McCarthy Floats Garland Impeachment After Whistleblower Allegations

Attorney General Merrick Garland departs after delivering a statement defending the FBI's recent search of Trump's Mar-a-Lago residence. (Getty Images)
June 26, 2023

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.) said Republicans will open an impeachment investigation into Attorney General Merrick Garland if whistleblower allegations about the Justice Department’s mishandling of its Hunter Biden investigation are substantiated.

IRS investigator Gary Shapley on Thursday told Congress that Garland’s Department of Justice blocked the agency from bringing felony tax charges against Biden. Shapley alleged that U.S. Attorney David Weiss told investigators he did not have final say in bringing charges against Biden, which contradicts Garland’s claims that he would not interfere in the investigation.

McCarthy says the inconsistencies in Garland and Weiss’s statements could warrant an impeachment inquiry.

"If it comes true what the IRS whistleblowers are saying," McCarthy said Monday morning on Fox and Friends, "we’re going to start impeachment inquiries into the attorney general." The speaker said he would begin impeachment investigations into the attorney general on July 6, barring significant problems with whistleblower testimony.

McCarthy’s announcement is the latest escalation in Republicans’ investigations into Biden’s business dealings. Republicans have long suspected Biden was receiving special treatment from the Department of Justice during its criminal investigation into him. Biden was slapped with two misdemeanor tax charges and a felony gun charge that can be expunged from his record, which critics have slammed as a "sweetheart deal."

White House spokesman Ian Sams, who once modeled aprons for the failed Hillary Clinton campaign, says the push to impeach the president shows Republicans have no "positive agenda." He suggested McCarthy "should work with the president" rather than deliver "partisan stunts."

"Speaker McCarthy and the extreme House Republicans are proving they have no positive agenda to actually help the American people on the issues most important to them and their families," Sams said. "Instead of pushing more partisan stunts intended only to get themselves attention on the far right, they should work with the President to actually put the middle class and working Americans first."

Shapley and an anonymous IRS whistleblower earlier this month warned House Republicans about what they say were serious irregularities with how the Department of Justice handled its probe of Biden. Both whistleblowers say they began investigating the younger Biden in 2018, only to face numerous delays from the Justice Department.

Virtually every step of the investigation, the pair say, saw interference from Justice Department officials. The anonymous official alleged the IRS had a "slam dunk case" against the president’s son, only for Justice Department prosecutors to file minor charges.

Garland has since defended the Justice Department’s investigation into Biden and called criticisms over its conclusion "an attack on an institution that is essential to American democracy and essential to the safety of the American people."

House Republicans would use an impeachment hearing to investigate other allegations against Biden, two senior House Republican staffers told the Washington Free Beacon. That includes Shapley’s allegation that Biden threatened a Chinese businessman and invoked his father’s name over a dispute related to a more than $5 million payment.

The Free Beacon reported that Biden was at his father’s Wilmington, Delaware, residence the same day he sent that text. Rob Walker, a longtime Biden family associate, told FBI agents that he was present when Biden and his father met with the Chinese businessman’s firm in December 2020.

The anonymous whistleblower claimed that the FBI verified Hunter Biden’s laptop as authentic and not part of a foreign disinformation campaign as early as 2019, even though the agency briefed Facebook months before the election that they were expecting a "foreign dump." Facebook subsequently censored all posts and news stories referencing Biden’s hard drive in Oct. 2020.