Updated Mar 13, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Hunter Biden rejects House GOP "carnival side show" invite

Hunter Biden and others walk through a door. Most are dressed in suits.

(L-R) Hunter Biden and attorney Abbe Lowell arrive for a closed-door deposition with the House Oversight and Judiciary committees on Capitol Hill on Feb. 28. Photo: Roberto Schmidt/Getty Images

Hunter Biden will not attend an upcoming hearing related to House Republicans' effort to impeach President Biden, his legal team said in a letter to House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer (R-Ky.) on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The president's son testified behind closed doors last month for six hours as part of the GOP-led probe, which was partially spurred by false information from an FBI informant who has since been indicted.

  • Hunter Biden received an invitation for a March 20 hearing in Washington D.C. last week, per a letter from his attorney Abbe Lowell. It's the day before they're scheduled for a hearing in California, per the letter.
  • "Mr. Biden declines your invitation to this carnival side show," Lowell said.

Catch up quick: Hunter Biden maintained during his deposition that he did not involve his father in any business dealings and blasted Republicans' efforts as a "baseless and destructive" political charade.

  • The testimony occurred after he refused a private one for months.

In the letter, Lowell said that House Republicans previously stated that depositions were the final step of the probe.

  • "Your latest step — this March 6 invitation — is not a serious oversight proceeding," the letter said. "It is your attempt to resuscitate your conference's moribund inquiry with a made-for-right media, circus act."

The other side: Comer said in a statement that his committee "called Hunter Biden's bluff."

  • "Hunter Biden for months stated he wanted a public hearing, but now that one has been offered alongside his business associates that he worked with for years, he is refusing to come," he said.

Zoom out: Biden's refusal to testify is another blow to an impeachment inquiry that has already been reeling from repeated witness denials that President Biden was directly involved in his son's business dealings.

  • House Republicans have increasingly acknowledged that the inquiry is unlikely to lead to a vote on the House floor, much less impeachment.
  • Instead, GOP lawmakers have turned to flashy hearings – like one with Biden special counsel Robert Hur on Tuesday – to ding the president.

What's next: The hearing is "moving forward" with former Hunter Biden associates Tony Bobulinski, Devon Archer and James Galanis as witnesses, Comer said.

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