The House Judiciary Committee and the Justice Department continue to discuss how and when special counsel David Weiss will appear before Congress, the Washington Examiner reported.
The DOJ has blocked witnesses from complying with congressional subpoenas in House investigations into President Joe Biden’s alleged influence peddling during his son Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings.
The department, though, has not pulled the plug on Weiss appearing, the Examiner reported Wednesday.
Issues being discussed include whether Weiss would testify publicly or sitting for a transcribed interview behind closed doors, an option often preferred by investigators because staff experts can lead the questioning and the interviews tend to yield more useful information, the Examiner reported.
It’s also not a certainty Weiss will appear before the panel.
DOJ officials have refused to make available for interviews more than 11 witnesses requested by House Republicans, who are weighing their options for challenging the obstruction.
“The Justice Department is nothing if not predictable,” Jonathan Turley, constitutional law professor at George Washington University, told the Examiner. “The Justice Department can clearly answer some of these questions without jeopardizing any investigation.”
Two days before Hunter Biden’s plea deal over tax evasion and a gun charge fell apart at a July 26 court hearing, The DOJ offered to allow Weiss to testify at a public hearing before the Judiciary Committee as soon as Sept. 27.
“While testimony at this early juncture must be appropriately limited to protect the ongoing matter and important confidentiality interests, the Department acknowledges your stated interest in addressing aspects of this matter in the near term,” Assistant Attorney General Carlos Uriarte wrote July 24 to GOP committee chair.
Attorney General Merrick Garland on Aug. 11 named Weiss, the U.S. attorney in Delaware, special counsel in the Hunter Biden probe after the two sides failed to finalize a plea deal.
The DOJ last week said it will not cooperate with a House committee’s subpoenas for two FBI agents involved in the department’s investigation of Hunter Biden because the Judiciary Committee had prohibited department lawyers at the agents’ depositions.
Uriarte told committee Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, his subpoenas to the two agents, special agents Thomas Sobocinski and Ryeshia Holley of the FBI’s Baltimore Field Office, “lack legal effect and cannot constitutionally be enforced.”
An IRS whistleblower testified that the two FBI agents attended an Oct. 7, 2022, meeting at which Weiss said the DOJ denied his request for special counsel status, and two U.S. attorneys appointed by President Biden had blocked Weiss’ ability to charge Hunter Biden in the proper jurisdictions.
The Examiner reported the two FBI agents eventually could appear for transcribed interviews, which still carry the penalty of perjury, accompanied by department lawyers.
Charlie McCarthy ✉
Charlie McCarthy, a writer/editor at Newsmax, has nearly 40 years of experience covering news, sports, and politics.
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