Republicans in the House are closing in on a potential impeachment of President Joe Biden, after the GOP released a resolution on Thursday that will formalize its impeachment inquiry.
Media outlet The Hill reports that a full vote of the House about the impeachment inquiry is likely to take place next week. It follows months of work that GOP representatives have been doing behind the scenes to lay the groundwork for the inquiry.
In September, then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced that an impeachment inquiry into Biden was underway. Now, three months later, a resolution that authorizes that inquiry was put forth.
The inquiry would give three leaders of House committees who are overseeing probes into Biden more power to wrangle up documents and witnesses to support their case.
According to the resolution, the panels are “directed to continue their ongoing investigations as part of the House of Representatives inquiry into whether sufficient grounds exist for the House of Representatives to exercise its Constitutional power to impeach Joseph Biden.”
An official markup for that impeachment resolution has already been scheduled for next Tuesday.
Republicans in the House believe that by authorizing the inquiry formally, it would give them more legal weight for their probe. This could prove particularly valuable as they look to compel certain evidence, especially if the battle over that evidence makes its way to court.
It’s very likely that the White House and Democrats as a whole are going to be uncooperative with the probe. Last month, for instance, the White House said the inquiry is unconstitutional, since the whole House hadn’t formalized it yet.
This week, Republican Jim Jordan, the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, said that while he disagreed with that assessment, the letter from the White House pushed the GOP to formalize their inquiry.
As he said to reporters:
“Constitutionally, it’s not required. Speaker said we’re [in] an impeachment inquiry, [then] we’re in an impeachment inquiry. But, if you have a vote of the full House of Representatives and the majority say we’re in that official status as part of our overall oversight work or constitutional oversight duty that we have, it just helps us in court.”
Democrats have already started a rhetoric campaign to try to show that impeaching Biden isn’t warranted. They’ve pointed to the comments that moderate Republicans and those in swing states that have cast doubt on whether it’s realistic.
The White House have also pointed to how Republicans acted when the impeachment of former President Donald Trump began before a formal vote was taken.
Those Republican members who made those comments, though, have also said that taking a vote to authorize a formal impeachment inquiry into Biden is a significantly different thing than actually voting on articles of impeachment.
In other words, they may feel that launching a formal inquiry into whether Biden broke any laws or violated his oath of duty could be worth it, even if they eventually were to vote against his formal impeachment.