Impeachment inquiry: GOP threatens to subpoena Biden official who led Ukraine anti-corruption efforts – Washington Examiner

House Republicans warned a Biden administration senior energy adviser on Tuesday that they would compel him to testify if he does not comply voluntarily with their investigation into President Joe Biden’s past actions toward Ukraine.

Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and James Comer (R-KY), two chairmen leading the GOP’s impeachment inquiry into Biden, told Amos Hochstein they would “resort to a compulsory process,” that is, subpoenaing him, if he continues to refuse to meet with them, according to a letter the chairmen wrote to Hochstein obtained by the Washington Examiner.

In 2020, Hochstein testified to the Senate about how he had spoken in separate conversations to Joe Biden and his son Hunter in 2015 about Hunter Biden’s position on the board of Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian energy company.

Hochstein was largely the person at the State Department responsible for leading the United States’s efforts to combat corruption in Ukraine at the time, he told senators during his testimony.

One of the actions then-Vice President Joe Biden took during that time was to force the firing of a Ukrainian prosecutor, which he did on Dec. 7, 2015. The prosecutor had been investigating Burisma, and Jordan and Comer have repeatedly claimed that his firing worked to benefit Hunter Biden.

Hunter Biden’s board position with Burisma was lucrative. He had accepted the job in 2014 for an annual salary of roughly $1 million, according to the Department of Justice. He held the position through 2019, but his salary was cut in half in March 2017, two months after his father left the vice presidency.

White House counsel Richard Sauber argued to the chairmen this month that they did not need to speak with Hochstein because they would be conducting an interview that was “entirely duplicative” of the one Hochstein had with the Senate in 2020, according to a letter obtained by the Washington Examiner.

“Reinterviewing witnesses in the vain hope they might say something different and support your baseless conspiracy theories is not legitimate oversight. There is nothing more to investigate,” Sauber wrote.

Hochstein told the Senate during his testimony that he spoke in separate meetings with both Joe and Hunter Biden about his opinion that Russia was attempting to use Hunter Biden’s name to “sow disinformation among Ukrainians.”

Hochstein said that Joe Biden pressuring Ukraine to fire the prosecutor was a “coordinated, multi-stakeholder effort” that Hochstein was part of that had nothing to do with Hunter Biden.

“The plausibility that that was somehow manipulated all for a tiny little company called Burisma that Hunter Biden was on the board of, for somebody like me that was there, I know that it’s not true,” Hochstein testified to the senators.

Sauber reiterated what Hochstein had said years earlier and called Jordan and Comer’s claims tying Joe Biden’s actions to Burisma a “classic house of cards construction.”

Jordan and Comer countered, however, that Sauber’s arguments were “unpersuasive” and that it is also common and appropriate for witnesses to testify in separate chambers of Congress. They said Sauber’s letter also “attempts to discredit direct testimony obtained by the Committees and flatly ignores other available evidence.”

They pointed to testimony they received from Devon Archer, a former business associate who said Hunter Biden had made a phone call to his father on Dec. 4, 2015, days before Joe Biden demanded the firing of the prosecutor and right after two Burisma executives asked Hunter Biden for help with handling the prosecutor’s investigation into Burisma.


Archer also testified, however, that he had no awareness of what was specifically discussed on the call and no awareness of Hunter Biden ever attempting to influence U.S. policy through his father.

Jordan and Comer asked Hochstein to contact them by April 2 to arrange an interview to avoid a subpoena.