WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- More than 30 Senate Republicans are demanding for a special counsel to investigate Hunter Biden.
- The senators asked AG Merrick Garland to give U.S. Attorney David Weiss “special counsel protections and authorities.”
- If the attorney general grants the request, it could give Congress insight into the grounds on whether to prosecute the president’s son.
More than 30 Republican senators are calling on Attorney General Merrick Garland to give the prosecutor investigating Hunter Biden special counsel authority.
The group, led by Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, wrote a letter warning of potential political interference in the high-profile investigation.
Delaware U.S. Attorney David Weiss, a prosecutor appointed by former President Donald Trump, is conducting the investigation.
“As detailed by Senator Grassley, ‘highly credible’ whistleblower have come forward to detail a ‘widespread effort within the FBI to downplay or discredit negative information about’ Hunter Biden,” the letter reads. “Instead of encouraging FBI and DOJ whistleblower to report crimes and promote government transparency, you took the inexplicable step of chilling lawful whistleblower activity.”
It continues: “Indeed, on August 30, 2022… you issued a memorandum prohibiting DOJ and FBI employees from communicating with ‘Senators, Representatives, congressional committees, or congressional staff without advance coordination, consultation and approval by OLA.’”
In July, Fox News reported that the Hunter Biden probe has reached a “critical stage,” with possible charges for tax violations, possible foreign lobbying violations and more.
When Biden won the 2020 election, his administration asked Weiss to stay in his role even amid turnover at many other U.S. attorney positions to avoid the appearance of political interference.
The group of Republican senators says that is not enough.
“Given the politicization of the DOJ under your watch and the importance of avoiding any appearance of impropriety, the undersigned request that you provide U.S. Attorney Weiss the full protections and authorities of a special counsel,” the letter said. “This is one important action that you can take that will go a long way to restoring faith in our governmental institutions.”
Garland in Senate testimony earlier this year defended the Justice Department’s handling of the investigation, particularly in leaving Weiss, a Trump appointee, in charge of it. The attorney general, however, declined to specifically address the issue of whether to appoint a special counsel to look into the younger Biden and his business affairs.
“The investigation is being run and supervised by the United States attorney in Delaware who is an appointee of the previous administration, and continues on as the United States attorney,” Garland said under questioning from Sen. Mike Braun of Indiana.
“The question of whether to have a special counsel is one that’s internal decision-making in the department so I don’t want to make any judgments one way or another,” he added. “But I’m quite comfortable with the United States attorney for that district continuing in the role he’s playing.”
Source: New York Post