US President Joe Biden on Wednesday made his first public comments on House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s potential impeachment inquiry against him, linking the inquiry to the upcoming showdown over funding the government, CNN reported.
“Well, I tell you what, I don’t know quite why, but they just knew they wanted to impeach me. Now, best I can tell they want to impeach me because they want to shut down the government,” Biden said, according to a pool reporter in the room.
“Everybody always asked about impeachment. I get up every day not focused on impeachment, I’ve got a job to do. I’ve got to deal with issues that affect the American people every single solitary day,” added Biden.
Congress faces a September 30 deadline to keep the government open and McCarthy is facing deep divisions within his own conference about how to handle the matter.
Biden’s comments come a day after McCarthy announced that House Republicans will launch an impeachment inquiry against Biden over “allegations of abuse of power, obstruction and corruption" in his involvement with the foreign business dealings of his son Hunter Biden.
“House Republicans have uncovered serious and credible allegations into President Biden’s conduct. Taken together, these allegations paint a picture of a culture of corruption,” McCarthy said.
“They warrant further investigation by the House of Representatives. That’s why today I am directing our House committees to open a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden,” he added.
The inquiry surrounds Hunter Biden's business dealings in Ukraine and China while Biden was Vice President during the Obama Administration, as well as efforts to obstruct investigations into the matter in the years since.
Hunter Biden agreed to plead guilty to misdemeanor charges related to his failure to pay income taxes earlier this year, but while standing in court waiting to enter the plea, the agreement fell apart over confusion about a separate gun charge.
Last week, the Justice Department announced that Special counsel David Weiss intends to seek an indictment against Biden relating to the gun charges by the end of the month.
Weiss was appointed special counsel in the Biden probe by US Attorney General Merrick Garland last month.