Special Counsel David Weiss, who has been probing Hunter Biden for multiple years, provided testimony to members of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, and reports suggest that during the closed-door session, he confirmed at least part of what whistleblowers said earlier this year about his authority to charge the first son during earlier parts of the investigation, as Breitbart explains.
According to ABC News, it is rather unusual for a special counsel such as Weiss to present himself before Congress while an investigation is still ongoing, and as such, he likely did not reveal a great deal about where things currently stand.
Even so, Weiss did appear to make some news during his appearance, at least in the realm of what had previously appeared to be conflicting accounts of how much power he had to bring charges against Hunter Biden over a series of years.
Following the interview with Weiss, Judiciary panel chair Jim Jordan (R-OH) indicated that the special counsel stated that in 2022, he lacked the powers to charge Biden, a state of affairs that had been alleged by two IRS whistleblowers earlier this year.
It was in June that Attorney General Merrick Garland asserted that Weiss had long had “complete authority to make all decisions” regarding potential tax charges against Hunter Biden,” but, according to Jordan, that was not exactly what the special counsel described this week.
Jordan said, “When he was specifically asked, 'Did you ever request special attorney authority under Section 515?' Mr. Weiss' response was 'Yes' in the spring of 2022.”
The congressman went on to state that, according to Weiss' testimony, he did seek such status, but it was not granted, and he therefore lacked the authority that he and Garland claim he had the entire time he was probing Biden, not just after he was formally named special counsel this past August.
Jordan went on, “So to me, that's the key takeaway. He won't answer a lot of questions. But that's the key takeaway because this whole deposition was about the changing story we got from DOJ regarding the authority that he had.”
Weiss' response, Jordan opined, “is entirely consistent with what Mr. [IRS whistleblower Gary] Shapley said” after a meeting in October of 2022, when he claimed that Weiss asked for special counsel powers but was denied by the DOJ.
The special counsel, for his part, issued a statement on Tuesday saying that he was never “blocked, or otherwise prevented from pursuing chargers or taking the steps necessary in the investigation by other United States Attorneys, the Tax Division or anyone else at the Department of Justice.”
Unmoved by Weiss' claims, however, was Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), who suggested that it does not explain why no charges were then brought against Hunter Biden for criminal violations revealed by the probe or why he was offered what many called a sweetheart plea deal on other offenses, and agreement which, as it turned out, collapsed over the summer under scrutiny from the presiding judge.
Issa said, “The important thing is that he has no answers for why he would offer a misdemeanor plea bargain with no jail time to someone who committed felonies and would exclude all unknown or yet-to-be-investigated crimes.”
“It's that lack of explanation that leads us to all the other questions of whether he was influenced by others or in consultation with others,” Issa added, referencing suspicions held by many that political interference occurred over the course of the probe of the president's son.
Rep, Matt Gaetz (R-FL) concurred in that assessment, saying, "Anytime we had any questions about any communication regarding the Department of Justice...he would demur and say that it was just part of his deliberative process. Well, the reason Congress has questions is because the deliberative process has resulted in some pretty bizarre outcomes,” but whether the truth of what happened will ever be fully teased out, only time will tell.