Comer jokes special counsel ‘plagiarized’ notes on Biden but put in Trump’s name

In an interview on Fox News in the wake of former President Donald Trump’s third indictment, House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.) said he feels like the charges Trump is now facing mirror his committee’s own observations about President Joe Biden.

“I feel like someone broke into our notes on the Oversight Committee and plagiarized them, only they put them down for Donald Trump instead of Joe Biden,” the Kentucky congressman said. 

Comer went on to say Biden has damaged the American “system of government” and is causing a loss of trust in multiple government institutions like the FBI and Department of Justice. He said Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland are using the investigations for their own “self-preservation,”

“That's the ultimate goal for the deep state bureaucracy in Washington D.C.,” Comer said. 

Democratic memo takes aim at GOP-released FBI form with Biden-Burisma allegations

Democrats on the House Oversight and Accountability Committee are poking holes in GOP arguments that President Biden is corrupt, claims that are founded on unverified allegations from an FBI form released in controversial fashion last week.

The uncorroborated allegations of Biden corruption and bribery are related to his son Hunter's business relationship with Ukrainian energy company Burisma and were part of an FBI form released by by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) last week.

The form documents information that a confidential human source relayed to an FBI agent, but does not assess that information.

While the GOP sees the document as key to its investigation of the Biden family’s business dealings, Democrats view the release as a stunning move that jeopardizes the FBI’s ability to work with confidential sources while offering no proof of any wrongdoing.

The FBI last week admonished Comer and Grassley for releasing the form.

“Chairman Comer’s and Senator Grassley’s decision to publicly release the form is in brazen disregard of the safety of FBI human sources and the integrity of its investigations,” House Oversight Committee Democratic staff wrote to Democratic lawmakers in a memo obtained by The Hill.

“Contrary to Republican messaging, the form provides no new or additional support for their corruption allegations against the President or Hunter Biden. Instead, its release merely seeks to breathe new life into years-old conspiracy theories, initially peddled by Rudy Giuliani, that have been thoroughly debunked.”

Republicans pushed back on the Democratic memo.

“The Democrats’ latest memo is another piece of garbage that should be thrown in the trash. Senator Grassley acquired the unclassified FD-1023 form through legally protected disclosures by Justice Department whistleblowers,” a GOP Oversight Committee spokesperson said in a statement. “The record is based on a trusted confidential human source’s conversations with a Burisma executive, and it has nothing to do with Rudy Guiliani.”

The tipster, dubbed CHS as short for confidential human source, relayed conversations he had with Mykola Zlochevsky, the CEO of Ukrainian energy company Burisma. Zlochevsky thought that having Hunter Biden on the board could help insulate the company from its problems with being investigated by Ukrainian authorities.

The crux of the unproven bribery allegation has been pushed by allies of former President Trump for years: that then-Vice President Biden's threat to withhold funding to Ukraine unless Prosecutor Viktor Shokin was removed was intended to benefit Burisma, which was paying his son.

But Democrats point to numerous facts and comments — including from the FBI source, from congressional Republicans and from a man who was involved in pushing these theories — that severely undercut that theory.

Some reports say that the investigation into Burisma was, in fact, dormant by the time Biden called for Shokin’s ouster. Shokin was also criticized for failure to prosecute corruption, and his ouster was supported by numerous U.S. officials as well as other European allies far beyond Biden. 

The Democratic memo also quoted numerous Republicans — including Grassley — casting doubt on the veracity of the claims in the memo. 

“Last month, Senator Johnson, who led Senate Republicans’ 2020 investigation into the allegations involving Burisma, conceded the issues with the Form FD-1023: ‘That’s what this person says, but again, take that with a grain of salt. This could be coming from a very corrupt oligarch who could be making this stuff up,’” the Democratic memo said, citing a June podcast.

“Senator Grassley also tacitly questioned the truthfulness of the allegations in the Form FD-1023 when he admitted he was ‘not interested’ in whether the accusations in the form ‘are accurate or not,’” the memo continued, pointing to a Fox News interview in June

Grassley has argued that his interest in the FBI form rests more with whether the FBI and Department of Justice adequately investigated the tip rather than in the bribery allegations themselves. 

“What did the Justice Department and FBI do with the detailed information in the document? And why have they tried to conceal it from Congress and the American people for so long?” Grassley said in a statement alongside the memo’s release last week.

But Democrats push back on that reasoning.

“Under U.S. Attorney Brady, the DOJ and FBI thoroughly investigated the allegations as part of an eight-month formal assessment, which included interviewing Mr. Giuliani and the CHS, and reviewing suspicious activity reports (SARs) from banks,” the memo said. “The FBI also confirmed to Chairman Comer and Ranking Member Raskin during the June 5, 2023, briefing that Mr. Brady’s assessment was closed in August 2020 because his team found insufficient evidence to warrant escalating the probe from an assessment to a preliminary or full investigation.”

A GOP committee spokesperson, though, pointed to public comments from Attorney General Bill Barr refuting a previous claim from Raskin that an investigation into the claims had ended. Barr told the conservative website The Federalist in June that “it was sent to Delaware for further investigation.”

The memo also notes that the FBI source could verify the veracity of Zlochevsky’s claims, explaining that “it is extremely common for businessmen in post-Soviet countries to brag or show off” and to make “bribe” payments to government officials.

Democrats focus heavily on a recent letter to Comer from Lev Parnas, a Ukrainian who was later convicted of making illegal campaign contributions to Trump, and whom Guiliani relied on to dig up dirt about the Bidens in Ukraine ahead of the 2020 election. Parnas urged Comer to abandon efforts to uncover wrongdoing by the Biden family in Ukraine.

“Never, during any of my communications with Ukrainian officials or connections to Burisma, did any of them confirm or provide concrete facts linking the Bidens to illegal activities. In fact, they asked me multiple times why our team was so concerned with this idea,” Parnas wrote in the letter to Comer last week. “The truth is that everyone [involved in this effort to discredit the Bidens] knew that these allegations against the Bidens were false. There has never been any actual evidence, only conspiracy theories spread by people who knew exactly what they were doing.”

The memo also points to information collected during the first impeachment effort, including a conversation purported to be with Zlochevsky that contradicts the FD-1023 claims of communications with President Biden.

“No one from Burisma ever had any contacts with VP Biden or people working for him during Hunter Biden’s engagement,” Zlochevsky says in the exchange, which appears to be with Vitaly Pruss, whom the letter describes as “another long-time associate of Mr. [Rudy] Giuliani, who was a close friend of Mr. Zlochevsky.”

Democrats also take the Republicans to task for sharing information the FBI expressly asked them not to release publicly. 

Raskin (D-Md.) says the publicly released form does not include all the same redactions as the version first shared with lawmakers, disclosing names of individuals in Ukraine as well as some specific locations referenced during the conversation.

“Chairman Comer and Senator Grassley chose to expose those additional details despite repeated cautioning from the FBI about the critical need to protect the safety of its human sources and its ability to conduct investigations effectively,” Raskin wrote.

Indeed, a June 9 letter obtained by The Hill shows the FBI warned Comer about GOP members’ handling of the record just the day after offering a briefing to the full committee.

“The Committee and its Members were specifically told that ‘wider distribution could pose a risk of physical harm to FBI sources or others.’ The full text of this admonishment is included below for your reference. We are concerned that Members disregarded the Committee’s agreement that information from the document should not be further disclosed. Several Committee Members publicized specific details regarding their recollection of confidential source reporting purportedly referenced in the document,” the bureau wrote in the letter.

But Republicans defend the release of the FBI form and refuted claims of it endangering a source.

“Before publicly releasing the document, redactions were made to protect the identity of the confidential human source. The FD-1023 is also unclassified and is not marked law enforcement sensitive,” a GOP Oversight Committee spokesperson said, pointing to statements from Democrats and information shared with the press that linked the document to Ukraine before it became public. “Those early public statements, based on apparent FBI or DOJ leaks, exposed the source well before the document became public.”

Despite the Democratic pushback, Republicans signal that the FBI form will fuel its investigations; Comer said in a statement last week that the form backs up his committee’s investigation of the Biden family’s business dealings.

“That sounds an awful lot like how the Bidens conduct business: using multiple bank accounts to hide the source and total amount of the money,” Comer said.

A GOP Oversight Committee spokesperson also defended release of the FBI form by linking it to another aspect of the committee’s probe into the Biden family business dealings.

When asked about the FBI form, IRS whistleblowers who looked into Hunter Biden said they had never heard of it. The GOP spokesperson said the form was “was kept from them” even though the whistleblowers had “potentially had corroborating evidence”

This story was updated at 6:13 p.m.

IRS whistleblowers on Hunter Biden case to publicly testify

The House Oversight Committee will hear from two IRS whistleblowers next Wednesday, including one whose identity has yet to be revealed, after the duo alleged an investigation into Hunter Biden was slow-walked by prosecutors.

Testimony from IRS investigator Gary Shapley and another individual identified only as Whistleblower X was shared by the House Ways and Means Committee the day after U.S. Attorney for Delaware David Weiss announced he had reached a plea deal with Biden that would require guilty pleas on two tax charges.

Shapley in particular said Biden received preferential treatment, with prosecutors hesitant to pursue search warrants. He also said Weiss was unable to bring charges in D.C., where he believes he would have had the strongest case.

“These whistleblowers provided information about how the Justice Department refused to follow evidence that implicated Joe Biden, tipped off Hunter Biden’s attorneys, allowed the clock to run out with respect to certain charges, and put Hunter Biden on the path to a sweetheart plea deal. Americans are rightfully angry about this two-tiered system of justice that seemingly allows the Biden family to operate above the law,” House Oversight Chair James Comer (R-Ky.) said in a statement.

“We need to hear from whistleblowers and other witnesses about this weaponization of federal law enforcement power. This hearing is an opportunity for the American people to hear directly from these credible and brave whistleblowers.”

Whistleblower X’s identity is set to be revealed at the afternoon hearing on July 19.

Weiss and the Justice Department have denied the claims from the whistleblowers, including specific claims that the Delaware prosecutor was denied special counsel status that would have allowed him to pursue charges in D.C.

While that facet of Shapley’s testimony is just one detail in his larger claims of mismanagement of the investigation, it’s become a central focus to Republican leadership, as Attorney General Merrick Garland said in an appearance before lawmakers that Weiss had total control of the investigation.

McCarthy first raised the prospect of a Garland impeachment in June, saying on Twitter that Shapley’s testimony could be “a significant part of a larger impeachment inquiry into Merrick Garland's weaponization of DOJ.”

“What's really concerning to me is who in this process is lying?” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said to reporters Tuesday. 

“The Attorney General has told Congress one thing, David Weiss has told others different inside these meetings. I think the best thing is bring everybody in the room and find out who's telling the truth and who's not.” 

McCarthy was referencing testimony from Shapley saying Weiss said he was unable to bring charges in D.C. or secure special counsel status.

“I would later be told by United States Attorney Weiss that the D.C. U.S. Attorney would not allow U.S. Attorney Weiss to charge those years in his district. This resulted in United States Attorney Weiss requesting special counsel authority from Main DOJ to charge in the District of Columbia. I don't know if he asked before or after the Attorney General's April 26th, 2022, statement, but Weiss said his request for that authority was denied and that he was told to follow DOJ's process,” Shapley told Ways and Means investigators.

Echoing earlier statements that he had total control over the investigation, Weiss in a Monday letter offered his clearest language yet in pushing back on Shapley’s claims.

There are two statutes on the books governing such appointments and the powers associated with them, Weiss notes, including a status allowing him to file charges outside his district of Delaware. 

“To clarify an apparent misperception and to avoid future confusion, I wish to make one point clear: in this case, I have not requested Special Counsel designation pursuant to 28 CFR § 600 et seq. Rather, I had discussions with Departmental officials regarding potential appointment under 28 U.S.C. § 515, which would have allowed me to file charges in a district outside my own without the partnership of the local U.S. Attorney,” Weiss wrote in a letter obtained by The Hill. 

“I was assured that I would be granted this authority if it proved necessary.”

Biden has agreed to plead guilty to two counts of willful failure to pay taxes and amid the five-year investigation has since paid more than $200,000 in taxes.

He also agreed to enter a pretrial diversion program relating to a failure to admit to drug use when purchasing a weapon. 

“This was a five year, very diligent investigation pursued by incredibly professional prosecutors, some of whom have been career prosecutors, one of whom at least was appointed by President Trump,” Biden attorney Chris Clark said during an appearance on MSNBC last month.

“What I can tell you is, they were very diligent, very dogged. This was – it took five years and it was five years of work that they put in, and even throughout working out the ultimate resolution, I think that they were always driving for what they thought was fair.”

This story was updated at 5:45 p.m.

Oversight Dems argue GOP overlooked information undercutting Biden allegation

A Ukrainian oligarch who ran the energy company that hired Hunter Biden to serve on its board told associates of Rudy Giuliani that Burisma never had any contacts with then-Vice President Biden while his son worked at the company.

The conversation with Mykola Zlochevsky, part of the package of information received by lawmakers during former President Trump’s first impeachment, was highlighted by the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee as evidence undercutting a GOP-led probe into an alleged bribery scheme.

“Mr. Zlochevsky’s statements are just one of the many that have debunked the corruption allegations against President Biden that were first leveled by Rudy Giuliani and have been reviewed by former President Trump’s own Justice Department,” Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) wrote in a letter to House Oversight Chair James Comer (R-Ky.).

The clash between the panel’s two parties rests on a series of unverified tips.

Under the Trump administration, the FBI and Justice Department were unable to corroborate a tip from a confidential source relaying a conversation heard secondhand that alleged Biden, while vice president, accepted a bribe. Comer has based much of his investigation on this tip, memorized in a FD-1023 form used by the FBI to document such interactions.

Raskin’s letter resurfaces a conversation with Zlochevsky — one arranged through a series of Giuliani associates in which the oligarch speaks of his decision to hire Hunter Biden.

“No one from Burisma ever had any contacts with VP Biden or people working for him during Hunter Biden's engagement,” Zlochevsky says in the exchange, which appears to be with Vitaly Pruss, whom the letter describes as “another long-time associate of Mr. Giuliani who was a close friend of Mr. Zlochevsky.”

However, the conversation was turned over to Giuliani by Lev Parnas, a Ukrainian who was later convicted of making illegal campaign contributions to former President Trump. 

Zlochevsky also answered “no” when asked if then-Vice President Biden or his staff “assisted you or your company in any way with business deals or meetings with world leaders or any other assistance.”

Raskin argues the information shows that Zlochevsky “squarely rebutted” allegations that are at the core of the GOP probe.

“As part of the impeachment inquiry against then-President Trump, Congress learned that Mr. Zlochevsky, the Ukrainian oligarch and the owner of Burisma, whom Republican Committee Members appear to have identified as the source of the allegations memorialized in the Form FD-1023, squarely rebutted these allegations in 2019,” he wrote.

“Despite being interviewed as part of a campaign by Mr. Giuliani and his proxies in 2019 and 2020 to procure damaging information about the Biden family, Mr. Zlochevsky explicitly and unequivocally denied those allegations.”

Raskin, however, also pointed to comments from Trump-era Attorney General Bill Barr that there "are a lot of agendas in the Ukraine, there are a lot of cross-currents, and we can’t take anything we receive from the Ukraine at face value.”

Comer has called on the FBI to release the form that lawmakers reviewed in a secure location weeks ago.

“If Ranking Member Raskin thinks there is nothing to the FD-1023 form, then he should join us in calling on the FBI to make it public,” Comer said.

“This unclassified record stands on its own and memorializes a confidential human source’s conversations with a Burisma executive dating back to 2015. The Burisma executive claims then-Vice President Biden solicited and received a $5 million bribe in exchange for certain actions.” 

In the conversation, Zlochevsky also says that they never asked Hunter Biden to make any outreach to the State Department.

“We never approved or asked him to conduct those meetings on behalf of Burisma,” he says.

Still, he makes clear that Hunter Biden’s hiring, as well as that of his former business partner Devon Archer, was part of an effort to help strengthen ties between Burisma and the international community.

“We wanted to [b]uild Burisma as international company. It was very important to have strong board. So when we review resumes of biden and archer they both had great resumes. We also thought it would help in Ukraine to have strong international board figures with great relationships in the United States and Europe,” Zlochevsky says.

“We believe it was worth it. It had it own advantages and disadvantages. But it general we believe our company benefited greatly from this relationship.”

Promise Kept: Marjorie Taylor Greene, Paul Gosar Reinstated to House Committees

MAGA Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar have been given committee assignments after being stripped of them in 2021 by a Democrat-controlled House.

It’s a promise new House Speaker Kevin McCarthy made, and has now kept.

Greene (R-GA) will be sitting on the House Homeland Security and Oversight Committees while Gosar (R-AZ) will take part on the House Natural Resources and Oversight Committees.

Gosar’s assignments are basically a reinstatement to committees he served on before his removal.

Greene’s roles are different, however, as she previously served on the Education and Labor Committee as well as the Budget Committee.

The Georgia lawmaker immediately celebrated her new role and vowed to “investigate the Biden administration’s violations of our laws and fund (and defund) programs to defend our border and American sovereignty.”

RELATED: McCarthy May Give Marjorie Taylor Greene, Paul Gosar ‘Better’ Committee Assignments If GOP Takes Back Congress

House Committee Shuffle

The move to reinstate Greene and Gosar to House committees comes just days after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy advised he’d be removing Reps. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), Adam Schiff (D-CA), and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) from key roles.

Schiff and Swalwell both served on the House Intelligence Committee, with the former serving as Chair. Swalwell also had a role on the Homeland Security Committee. Omar served on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Think about that for a minute – Marjorie Taylor Greene is essentially replacing Swalwell on the Homeland Security Committee.

What better symbolism for the new Congress: Kicking a man with ties to a Chinese spy off of Homeland Security and replacing him with an America First congresswoman.

Swalwell must be beside himself.

RELATED: Swalwell Lashes Out After Learning McCarthy Will Remove Him, Ilhan Omar, and Adam Schiff from Committees

Greene and Gosar are Back

Some have speculated that the committee assignments for lawmakers further to the right on the political spectrum may have been a concession by McCarthy in order to secure the Speaker’s gavel.

In reality, he’s been suggesting Greene and Gosar would be reinstated for quite some time.

“They’ll have committees,” McCarthy vowed back in November of 2021. “They may have other committee assignments.”

In fact, he added, “They may have better committee assignments.”

It seems in the case of Greene at least, the ‘better’ committee promise came to fruition.

Democrats had taken the unusual step of removing Greene and Gosar over a year ago from their House committee assignments for very specious reasons.

Gosar was removed for posting a parody cartoon showing an anime version of himself attacking President Biden and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. No serious person took it as a profound threat. Because it was a Japanese cartoon. With swords.

But Democrats, along with Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney, voted to remove him from committee. Kinzinger now works for CNN and Cheney was defeated in her primary.

Greene was removed from committee assignments over social media posts made prior to her election to office.

Both had engaged in ill-advised behavior, but nothing that warranted discipline. Democrats simply did it out of spite and because they aren’t afraid of using their power. And now they get to sit on their hands and fume over the fact that Greene and Gosar are back.

CNN also notes that Reps. Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Scott Perry of Pennsylvania have been added to the House Oversight Committee as well, a significant victory for America First lawmakers.

“The addition of the hardliners will give them the ability to shape some of the most aggressive investigations into the Biden administration,” writes CNN.

One can only hope so.

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Five investigations House Republicans are plotting if they win majority

From Hunter Biden to alleged politicization in the Department of Justice and beyond, House Republicans have been preparing for months to unleash a flood of investigatory actions and findings if they win a majority in the Nov. 8 midterm election.

Investigations would be a major tool for the House GOP, as many top policy priorities would be unlikely to make it past a filibuster in the Senate or be signed by President Biden. 

With the majority also comes the ability to dictate the focus of hearings and compel testimony and documents, including some that they may have already requested but not received, through subpoenas. That could put pressure on the Biden administration. 

The House GOP’s "Commitment to America" midterm policy and messaging plan boasts that House Republicans have already sent more than 500 requests for information and documents.

Hunter Biden and Biden family business activities

President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden leave Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Johns Island, S.C., after attending a Mass, Saturday, Aug. 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Rep. James Comer (Ky.), the top Republican on the House Oversight and Reform Committee in line to be chair of the panel, has promised hearings and probes into the Biden family’s overseas business activities.

Republicans on the committee have a copy of Hunter Biden’s laptop hard drive first revealed shortly before the 2020 election, but say that salacious video and photos in the files are not the focus.

“The reason we’re investigating Hunter Biden is because we believe he's compromised Joe Biden,” Comer told reporters in September.

A top priority for Republicans on the Oversight panel is gaining access to the Treasury Department’s suspicious activity reports from U.S. banks relating to foreign business deals from Hunter Biden and other Biden associates. Republicans have said that the Treasury Department has refused to provide the reports, and alleged that Biden family members have prompted at least 150 suspicious activity reports.

“I think that’ll go a long way towards helping us be able to uncover some questions that the American people have about the ethics, and whether or not the Biden administration is truly compromised by Hunter’s shady business dealings,” Comer said.

Alleged politicization in the Department of Justice


An aerial view of President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate Aug. 10, 2022, in Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

Republican trust in federal law enforcement agencies plummeted alongside the rise of former President Trump and special counsel Robert Meuller’s investigation into him, and the sense among the GOP that the DOJ and FBI are biased against conservatives has only grown since that time.

One top topic for a GOP House will be the DOJ’s decision to search Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in August and seize classified materials.

Republicans have requested documents from the National Archives and the FBI related to the decision to refer the matter of missing documents to the FBI and to execute the search warrant. After the raid, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) warned Attorney General Merrick Garland to “preserve your documents and clear your calendar.”

GOP interest in the DOJ extends beyond Trump, though. 

“The No. 1 thing is this weaponization of the DOJ against the American people,” House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who is likely to chair the committee in a GOP majority, said at the House GOP’s platform rollout event in September.

Jordan has said that his office has received information from more than a dozen whistleblowers who came forward with allegations of FBI bias against conservatives, including the agency retaliating against employees with conservative views.

In a major win for the House GOP, former FBI official Jill Sanborn will sit for a transcribed interview with the House Judiciary Committee on Dec. 2. Jordan and Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) sought testimony from Sanborn in relation to whistleblower claims that the FBI pressured agents to improperly reclassify cases as “domestic violent extremism.”

COVID-19 origins and policies

A health care worker in Wuhan, China during the initial COVID-19 outbreak in 2020. (Getty)

The Democratic-controlled House created a select Oversight subcommittee on the coronavirus in 2020, and Republicans have complained that the committee did not hold hearings on the origin of the virus.

report from Republicans on the select subcommittee released Wednesday pledged to keep investigating U.S. dollars that flowed to research on coronaviruses at a Wuhan, China, lab, officials who sought to squash the lab leak hypothesis, and state policies that pushed COVID-positive patients into nursing homes.

Republicans from the subcommittee hosted an expert forum, during which panelists said they thought evidence pointed to the virus originating in the Wuhan lab. 

Studies released this year point to natural origins of the virus. The U.S. intelligence community has said the virus was not created as a bioweapon.

Anthony Fauci, the chief medical adviser to President Biden who has spent decades as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, plans to step down from his government positions in December. But Republicans say that will not stop them from calling Fauci to appear before Congress to talk about the origins of the virus.

Afghanistan withdrawal

In this Aug. 21, 2021, file photo provided by the U.S. Marines, U.S. Marines with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force provide assistance at an evacuation checkpoint during at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Staff Sgt. Victor Mancilla/U.S. Marine Corps via AP)

GOP leaders have pledged to hold more hearings on the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan in August 2021 that led to the deaths of 13 service members in a bombing and the Taliban taking control of the country, saying that unanswered questions remain.

House Foreign Affairs Committee Republicans released an “interim report” on the withdrawal in August, finding that the State Department “took very few substantive steps” to prepare for the consequences in the months ahead of the August withdrawal.

The report said that the State Department failed to provide numerous materials relating to the withdrawal and forecasted the intention to use subpoena power to retrieve those documents as well as have officials sit for transcribed interviews. 

Rep. Michael Waltz (R-Fla.) on Tuesday also sent a letter to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin requesting information on how the Department of Defense has “secured, archived, and standardized operational data and intelligence” from Afghanistan. In an interview with The Hill, Waltz said that data is necessary in case the U.S. has to go back into Afghanistan to counter terror threats.

Handling of U.S.-Mexico border

Multiple Republican members of Congress have already introduced articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas as as result of the Biden administration's border policies. (Getty)

The surge of migrants at the southern border and the Biden administration’s policies that allow the migrants into the country are top campaign issues for Republicans in the midterms and would be a sharp focus in a GOP House.

“We will give [Homeland Security] Secretary [Alejandro] Mayorkas a reserved parking spot, he will be testifying so much about this,” House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) said at Republicans’ "Commitment to America" rollout event in September.

Deaths of migrants at the border, the flow of illegal drugs like fentanyl into the U.S., and the Department of Homeland Security's ending of the “Remain in Mexico” policy for asylum-seekers are other likely topics of inquiry. A letter from Republicans in April accused Mayorkas of having “disregard for the enforcement of U.S. immigration laws.”

Multiple Republicans members have introduced articles of impeachment against Mayorkas in the current Congress. McCarthy has declined to commit to impeachment of any Biden Cabinet member, saying he will not support a political impeachment, but opened the door to impeaching Mayorkas in an April stop near the U.S.-Mexico border.

“This is his moment in time to do his job. But at any time if someone is derelict in their job, there is always the option of impeaching somebody,” McCarthy said at the time.

Updated 12:47 p.m.

Greene: If McCarthy wants to make base happy, he’ll ‘give me a lot of power’

Firebrand Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) warned that the Republican base would be “very unhappy” if House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) does not give her more power if Republicans take control of the chamber next year.

In a New York Times Magazine profile on Monday examining Greene’s rise in influence and future, the Georgia congresswoman indicated that McCarthy would have to adopt her “a lot more aggressive” approach toward President Biden, whom she has introduced multiple articles of impeachment against.

“I think that to be the best Speaker of the House and to please the base, he’s going to give me a lot of power and a lot of leeway,” Greene said. “And if he doesn’t, they’re going to be very unhappy about it. I think that’s the best way to read that. And that’s not in any way a threat at all. I just think that’s reality.”

McCarthy, who is aiming to become Speaker in a House majority, has given the confrontational right flank of the House GOP a seat at the table as he aims to shore up support. Greene was in attendance at a House GOP “Commitment to America” midterm policy and platform rollout event in Pennsylvania last month.

Greene was stripped of her committee assignments soon after being sworn into office as punishment for her posts about conspiracy theories and liking a Facebook comment that called for the assassination of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). 

McCarthy has pledged to restore Greene’s committee assignments, suggesting at one point that she could have even “better committees” than the ones she was assigned to before – the Education and Labor and Budget committees.

“I would like to be on Oversight,” Greene told the New York Times Magazine. “I would also like to be on Judiciary. I think both of those I’d be good on.”

Republicans on both the House Oversight and Reform and House Judiciary committees have been preparing to bring a spotlight to the business activities of Biden’s son Hunter Biden’s business activities and social media suppression of an election-season 2020 New York Post story revealing the contents of his laptop.

The committees have helped to skyrocket Republican members to stardom in the past.

“I completely deserve it. I’ve been treated like [expletive]. I have been treated like garbage,” Greene said.

Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), ranking member on the House Oversight and Reform Committee who is in line for the chairmanship in a GOP majority, indicated that he would welcome Greene to his committee.

“If Americans entrust Republicans with the majority next Congress, we look forward to the Steering Committee adding new GOP members to the committee like Rep. Greene with energy and a strong interest in partnering with us in our efforts to rein in the unaccountable Swamp and to hold the Biden Administration accountable for its many self-inflicted crises that it has unleashed on the American people,” Comer told New York Times Magazine.

Gowdy to Dems Calling For Barr Resignation: “Dumbest Damn Thing I’ve Ever Heard”

Former House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy blasted Democrats demanding the resignation of Attorney General Bill Barr, calling it the “dumbest damn thing (he’s) ever heard.”

The left has been in quite a tizzy after President Trump lashed out at federal prosecutors via Twitter for recommending an excessive prison sentence for former associate Roger Stone.

The Department of Justice earlier this week revealed that they would seek a reduction of the “extreme” sentencing request – nine years – setting off a firestorm of controversy that culminated in four career prosecutors quitting the case one by one.

The issue seems to be a matter of timing. The announcement was made after Trump’s tweet, giving the impression that Barr and the DOJ were reacting to the comments.

Gowdy says none of it is true.


RELATED: Juanita Broaddrick Whacks ‘Bottom Dwelling Slug’ Hillary After She Calls Trump a ‘Failed-State Fascist’

He’s Seen Some Pretty Dumb Things

The former Representative from South Carolina has certainly seen some dumb things during his career, but this one apparently takes the cake. The argument is two-fold.

First, Gowdy agrees with the President that Stone’s sentence is beyond the pale.

“There are child pornographers, people who rob banks who do not get nine years,” he noted before advising that a sentence of two or three years would be more appropriate.

Second, he explains that there is roughly a zero percent chance Barr was swayed by the President’s comments.

“I can tell you this: Bill Barr was aware of this recommendation before President Trump ever tweeted a single syllable, a single character,” said Gowdy. “So the notion that Barr was somehow motivated to move because of this tweet is just factually wrong.”

“The notion that Barr should resign is about the dumbest damn thing I’ve ever heard,” Gowdy added.


RELATED: New Trump Impeachment Push For Democrats Over Roger Stone Affair?

Barr Is Fully Within His Rights

To absolutely nobody’s surprise, Democrats, permanently housed in their perpetual outrage echo chamber, are using the DOJ’s actions as their latest effort to force an administration member out of office.

Senators Elizabeth Warren and Richard Blumenthal demanded Barr step down on Wednesday. The House Judiciary Committee promised to interrogate him over his handling of the sentencing during a hearing in late March.

Failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton accused Trump and his administration of operating like a “failed-state fascist.”

There has even been talk of more articles of impeachment.

“I can tell you this: Bill Barr was aware of this recommendation before President Trump ever tweeted a single syllable, a single character,” explained Gowdy. “So the notion that Barr was somehow motivated to move because of this tweet is just factually wrong.”

And while the former Rep. wishes Trump – or any other President – would cease weighing in on ongoing investigations, he concluded that he was well within his rights to commute Stone’s sentence or pardon him, should he so desire.

“He could do it [pardon Stone] by tweet tonight,” insisted Gowdy. “He’s the head of the executive branch and people have a chance in November if they want a different one.”

Imagine the outrage when President Trump announces Stone’s pardon via tweet. That will be about the “dumbest damned thing you’ll ever see.”

Until the next faux outrage.

The post Gowdy to Dems Calling For Barr Resignation: “Dumbest Damn Thing I’ve Ever Heard” appeared first on The Political Insider.