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Opinion Republicans’ 2023 agenda: Hunter Biden, Hunter Biden, Hunter Biden

Hunter Biden attends the White House Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House on April 18. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
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Republicans have been cagey about what their agenda would be if they gain control of Congress in November. “I’ll let you know when we take it back,” is all Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) will tell voters.

Why so reticent? Because while Americans worry about such things as inflation and the war in Ukraine, the top concerns of congressional Republicans can be ranked roughly as follows:

1) Hunter Biden

2) Hunter Biden

3) Hunter Biden

4) Hunter Biden

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This, at least, is the impression given by Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), the man in line to become chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, the House’s main investigative panel. In interviews with Fox News and other public pronouncements, Comer has alleged that the president’s son is responsible for just about everything.

Why is fentanyl flowing into the United States? Hunter Biden.

Why is President Biden pushing electric vehicles? Hunter Biden.

Why isn’t the president tougher on Russian oligarchs? Hunter Biden.

Why isn’t the administration pinning the pandemic on a Wuhan lab leak and battling China over currency manipulation? Hunter Biden and Hunter Biden.

Why did the United States rejoin the Paris climate accord? Hunter Biden.

Why did the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff reassure the Chinese military in the last chaotic days of the Trump administration? Again, Hunter Biden.

“Congressional Republicans plan to open up five avenues of investigation into Hunter Biden,” the New York Post reported last week, citing Comer’s prospective panel.

The FBI and the Justice Department have undertaken a multiyear investigation into Hunter Biden’s business activities. But Republicans are apparently planning on subjecting Biden père et fils to the Benghazi treatment. In that case, after no fewer than eight congressional investigations, the GOP failed to find wrongdoing by Hillary Clinton related to the terrorist attack in Libya — but they did uncover her private email server.

Comer, who has vowed to be “all over Hunter Biden,” told Fox News on April 28 that “Hunter Biden and Joe Biden’s shady business dealings with Russia and with China” were responsible for drug smuggling. “China’s making so much money off the fentanyl that’s crossing the border. Is the reason Joe Biden has an open border because of his being compromised with China?”

Actually, U.S. authorities seized 5,300 pounds of fentanyl so far this fiscal year and 11,200 pounds last year along the supposedly “open" border — more than double the pace of interdiction under President Donald Trump.

Three weeks earlier, Comer floated another conspiracy theory on Fox News: “At the same time that Joe Biden’s trying to convert everyone in the United States from fossil fuel to electric vehicles, we put China in a stronger competitive advantage over the United States in the battery market because of the rare earth minerals, and Hunter Biden was front and center in that.” In Comer’s telling, the Biden administration supports EVs not to reduce carbon emissions but because Hunter Biden brokered a 2016 deal “between an American company and a Chinese company” over a “Congo mine with cobalt.”

Comer alleged other ways “Hunter’s shady dealings have impacted Joe Biden’s decisionmaking.” For example: “One of the oligarchs in Russia that Hunter Biden received money from” wasn’t among the “oligarchs who were sanctioned by the Biden administration in Russia.” (The Post’s Fact Checker found that the allegation that Biden the younger received funds from the oligarch is based on “flimsiness.”)

Comer also claimed that, because of Hunter Biden, Democrats won’t “investigate the origination of covid-19 in that Wuhan lab” (Biden ordered and made public an intelligence review on the topic) and “don’t want to do anything against China on the manipulation of their currency.” (Perhaps Hunter Biden also caused the Trump administration to remove China’s designation as a currency manipulator in 2020.)

Comer previously proposed that Hunter Biden would have special insight into “energy companies in China or Ukraine” that “spent money lobbying for the Paris climate accords.”

And Comer said the “strange relationship between Hunter Biden and China” is the only thing that could explain why “the administration and the deep state [would] be reaching out to their Chinese counterparts to try to give them warning of any potential military action by the United States.” Never mind that those calls by Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark A. Milley occurred during the Trump presidency.

Now, Comer charges that “the Russian government is attempting to influence American policy in Ukraine by exploiting Hunter Biden’s connection with his father.” His letter was signed by 13 other Republicans — one of 14 such releases in which oversight committee Republicans have mentioned Biden in the past five weeks alone. House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.) also frequently calls out the president’s son and has blessed the idea of probing him.

So, to recap, Hunter Biden controls cobalt in Congo, fentanyl in Mexico, coronavirus in Wuhan and war in Ukraine. It is just a matter of time until Republicans find a Hunter Biden angle in Jeffrey Epstein’s demise and UFOs off the coast of California.

“Where’s Hunter?” went the popular refrain at Trump rallies. Now we know. In the Republican imagination, Hunter is everywhere.