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ROUNDUP: MAGA Political Motivations Behind Biden Family Investigations Exposed Once Again

May 23, 2023

Earlier this week, James Comer let it slip that his investigations are really about benefiting Trump politically in the lead up to the 2024 presidential election. This latest revelation comes as no surprise—months before they managed to seize control of the House of Representatives, Comer and his MAGA allies like Jim Jordan and Kevin McCarthy were publicly scheming about their motivations for investigating president Biden and his family: influencing future elections. From the beginning, House Republicans have always used congressional investigations for political gain. Instead of working on the issues like inflation, lower costs for families, or our economic strength, top MAGA House Republicans are only working to investigate, impeach, and impede the Biden administration.

MSNBC: GOP’s Comer Says A Bit Too Much About The Point Of Anti-Biden Probe. “The Kentucky Republican’s hapless crusade against President Joe Biden and his family has, at least so far, failed quite spectacularly, but Comer appeared on Fox News yesterday morning — shortly after 4 a.m. ET — to suggest that his investigations are making a real difference. Echoing McCarthy’s infamous 2015 quote, the Oversight Committee chair encouraged Fox viewers to simply look at the Democratic president’s poll numbers […[ But what matters most in this story is the degree to which the Kentucky Republican repeated McCarthy’s 2015 mistake: Democrats have spent months insisting that Comer’s crusade is little more than a politically motivated stunt. It was against this backdrop that the Oversight Committee chairman justified his embarrassing probes by pointing to 2024 polling data. Several years ago, Michael Kinsley famously wrote, ‘A gaffe is when a politician tells the truth — some obvious truth he isn’t supposed to say.’ With this in mind, it seems rather obvious that Comer blurted out an unmistakable gaffe.” [MSNBC, 5/23/23]

HuffPost: GOP Rep. James Comer Implies Biden Family Probe Is Really About Helping Trump In 2024. “Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.) on Monday inadvertently implied that House Republicans’ high-profile investigation into President Joe Biden’s family members and their finances is actually about helping Donald Trump win the presidency in 2024. […] During Monday’s interview, Comer claimed that Biden’s family members have received money from foreign nationals, saying ‘that’s what we’ve proven’ with the GOP’s probe. But in reality, despite House Republicans’ efforts to portray Biden as hopelessly corrupt, the committee didn’t present any evidence in its hearings that directly implicated Biden. Comer also misrepresented the state of presidential polling in his interview. His claim that Trump has a 7-point edge over Biden stems from an ABC News/Washington Post survey released earlier this month. Other surveys, however, show Biden leading, and the overall polling picture indicates a tight race between Biden and Trump. In particular, polling shows little indication that House GOP investigations of Biden’s family are driving the president’s political standing downward. While Biden’s approval rating remains underwater, scattered surveys of the public show little indication that the Comer-led investigations have had a major effect one way or another.” [HuffPost, 5/22/23]

Washington Post (Opinion): Facts Matter: Another Disastrous Spate Of Failed GOP Investigations. “The Comer crash and burn: Since the GOP won the House majority, it has labored to find some evidence of President Biden’s corruption or criminality, a futile effort to create a moral equivalence between Biden and the most corrupt, scandal-plagued and disgraced president in history (now facing multiple criminal indictments). The problem: a total lack of facts. […] Comer’s news conference the previous week turned out to be a nothingburger ‘largely consisting of Comer throwing around vague, unsubstantiated accusations and failing to link the president to any of his relatives’ alleged ‘influence peddling’.’ Even one of the most egregious conspiracy mongers, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), confessed, ‘You’re not going to get necessarily hard proof but there’s such a huge body of evidence,’ he said without identifying what that was. We just have to ‘infer’ wrongdoing, said Johnson. The only thing we can say for certain is that Republicans’ effort to dig up dirt on Biden has been as unsuccessful as Trump’s alleged effort to extort Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to manufacture dirt on Biden. In other words, rather than turn up evidence of Biden’s wrongdoing, Republicans have confirmed their lack of a real agenda and an infatuation with right-wing media concoctions. The hypocrisy should not be missed: The real scandals — from Rep. George Santos of New York (whose 13 criminal indictments this month weren’t enough for House Republicans to bring an expulsion vote) to Trump’s serial wrongdoing (he confessed in the CNN town hall to willful retention of government documents) — are on the Republican side.” [Washington Post (Opinion), 5/19/23]

Washington Post: House GOP Chairman Links His Investigation To Biden’s Poll Numbers. “Eight years ago, Rep. Kevin McCarthy drew extensive condemnation from his fellow Republicans for a move that might have cost him his bid to succeed John A. Boehner as House speaker. McCarthy drew a line between the Benghazi investigation and Hillary Clinton’s declining poll numbers. Among those rebuking him: the chairman leading the investigation. On Monday, the Republican congressman leading an investigation into the Biden family’s finances made somewhat similar comments, connecting his probe to President Biden’s poll numbers. Appearing early Monday morning on Fox News, House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) suggested that the mainstream media couldn’t ignore the investigation because of the impact it was having on Biden’s 2024 standing. ‘So do you think that because of your investigation, that is what’s moved this needle with the media?’ the host asked Comer. ‘Absolutely. There’s no question,’ Comer said. ‘You look at the polling, and right now Donald Trump is seven points ahead of Joe Biden and trending upward; Joe Biden’s trending downward. And I believe that the media is looking around, scratching their head, and they’re realizing the American people are keeping up with our investigation.’” [Washington Post, 5/22/23]

Time: House Oversight Chair Links Biden Investigation to Trump Polling, Drawing Outrage From Top Democrat. “But Rep. James Comer, the Kentucky Republican who chairs the House Oversight Committee, said on Monday that his committee’s public airing of overseas business transactions by Hunter Biden and other Biden relatives was helping Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. During an interview on Fox News, Comer linked the Republicans’ investigation into Joe Biden’s relatives to Donald Trump’s poll numbers… Comer appeared to be referring to a recent ABC-Washington Post poll from early May that showed Trump beating Biden in a head-to-head matchup. Some polling experts have criticized the survey, saying the sample size was too small and the methods imperfect. Most polls show a potential race between Trump and Biden in 2024 being too close to call. ‘It’s amazing to me that the Chairman of the Oversight Committee openly measures the progress of his work by Donald Trump’s poll numbers,’ said the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, Rep. Jamie Raskin of Maryland, who added that Comer’s ‘comment tells the world that these wild-goose-chase probes are all about one thing: helping Donald Trump claw his way back into the White House.’” [Time, 5/22/23]

Salon: “Look At The Polling”: James Comer Brags That GOP’s Biden Crusade Is Boosting Trump’s Numbers. “House Oversight Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., bragged that the House Republicans’ investigation into President Joe Biden and his family is boosting former President Donald Trump in the polls. […] Even some Fox News hosts have questioned the lack of evidence that has come out of the probe despite Republicans’ touting allegations of corruption against the president’s family. ‘You don’t actually have any facts to that point,’ host Steve Doocy said to Comer during a ‘Fox and Friends’ interview earlier this month. ‘You’ve got some circumstantial evidence,’ Doocy continued. ‘And the other thing is, of all those names, the one person who didn’t profit is — there’s no evidence that Joe Biden did anything illegally,’ he added. ‘You know it’s bad when you’ve lost Fox,’ tweeted Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., after the interview. Comer drew mockery last week after claiming that the so-called ‘informant’ that provided evidence to the committee was missing. ‘Well, unfortunately, we can’t track down the informant,’ Comer said. ‘We’re hopeful that the informant is still there. The whistleblower knows the informant. The whistleblower is very credible.’” [Salon, 5/22/23]