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HomeAuslandInvestigations now officially confirmed: US Republicans intensify inquiries into Biden's impeachment

Investigations now officially confirmed: US Republicans intensify inquiries into Biden’s impeachment

The Republicans in the US House of Representatives are pushing forward with investigations into a potential impeachment procedure against US President Joe Biden and officially formalizing the inquiries. The chamber voted with the majority of Republicans on Wednesday (local time) to proceed with the investigations and to “formalize” them. This is a technical step, from which the Republicans hope for more legal leverage in their investigations. An impeachment procedure against the President is not being initiated. “Instead of doing something to improve the lives of Americans, they are focusing on attacking me with lies,” Biden responded to the vote.

No clear evidence so far

Some Republicans accuse the Democrat Biden of abusing his public office for the financial benefit of his family. However, they have not yet presented clear evidence of serious misconduct. Biden refutes the allegations. On Wednesday, the President accused the Republicans of remaining inactive on key issues such as the approval of further aid to Ukraine. Instead, they are “wasting” their time with a “political stunt.”

The representatives in the House voted 221 to 212 in favor of the formal initiation of the investigations. The Democrats unanimously voted against. The now dismissed Republican chairman of the congressional chamber, Kevin McCarthy, had initiated the investigations in September. However, he hesitated to put it to a vote in the parliamentary chamber. His concern was that some more moderate Republicans might vote against it. This has not happened now.

Vote intended to create legal basis

The Republicans involved in the investigations argued in the past weeks that they lacked the necessary legal basis for subpoenas or document requests. Although the White House had provided documents, the Republicans believe these are not sufficient. The new Republican chairman of the chamber, Mike Johnson, gave in to the right wing of his party by voting, thereby officially pushing for the investigations. With the current vote, it is ensured that the investigations are likely to span the entire 2024 presidential election campaign.

It is questionable whether an impeachment procedure will actually follow the investigations. This would first require a majority in the House of Representatives. Although the Republicans have a narrow majority there, several more moderate Republicans have recently expressed criticism of the plan. They might possibly shy away from actually initiating proceedings. Even if successful in the House of Representatives, the other congressional chamber, the Senate, would have to decide on the impeachment of the President. The Democrats have a narrow majority there. Therefore, it is currently considered unlikely that the President would be convicted and removed from office.

Focus on Biden’s son Hunter

Several Republicans repeatedly link the President to the business dealings of his son Hunter Biden. On Wednesday morning (local time), Hunter Biden, who is facing potential tax offenses among other charges, appeared before the US Congress and offered to testify in a public hearing on the impeachment proceedings against his father. The Republicans had summoned him to testify behind closed doors. However, he declined for strategic reasons. “Let me be as clear as possible,”that my father was not financially involved in my business,” emphasized Hunter Biden.

The former US President Donald Trump has repeatedly urged his party colleagues in the past to initiate an impeachment process against Biden. During Trump’s tenure, Democrats in Congress initiated two impeachment proceedings against him. The Republican was the first president in US history to face two such impeachment proceedings in the Senate – one for abuse of power and one for the violent storming of the US Capitol by his supporters. He was acquitted in both cases by the Senate, where his party still had control at the time.

Meanwhile, the campaign for the next presidential election is also underway, with Biden and Trump vying to become the candidates for their respective parties. Trump is in the midst of the election campaign facing four indictments in criminal proceedings – two of them related to his attempts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

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