The US House of Representatives has, on Wednesday, endorsed the initiation of an impeachment inquiry against President Joe Biden, a move that Republicans are leveraging in their ongoing battle with Democrats ahead of the 2024 election.
President Biden denounced the action as a “baseless” stunt, emphasizing the absence of evidence linking him to corruption, particularly regarding his son Hunter’s contentious international dealings.
The Democratic-led Senate is unlikely to convict him even if the inquiry progresses to a formal impeachment trial.
In a vote tallying 221 to 212 strictly along party lines, every Republican supported the inquiry while every Democrat opposed it.
The focal point for conservatives remains Hunter Biden’s involvement in alleged influence-peddling, particularly his business engagements in Ukraine and China, which they claim involved leveraging the family name for personal gain.
Crucially, the allegations against Hunter Biden pertain to events that transpired before his father assumed the presidency.
The White House has continually stressed that there is no evidence of any wrongdoing.
President Biden swiftly responded to the vote, accusing Republicans of delaying crucial matters, such as government funding, while being preoccupied with scoring political advantages in the lead-up to the election.
This move ensures Republicans a significant platform to critique Biden’s presidency during his reelection campaign, potentially diverting attention from the federal criminal trials faced by his expected challenger, Donald Trump.
“Instead of doing anything to help make Americans’ lives better, they are focused on attacking me with lies,” Biden said in a statement.
“Instead of doing their job on the urgent work that needs to be done, they are choosing to waste time on this baseless political stunt that even Republicans in Congress admit is not supported by facts.”
House Speaker Mike Johnson and other members of Republican leadership, also said, “As President Biden continues to stonewall lawful Congressional subpoenas, today’s vote of the full House of Representatives authorizing the inquiry puts us in the strongest position to enforce these subpoenas in court.
“The American people deserve answers,” they said in a joint statement. “This impeachment inquiry will help us find them.”