Hunter Biden made a surprise hearing with his attorneys at the House Oversight Committee’s hearing on Wednesday morning.
The meeting was to consider the resolution that, if passed, would set up a full House vote on whether to hold Democrat President Joe Biden’s son in contempt of Congress for defying a congressional subpoena.
The subpoena was issued as part of the House impeachment inquiry against President Biden.
The House Oversight Committee met for a markup Wednesday at 10 a.m. to consider the resolution that recommends contempt proceedings against the first son.
The move came after Hunter refused to comply with a subpoena compelling him to appear for a closed-door deposition before the House Oversight and Judiciary committees.
The House Judiciary Committee is holding a similar markup on the measure recommending Biden be held in contempt of Congress.
Biden, his attorney Abbe Lowell, and Kevin Morris came to Capitol Hill Wednesday morning to sit in the audience as lawmakers on the panel consider whether to pass the resolution out of committee.
They were conveniently surrounded by corporate media photographers and reporters and as they entered the room and and sat in the audience.
If the resolution advances out of committees Wednesday, sources said a full contempt of Congress vote on the House floor could take place in the coming days.
“Our investigation has produced significant evidence suggesting President Biden knew of, participated in, and benefited from his family cashing in on the Biden name,” House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer (R-KY) said in his opening statement.
“We planned to question Hunter Biden about this record of evidence during our deposition, but he blatantly defied two lawful subpoenas.”
Comer said, “Hunter Biden’s willful refusal to comply with the committees’ subpoenas is a criminal act” that “constitutes contempt of Congress and warrants referral to the appropriate United States Attorney’s Office for prosecution as prescribed by law.”
“We will not provide Hunter Biden with special treatment because of his last name.
“All Americans must be treated equally under the law. And that includes the Bidens.”
Ahead of his subpoenaed deposition, Hunter Biden had offered to testify publicly.
Comer and Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan rejected his request, stressing that the first son would not have special treatment.
They pointed to the dozens of other witnesses that have appeared, as compelled, for their interviews and depositions.
Comer and Jordan vowed to release the transcript of Biden’s deposition.
However, Hunter Biden defied the subpoena, ignored the offer, and delivered a public statement outside the Capitol.
Committee ranking member Jamie Raskin (D-MD) blasted the move, saying there “is no precedent for the U.S. House of Representatives holding a private citizen in contempt of Congress who has offered to testify in public, under oath and on a day of the committee’s choosing.
“Chairman Comer repeatedly urged Hunter Biden to appear at a committee hearing, and Hunter Biden agreed.”
During the meeting Wednesday, lawmakers acknowledged Biden was in the audience.
Democrat lawmakers asked to have Biden take questions during the session — a request Republicans rejected.
“My first question is who bribed Hunter Biden to be here today? That’s my first question,” Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) said.
“Second question, you are the epitome of white privilege coming into the oversight committee, spitting in our face, ignoring a congressional subpoena to be deposed.
“What are you afraid of?
“You have no balls to come up here.”
“I think that Hunter Biden should be arrested right here, right now. Go straight to jail,” Mace continued.
“Our nation is founded on the rule of law.
“The law applies equally to everyone, no matter what your last name.”
“It does not matter who you are, where you come from, or who your father is, or your last name,” she added.
“Yes, I’m looking at you, Hunter Biden, as I’m speaking to you.
“You are not above the law at all.”
Mace asked the first son: “Why can’t you show up for a congressional deposition?
“You’re here for a political stunt.
“This is just a PR stunt to you.
“This is just a game that you are playing with the American people.
“You’re playing with the truth.”
However, Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-FL) defended Hunter Biden.
Moskowitz argued that if the committee wants to hear from Biden, the panel should vote and “hear from Hunter right now.”
“Who wants to hear from Hunter right now, today? Anyone? Come on,” Moskowitz said.
“Who wants to hear from Hunter?
“Yeah, no one. So I’m a visual learner, and the visual is clear.
“Nobody over there wants to hear from the witness.”
Hunter Biden and his attorneys stormed out of the hearing as soon as Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) tried to question the president’s son.
Hunter and his lawyers ultimately left the markup session before the vote on the resolution.
“Hunter Biden is and was a private citizen,” Lowell told reporters after they left the meeting.
“Despite this, Republicans have sought to use him as a surrogate to attack his father.
“And, despite their improper partisan motives, on six different occasions since February of 2023, we have offered to work with the House committees to see what and how relevant information to any legitimate inquiry could be provided.”
Lowell claimed that their “first five offers were ignored.”
“And then in November, they issued a subpoena for a behind-closed-doors deposition, a tactic that the Republicans have repeatedly misused in their political crusade to selectively leak and mischaracterize what witnesses have said,” Lowell said.
Lowell pointed to Comer’s “explicit offer that people like Hunter…had the option to attend a deposition or a public hearing, whichever they chose.”
“Hunter chose a hearing where Republicans could not distort manipulate, or misuse that testimony,” Lowell said, calling the move to consider a resolution to hold Hunter Biden in contempt of Congress “unprecedented” in light of his offer to “publicly answer all their proper questions.”
“The question there is, what are they afraid of?” Lowell asked, before departing the Capitol.
Meanwhile, last month, Comer and Jordan expanded their investigation to probe whether President Biden was involved in his son’s “scheme” to defy his subpoena for deposition earlier this month.
If so, they say such conduct “could constitute an impeachable offense.”
When making his public statement last month, Hunter Biden said his “father was not financially involved in my business.”
“No evidence to support that my father was financially involved in my business because it did not happen,” he said.
The House impeachment inquiry against President Biden was formalized by the full House last month.
The inquiry is being led by Comer, Jordan, and House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith (R-MO).