace MAGA detectives have finally jumped the shark. The comedy of errors come crashing to an end as House Republicans in more than a dozen Biden districts beg for mercy and the committee throws a flabby Hail Mary pass three weeks after the Super Bowl is over.”

Tony Bobulinski, a U.S. Navy veteran, was one of several people called to appear publicly for the joint hearing of the House Oversight and Judiciary committees Wednesday.

“You’re presented here today with two narratives in this investigation, a false one being pushed by Joe Biden, a serial liar and fabulist now under this impeachment investigation for public corruption, his brother Jim Biden, a 75-year-old man who can’t keep his lies straight, including under oath, and his son Hunter Biden, a chronic drug addict facing two indictments with 12 counts,” Bobulinski said during his opening statement. “You also have before you the truth, confirmed by multiple Biden family business partners over many years, and backed up by mountains of irrefutable evidence including text messages, emails, documents, recordings.”

Democrats invited Lev Parnas, a former associate of former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, to testify publicly as well.

“Today I ask you to consider the following in nearly a year traveling the world and interviewing officials in different countries, I found precisely zero evidence of the Bidens corruption in Ukraine,” Parnas said. “No credible sources ever provided proof of criminal activity, not the FBI, CIA or the NSA. No respectable Ukrainian official has ever said that the Bidens did anything illegal.”

Parnas was convicted of fraud and campaign finance crimes in 2021. He was sentenced to 20 months in prison and ordered to pay $2.3 million in restitution for the charges.

Jason Galanis, who is serving a 14-year prison sentence, testified virtually from Federal Prison Camp, a minimum-security prison for male inmates in Montgomery, Alabama. He testified that he got into business with Hunter Biden to make money trading on Biden’s influence.

“Our objective was to build a diversified private equity platform which would be anchored by globally known Wall Street brand together with a globally known political name: Biden,” Galanis said. “Our goal – that is Hunter Biden, Devon Archer and me – was to make billions, not millions. The entire value out of Hunter Biden to our business was his family name as access to his father, Vice President Joe Biden.”

Galanis also said he the U.S. Department of Justice and Bureau of Prisons retaliated against him for speaking out. He also said, in tears, that he was sexually assaulted by a member of prison staff at Federal Prison Camp Pensacola before being transferred to another prison.

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