President Biden on Wednesday claimed House Republicans already knew they wanted to impeach him, most likely because they want to shut down the government, in his first remarks since Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) moved to direct House committees to open a formal impeachment inquiry.
“Well, I tell you what, I don’t know quite why, but they just knew they wanted to impeach me. Now, best I can tell they want to impeach me because they want to shut down the government,” Biden said at a campaign reception in McLean, Va.
“Everybody always asked about impeachment. I get up every day not focused on impeachment, I’ve got a job to do. I’ve got to deal with issues that affect the American people every single solitary day,” Biden added before he moved on to talk to fundraiser attendees about a different subject.
The president also mentioned Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), saying she wanted to impeach him on day one of his presidency.
The impeachment fight could be an issue as Congress and the White House battle over funding the government. Lawmakers face a Sept. 30 deadline to prevent a shutdown. And Greene threatened last month to not fund the government without an impeachment inquiry.
McCarthy’s formal endorsement of impeachment follows the Oversight Committee’s investigation into the Biden family’s business dealings. It has not found that the president directly financially benefited from his son’s business or proved that he made any policy decisions because of it.
The White House earlier Wednesday reiterated their stance that Republicans have turned up no evidence that the president did anything wrong.
“That is what we heard over and over again, from their almost yearlong investigation, and that’s because the president didn’t do anything wrong. Even House Republicans have said the evidence does not exist,” press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters.
The White House has long been adamant that the president was not in business with his son, and the president has said himself that he never talked with Hunter Biden about his business dealings.
The impeachment push from the House GOP has divided the Republican Party, with a number of Senate Republicans making it clear they oppose the effort and think it lacks evidence. McCarthy decided to go forward with the inquiry without a vote, a reversal from his earlier position.
McCarthy’s formal endorsement of impeachment comes after weeks of him saying that he thought the House probes would eventually develop into an impeachment inquiry.
The White House also sent a memo to news outlets, urging them to ramp up scrutiny of the House Republicans’ moves, a pressure campaign that underscores how the impeachment drive is likely to be a major factor as the White House and GOP leaders gear up for next year’s elections.
When asked about the White House’s thinking behind the memo, Jean-Pierre told reporters, “It just laid out really kind of specifically as to how we see this process has moved forward, how there is no evidence.”
“I actually think that memo lays out pretty, in pretty good detail of why we felt it was important to put that out,” she added.
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