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What a Disaster: James Comer “Swings and Misses” At Yesterday’s Press Conference

May 11, 2023

At James Comer’s long-promised and over-hyped press conference yesterday on his investigation into President Biden and his family, he showed that he and his MAGA colleagues over-promised and under-delivered. They once again failed to prove any connections of wrongdoing to President Biden. The only thing Comer did prove: this investigation is nothing more than a political stunt designed to hype up their disgraced former president, Donald Trump, and hurt President Biden and the Democrats. As usual, Comer is all hat, no cattle and failed to deliver the goods he’s promised for months. But don’t just take our word for it:

POLITICO: Comer Fails To Link President In Biden Family Probe. “[T]he highly anticipated press conference also raises fresh questions about their ability to ultimately capture their white whale: the president himself. And Comer’s already faced plenty of doubt, including from some within his own party, that he can back up his promises to show Biden’s connection to his family’s business dealings. No link has publicly emerged, and that didn’t change at Wednesday’s press conference. Asked if he would ultimately be able to prove his central thesis, Comer sidestepped […] But even as Republicans continue to rhetorically circle around Biden, much of the investigative effort they revealed on Wednesday centered around a network of businesses related to his family members and their associates. […] [Oversight Republicans’ memo] also doesn’t show any way Biden’s decisions were influenced by those agreements or that he had direct knowledge of them. And while Republicans have criticized the payments as questionable, they stopped short of calling any of the activity potentially illegal.” [Politico, 5/10/23]

New York Times: House Republican Report Finds No Evidence of Wrongdoing by President Biden. “But on Wednesday, the Republicans conceded that they had yet to find evidence of a specific corrupt action Mr. Biden took in office in connection with any of the business deals his son entered into. Instead, their presentation underscored how little headway top G.O.P. lawmakers have made in finding clear evidence of questionable transactions they can tie to Mr. Biden, their chief political rival. It has not stopped them from accusing the president of serious misconduct.” [New York Times, 5/10/23]

Raw Story: ‘You don’t actually have any facts’: Fox News host stomps on James Comer’s Biden investigation. “‘I know the Republicans said that the smoking gun were these financial records that you were able to subpoena and got your hands on,’ Doocy told Comer on Thursday. ‘And your party, the Republican investigators, say that that’s proof of influence peddling by Hunter and James [Biden].’ ‘But that’s just your suggestion,’ the Fox News host added. ‘You don’t actually have any facts to that point. You’ve got some circumstantial evidence’. Doocy added: ‘And the other thing is, of all those names, the one person who didn’t profit is that — there’s no evidence that Joe Biden did anything illegally.’” [Raw Story, 5/11/23]

Time Magazine: Comer Investigation of Biden Relatives Swings and Misses on Allegations of Influence Peddling. “Comer and his GOP colleagues on the House Oversight Committee further alleged that the payments, which included some from a Romanian national and a Chinese entity, constitute a ‘pattern of influence peddling.’ They provided no evidence of President Biden’s knowledge of the transactions and made no attempt to link the payments to any of his official or unofficial acts as a public servant… The declared purpose of the Comer investigation is to probe ‘the President’s role in his family members’ and business associates foreign and domestic business practices.’ To date, Comer has uncovered none.” [Time Magazine, 5/10/23]

The New Republic: Republicans Finally Admit They Have No Incriminating Evidence on Joe Biden. “Republicans’ big investigation into the Biden family has revealed…not a lot. The House GOP accused Joe Biden and his family on Wednesday of engaging in business with foreign entities—but were unable to provide any actual evidence linking the president to any wrongdoing. House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer released a 65-page memo detailing a sprawling investigation into Biden and some of his relatives, particularly his son Hunter Biden. Nowhere in the massive document was there a specific allegation of a crime committed by Biden or any of his relatives. During a press conference explaining the investigation, Comer was asked if he had evidence directly linking Biden to corruption. The Kentucky Republican hemmed and hawed but ultimately admitted he didn’t.” [The New Republic, 5/10/23]

CNN: House Republicans allege Biden family members received millions in payments from foreign entities in new bank records report. “The memo marks Comer’s most direct attempt to substantiate his allegations that Biden family members have enriched themselves off the family name. Comer has suggested that Biden may have been improperly influenced by the financial dealings, particularly by his family’s foreign business partners. But the latest report does not show any payments made directly to Joe Biden, either as vice president or after leaving office… On Wednesday, Comer was asked about specific policy decisions Biden made while president or vice president that may have been directly influenced by these foreign payments. Comer failed to name any and instead pointed to then-vice president Biden traveling around the world and discussing foreign aid in the last year of the Obama administration, and added they think there are decisions Biden made as president that “put China first and America last.” Comer said the committee ‘will get into more of those later.’” [CNN, 5/10/23]

NBC News: House Republicans escalate attacks on Biden family, alleging business with foreign nationals. “‘It’s been five years of investigations into Hunter Biden and his legitimate business activities and still Republicans have nothing to show for it,’ Lowell said. ‘Senate Republicans spent two years chasing conspiracies by those responsible for ‘Pizzagate’ and ‘the Big Lie’ and found no evidence of any wrongdoing. Now comes Rep. Comer who has spent the last five months making wild predictions without proof, asking inane questions out loud and falling short every time — including today.’… ‘Instead of redoing old investigations that found no evidence of wronging by Mr. Biden, Rep. Comer should do the same examination of the many entities of former President Trump and his family members,’ Lowell said.” [NBC News. 5/10/23]

Independent: Republicans offer no evidence of crimes at press conference on alleged ‘Biden family corruption’. “Republicans attempted to tell the press that the allegations were serious and that reporters should probe into potential illegal activity. In the days leading up to the presentation, Mr Comer and his allies had intimated that they would be presenting bombshell evidence that would show clear instances of wrongdoing. They’d expected a significant turnout and asked reporters attending to RSVP to the press conference. Upon arrival, The Independent was handed a summary of the allegations of impropriety, but when Mr Comer began to speak shortly after 9am, it was clear that seats in the House television studio were not nearly as packed as the chairman and Republican members had likely hoped.” [Independent, 5/10/23]

The Hill: House GOP digs in on Biden family dealings without directly connecting president. “But the 36-page report released by the panel’s Republicans on Wednesday that was based on bank records did not show any foreign money flowing directly to Joe Biden… ‘Comer keeps insisting he will provide evidence – but it hasn’t stopped him from a cascading barrage of innuendo and insinuations in the meantime,’ Sams said in the memo. Abbe Lowell, counsel for Hunter Biden, also dismissed the findings in a statement, saying that Comer ‘has spent the last five months making wild predictions without proof, asking inane questions out loud and falling short every time – including today.’ ‘Today’s so-called ‘revelations’ are retread, repackaged misstatements of perfectly proper meetings and business by private citizens,’ Lowell said, calling on Comer to investigate former President Trump’s family business dealings.” [The Hill, 5/10/23]