Hunter Biden defies congressional subpoena, angering Republican leaders

Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden, talks to reporters at the US Capitol in Washington on Wednesday, December 1.  August 13, 2023. Hunter Biden lashed out at Republican investigators who have dug into his business dealings, insisting he will only testify publicly before a congressional committee outside the Capitol.  (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

(Jose Luis Magana/Associated Press)

Hunter Biden defies congressional subpoena, angering Republican leaders

Matt Hamilton

Dec. 13, 2023

Hunter Biden, the president’s son, declined to take office on Wednesday


closed-door questioning by Republican lawmakers investigating his business dealings

instead of

insisted that he would testify alone at a public hearing.

Biden had been ordered to appear for a deposition Wednesday morning as part of a subpoena from House investigators. Instead, he held a news conference outside the Capitol and read from a prepared statement attacking Republicans for “distortions, tampered evidence and lies” in their ongoing investigation into




. He claimed there was no basis for an impeachment inquiry into his father.

a democrat


“I am here today to testify at a public hearing to answer all legitimate questions from the committee,” Biden said. “Republicans don’t want an open process where Americans can see their tactics, expose their baseless research or hear what I have to say. What are they afraid of?”

The abruptly called news conference featured rare public comments from the younger Biden on his business dealings and came hours before House lawmakers were set to vote on whether to formalize the impeachment inquiry into the president.

“Let me say as clearly as possible: my father was not financially involved in my company, not as a practicing lawyer, not as a board member of Burisma, not in my partnership with a private Chinese businessman, not in my investments at home or abroad, and certainly not as an artist,” says Biden,


told reporters as he was flanked by Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin) and his attorney, Abbe Lowell.

Burisma is a Ukrainian energy company on whose board Hunter Biden sat.

“In the depths of my addiction, I was extremely irresponsible with my finances. But to suggest that this is grounds for an impeachment inquiry is beyond absurd. It is shameless. There is no evidence to support the allegations that my father was financially involved involved me.” business, because it didn’t happen.”


Representatives James Komer

of Kentucky

and Jim Jordan

of Ohio

responded by promising to initiate contempt proceedings against the younger Biden for ignoring the subpoena.

“Hunter Biden today defied a lawful subpoena, and we will now initiate contempt of court proceedings in Congress,” the couple said in a statement. “There will be no special treatment because his last name is Biden.”

That Biden refused to appear for the deposition

with the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability

was not surprising. Since House investigators issued the subpoena last month, his lawyers have repeatedly tried to make the interrogation public



to belong,

arguing that a private session would be selectively leaked

by Republicans

to maximize damage to both Hunter Biden and his father.


the chairman of the committee,

and his allies, however, insisted that the impeachment proceed.

The possibility of contempt proceedings adds to the legal troubles facing Hunter Biden. He was expected to resolve a long-running criminal investigation this summer with a plea deal that would have avoided prison time.

The deal included pleading guilty to two tax crimes and completing a diversion program that would result in a firearms charge being dismissed. But the deal collapsed after questioning by a federal judge and Atty. General Merrick Garland appointed David Weiss, the U.S. attorney for Delaware, as special counsel.

Weiss’ team has since secured two indictments against the younger Biden over the same tax and firearms issues

Has been

are covered by the plea agreement and the diversion agreement.

In Los Angeles, he was charged last week with failing to file taxes for years during his publicly documented crack cocaine addiction, along with allegations that he evaded taxes and filed a false return by improperly categorizing certain expenses, such as $1,500 in an exotic dancer or $30,000. for his daughter’s college tuition as business expenses.

Biden has since paid off his tax debts, a fact his lawyers have cited in the days since the indictment was unveiled.

He was indicted in Delaware

in September

for lying on a government form about his drug use when he bought a gun in 2018.

Biden’s lawyers filed several motions Monday to dismiss the case



against him

and made several arguments, including that the charges were pursued vindictively and selectively and were the result of a pressure campaign by lawmakers in Congress that flouted the separation of powers between the three branches of government.

His lawyers are also seeking to dismiss the case in Delaware on the grounds that it violates the law

the diversion agreement he and prosecutors signed this summer. Under that agreement, prosecutors granted Biden immunity on the firearms and tax charges


agreed to drop a firearms charge if he met certain conditions for a 24-month period, including drug testing and a ban on purchasing firearms.

Prosecutors maintain the grace period has not yet begun because the federal probation office has not signed the agreement. But Biden’s lawyers point to prosecutors’ comments in court that show the deal was and remains in effect.

“Mr. Biden, one party, entered into a deal with the plaintiff, the other party, through the Diversion Agreement,” Biden’s lawyers wrote. “Plaintiffs’ desire to seek political cover for the criticisms leveled against it does not provide them with a legal basis to renege on the Diversion Agreement.”


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