President Joe Biden boards Marine One with his son Hunter Biden as he leaves Andrews Air Force Base, Md., on his way to Camp David, Saturday, June 24, 2023InternationalIndiaAfricaJoe and Hunter Biden appear to have taken a double punch from Republican lawmakers and the US Justice Department. Does it mean they are in real trouble?First son Hunter Biden has been indicted by Special Counsel David Weiss this week of making false statements on a federal form when buying a gun in 2018 and possessing a firearm as a prohibited person. That became possible after Hunter’s plea deal with the DoJ collapsed earlier this year.The indictment came on the heels of House Republicans’ decision to launch an impeachment inquiry into US President Joe Biden on Tuesday following their long-term investigations of the Biden family’s foreign business dealings. GOP lawmakers suspect that Joe Biden could have benefitted from his son’s cash bonanza.The double-barreled legal drama comes amidst Joe Biden’s 2024 re-election campaign. Sputnik has looked into what damage the Biden family is actually facing.AmericasLife Not so Peachy for Biden as Impeachment Looms13 September, 17:28 GMT
Will Impeachment Inquiry Lead to Joe’s Removal?
The White House insists that the US president did nothing wrong and that GOP lawmakers don’t actually have any basis for the impeachment inquiry. Moreover, US legal observers have drawn attention to the fact that conviction is unlikely in the Democratic-controlled Senate.Republicans also don’t seem that united to bring the investigation to its logical end, per Steven Abramowicz, the owner and CEO of the Mill Creek View and the host of the Mill Creek View podcast.
"An impeachment inquiry would do nothing but tell us what we've already known for over a year, and that is that there were crimes committed," Abramowicz told Sputnik's Fault Lines podcast. "Okay, great. We know about the Teapot Dome. We know about Watergate. We know everything we need to know from the history books. But what we don't know is will [House Speaker] Kevin McCarthy get a backbone, stand up to the Republicans who have maybe some vested interest and actually bring this guy to the floor for an impeachment for the history books? And the answer is, you know what? It doesn't matter."
“This is September 20, 2023. There’s an election in just over a year from now. It would take way too long. And the Senate, filled with people like Mitt Romney, will never vote to remove [Joe Biden]. So I will know exactly what we already know, but it’ll be in the official record and nobody’s going to be removed from office. And the next five presidents are going to be able to say: ‘Oh, I don’t have to follow the rules because those guys did’. Whether you think Trump was a criminal or Biden’s, it doesn’t matter. We’ve had two presidents now under a cloud and no controlling legal authority, as Al Gore said, to do a darn thing about it. And I think that’s why we call it the swamp,” he continued.Americas’Time To Transition’: Biden Urged to Retire by GOP Senator Romney14 September, 05:49 GMTWhat’s especially frustrating, according to Abramowicz, is that there is reportedly a vast number of genuine documents implicating the Biden family, and still, the Democratic Party and the White House claim that there is nothing there.”That’s the tragedy of America in 2023, is that we would never have allowed Thomas Jefferson or Abraham Lincoln to get away with this stuff. And so here we are in our new era with our current batch of leaders,” the US observer emphasized.Meanwhile, prominent American legal scholar Jonathan Turley argued in one of his recent blog posts that even though the House GOP impeachment inquiry is unlikely to be supported by the US Senate, it is still worth trying.”An impeachment inquiry does not mean that an impeachment itself is inevitable. But it dramatically increases the chances of finally forcing answers to troubling questions of influence-peddling and corruption,” Turley underscored.AmericasNew Memos Hint at Biden’s Personal Interest in Firing Ukraine Prosecutor Targeting Burisma22 August, 14:21 GMT
Is Hunter Biden’s Indictment a Ruse?
To add insult to injury, the first son was indicted at the time when the GOP was closing in on the US president. Having been indicted by Weiss, Hunter faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted.Still, some US observers argue that the indictment may turn out to be a “ruse”. In particular, they suggest that the probe would be used by the DoJ as an excuse for declaring all evidence “sub judice” and off-limits to journalists (and even Republican lawmakers). In addition, the special counsel can stretch the investigation until long after the 2024 election, they say.
"Well, I'm highly skeptical. I think this sort of reeks of BS," journalist and author Daniel Lazare told Sputnik's Critical Hour podcast, when asked what he thinks about the Hunter Biden's indictment outcome.
“What I suspect is that the DoJ is throwing a bone and not even a very good bone at that in order to get people off the really important charge,” the journalist stressed, suggesting that Hunter’s alleged tax crimes were “really important” but neither the Justice Department nor Weiss appeared to have any appetite to catch the first son red-handed. As was previously suggested by a couple of IRS whistleblowers in Hunter’s case, the Justice Department simply let some damning cases expire.AmericasHunter Biden Faces Up to 25 Years in Prison in Latest Indictment14 September, 18:24 GMT
Could Huntergate Hurt Biden?
Meanwhile, the recent twist in Hunter’s legal case appears to have backfired on his father. Just the News, an US independent media, surmises that the indictment of the first son is “the latest powder keg threatening to blow up President Joe Biden’s reelection bid.”Indeed, Biden’s approval rate is fluctuating around the 41% mark, while disapproval solidly stands at over 50%. Hunter’s controversial conduct may further exacerbate the situation, given the American public’s resentment of the first son’s behavior.A YouGov poll conducted in August indicated that 66% of Americans have an unfavorable view of Hunter Biden, while only 17% have a favorable view. An Ipsos survey carried out the same month showed that 59% of Americans think that Hunter Biden is guilty of the alleged crimes, including 51% of Democrats.Hunter’s controversial business affairs and apparent influence peddling have cast a shadow on his father. Per an SSRS’ August study, 61% of Americans agreed that Joe Biden had at least some involvement in his son’s business dealings; 42% said the incumbent president acted illegally; and 18% said Joe acted unethically, while not illegally.On top of that, the most recent YouGov survey carried out on September 13 indicated that 41% of Americans oppose impeaching Biden; 44% are backing the idea of Biden’s impeachment; and 15% “don’t know”.”Joe Biden is in serious trouble. I think that essentially he’s crashing. I don’t think he will be a candidate in November 2024. (…) And I think that Bidengate or Huntergate is very serious and it’s going to really hurt him,” Lazare said.Per the journalist, there are many other aspects undermining Biden, including Ukraine’s failed counteroffensive, poor economic record, old age, and mental health questions, to name but a few.At the same time, the Bidens’ apparent corruption is backed by an impressive amount of evidence: “this is easy stuff for the public to understand,” Lazare concluded.AnalysisDo Clintons Seek to Steal Thunder From Team Biden & Cash in on Ukraine?27 August, 15:57 GMT