There is an Achilles Heel in the House Democrats’ plan to take down President Trump before the 2020 election, and its name is Hunter Biden. A concerted effort is underway to force the former VP’s son to take the stand and answer questions, just as forceful is the attempt to keep him as far away as possible. Within Hunter is the key to not only ending this impeachment investigation but also to unravel the machinations that took place in 2016.
Already, vociferous outcries are trying to make the idea that Hunter Biden could have anything to offer seem ridiculous. Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar said, “I have seen no reason why you would have Hunter Biden testify when from all the reports we’ve seen is that this is not a valid investigation.”
Her words echo those of Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) who stated:
“He has no knowledge of what the president did or didn’t do … there are certainly questions but it isn’t relevant to this week’s hearing.”
Yet this running of interference shows one thing with immense clarity: Dems are terrified of Hunter Biden taking the stand.
If Republicans grasp the opportunity to grill Biden, they will likely be able to show two things. The first being that Hunter Biden was uniquely unqualified for the role he was awarded in Burisma Holding energy company. The second that his father, vice president at the time, did exactly the thing that President Trump is now being accused of.
Indeed, Joe Biden himself has openly admitted that he told Ukrainian officials to remove a prosecutor in exchange for a billion dollars in loans. What’s more, he also implicated President Obama in the Quid Pro Quo.
And while it may be argued that just because one administration engaged in this kind of activity does not exonerate another from doing so, it is highly unlikely that House Democrats would be willing to trash the Obama legacy and possibly even open up criminal investigations into their former leader.
Diplomacy or Extortion?
Explaining away the very same actions of the previous administration would then rest on the idea that Joe Biden, acting under orders from Barack Obama, was engaged in hardball diplomacy. Using cash payments and loans to influence foreign powers is not new, nor is it particularly frowned upon. Think never-ending foreign aid. The question becomes whether it was done in the name of national interest or personal gain.
President Trump’s advocates should have little difficulty in crafting the idea that, in the words of Richard Nixon, “People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook.” This applies to past presidents, too. It may be trickier for Hunter Biden to assert that his father was not merely trying to protect his multi-million-dollar payday.
To the Very Top
Unlike the impeachment investigations into Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton, no special prosecutor has been appointed; in this case, the House Committees are acting in the role. To the American people, it’s difficult to see how this cannot be considered a case of the House acting as Judge, Jury, and Executioner. It’s a tough sell. But it’s the only way they can steer the investigation only into areas they are confident will not implicate one of their own.
Should Republicans succeed in getting Hunter Biden to testify, the whole narrative of the impeachment investigation will change. If they don’t, they can frame it as a partisan exercise uninterested in seeking the whole truth.
Democrats may have opened a can of worms they cannot close.
Read more from Mark Angelides.