Congressional Republicans ‘should definitely’ begin the impeachment process for President Joe Biden over allegations by whistleblowers that there was interference in a government investigation into his son Hunter, the GOP presidential candidate said Thursday. , Nikki Haley.
When asked on Fox News host Greg Gutfeld’s show, “Gutfeld!” why Republicans can’t start impeaching the president now, Haley said, “Well, they absolutely should.”
The comments from Haley, a former governor of South Carolina and ambassador to the United Nations under former President Donald Trump, came as House Republicans seek to question Justice Department and IRS officials on allegations of interference in an investigation into Hunter Biden. .
The chairs of the House Oversight, Judiciary, and Ways and Means committees are seeking interviews with more than a dozen officials involved in the investigation of tax-related crimes allegedly committed by Hunter Biden.
When discussing the IRS whistleblower, Haley said the person was “actually legit.”
“You’re not just talking about some guy who showed up and decided to say something,” Haley said.
Gary Shapley, an IRS Criminal Investigations Supervisory Special Agent who has worked for the agency since 2009, testified before the House Ways and Means Committee in May, and the committee made the transcript available this month.
Among Shapley’s allegations is that David Weiss, the U.S. attorney in Delaware, sought permission to hit Hunter Biden with broader charges in Washington, D.C., and California, but U.S. attorneys in those districts won’t. haven’t done it.
The Justice Department denied the allegations. “As Attorney General and U.S. Attorney David Weiss have said, U.S. Attorney Weiss has full authority over this case, including the responsibility to decide where, when, and whether to file charges as he deems appropriate. He doesn’t need any other approval to do so,” said Wyn Hornbuckle, deputy director of the Justice Department’s Office of Public Affairs.
Shapley also alleged to the committee that as an IRS investigator, he obtained messages that Hunter Biden sent on the WhatsApp platform, including one he read demanding payment from a businessman. Chinese named Henry Zhao. In the post, Biden seemed to suggest he was sitting with his father, then the former vice president, saying, “I’m going to make sure that between the man sitting next to me and every single person I he knows and my ability to always hold a grudge that you will regret not following my instructions.
President Biden has denied any involvement in the text message, and a lawyer for Hunter Biden said Friday that the alleged screenshots of the text message are “not real and contain myriad issues.”
On Thursday, Haley said, “All we’re asking for is fairness. If Trump did something wrong? GOOD. Let’s check it out. Let’s see what happens. He has a jury. He can defend himself. If Biden did something wrong, great, but we have to check it out. They have to.
A campaign spokesperson made it clear Friday that Haley wants lawmakers to exercise oversight that could lead to impeachment.
“Nikki thinks Congress needs to determine if Joe Biden has committed crimes or other unfathomable offenses since the Justice Department refuses to do so. This process begins with a congressional oversight investigation,” Ken Farnaso said in a statement.
Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a GOP presidential candidate who has been more critical of Trump, said Friday he does not yet believe Biden should be impeached.
“While the whistleblower allegations are serious and should be investigated, impeachment should not be an option until the investigation shows corrupt action by the president,” he said. he said in a statement. “Impersonation should not be used as a political weapon, but reserved for serious mischief. The facts should determine what action, if any, Congress should take and impeachment should not precede a thorough investigation.
Hunter Biden has agreed to plead guilty to two federal misdemeanors for willfully failing to pay federal income tax, according to a court filing. He also faces a separate charge of possession of firearms which will likely be dismissed if he meets certain conditions, according to court documents.
His plea hearing is scheduled for July 26. Two sources familiar with the tax violations plea agreement said it includes a provision in which the U.S. attorney agreed to recommend probation.
Republicans blasted the deal as a “love deal.”
CORRECTION (June 30, 2023, 7:49 p.m. ET): A previous version of this article misrepresented Haley’s impeachment remarks. She said Republicans should start impeachment proceedings for Biden, not that they should vote to impeach him. He also misstated the date of Haley’s remarks. She spoke Thursday, not Friday.
This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com