Latest News 17-01-2024 05:40 8 Views

House Rules panel pauses consideration of Hunter Biden contempt amid negotiations for new deposition date

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The House Rules Committee will not consider the resolutions to hold Hunter Biden in contempt of Congress as planned on Tuesday amid negotiations between House Republicans and the first son to schedule a deposition.

The committee was set to meet Tuesday afternoon to consider the resolutions that would hold the president's son in contempt, setting up the potential for a full vote on the House floor on whether to recommend him prosecution.

The House Oversight Committee and the House Judiciary Committee last week passed resolutions to hold Hunter Biden in contempt of Congress for defying a congressional subpoena as part of the House impeachment inquiry against President Biden. 

But on Friday, Hunter Biden's attorneys offered to discuss scheduling a new deposition for the first son. Now, House Republicans are in negotiations to do so. 

'Following an exchange of letters between the parties on January 12 and January 14, staff for the committees and lawyers for Hunter Biden are working to schedule Hunter Biden’s appearance,' a spokesperson for the House Oversight Committee told Fox News Digital in a statement. 'Negotiations are ongoing this afternoon, and in conjunction with the disruption to member travel and cancelling (sic) votes, the House Rules Committee isn’t considering the contempt resolution today to give the attorneys additional time to reach an agreement.'

Hunter Biden, ahead of his subpoenaed deposition on Dec. 13, had offered to testify publicly. House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer, R-Ky., and Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, rejected his request, noting that the first son would not have special treatment and pointing to the dozens of other witnesses who have appeared as compelled for their interviews and depositions. Comer and Jordan vowed to release the transcript of Hunter Biden’s deposition.

The first son, though, defied the subpoena, ignored the offer and recently delivered a public statement outside the Capitol. At the time, he said his father 'was not financially involved in my business.'

As the House advanced the resolutions to continue to take steps to hold Hunter Biden in contempt, his attorney, Abbe Lowell, last week asked that the committees issue a new subpoena. 

Lowell penned a letter to the committees on Friday, saying the initial subpoenas were 'legally invalid' as they were issued before the full House of Representatives voted to formalize the impeachment inquiry against the president. 

'If you issue a new proper subpoena, now that there is a duly authorized impeachment inquiry, Mr. Biden will comply for a hearing or deposition,' Lowell wrote. 'We will accept such a subpoena on Mr. Biden's behalf.' 

Comer and Jordan sent a letter to Lowell over the weekend, stating that they would be willing to subpoena him a second time if that meant his cooperation in their probe.

'The committees welcome Mr. Biden’s newfound willingness to testify in a deposition setting under subpoena,' Comer and Jordan wrote.

'Although the Committee’s subpoenas are lawful and remain legally enforceable, as an accommodation to Mr. Biden and at your request, we are prepared to issue subpoenas compelling Mr. Biden’s appearance at a deposition on a new date in the coming weeks.'

Fox News' Chad Pergram contributed to this report.


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