Washington—— House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced Tuesday that House Republicans will continue their impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden.
“Today, I directed the House committees to launch a formal impeachment inquiry into President Joe Biden,” McCarthy said at the U.S. Capitol.
“This logical next step will give our committee full authority to gather complete facts and answers for the American public,” he added.
McCarthy has made it clear he will vote on an impeachment inquiry, but so far he doesn’t appear to have the votes to launch one.
A campaign to persuade diehards like Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., is already underway. Buck will receive a briefing from House Oversight Committee staff this week on the investigation into President Joe Biden, according to people familiar with the matter.
McCarthy has for weeks hinted at an impeachment inquiry into Biden.
Back in August, he told Fox News that an impeachment inquiry would be a “natural step” and that he believed it “provides Congress with the highest legal authority to get all the information it needs.” So far, Republicans have been unable to prove any wrongdoing by President Biden.
White House spokesman Ian Sams responded to McCarthy’s comments at the time in a social media post: “What is ‘a natural step’ based on?”
“This madness is not rooted in facts (and) truth but in partisan shamelessness,” Sams wrote on X (formerly Twitter).
While McCarthy has privately told Republicans he plans to launch an impeachment inquiry, he has not specified when.
McCarthy’s endorsement comes as he hopes to stave off a possible revolt from conservative hardliners and avoid a government shutdown.
The House will adjourn Tuesday, with a fast-approaching Sept. 30 deadline to pass a spending measure to keep the government open. House Republican leaders are seeking to pass a continuing resolution, or short-term funding extension, to buy more time to hammer out the details of the broader funding package.
But members of the House Freedom Caucus — which blocked McCarthy’s promotion to speaker and opposed his debt limit deal with President Joe Biden — said they would not support moving forward with the resolution unless it included some provisions on border security. wording, and “weaponizing the Department of Justice.”
The group also opposes further aid to Ukraine, which could put the House at odds with Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.
Amid the tension, Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz publicly threatened to file a resignation motion against McCarthy. The motion would force a vote on whether McCarthy should remain speaker.
McCarthy brushed off the threat, telling reporters Monday night: “He should keep doing this… Matt’s, Matt’s.”
“We’ve got a lot of work to do – we’ve got a lot of work to do in September. We’re going to do our job like we’ve been doing,” McCarthy added.