But as I’ve pointed out before, if investigating influence peddling is the goal of this committee, how can they not also investigate Ivanka Trump’s China trademarks, which may have actually led to a change in U.S. policy, or Trump hotels, or Jared Kushner’s deals with the Saudis? I’m not saying that they should, but how can you do one without the other?
Well, Comer is now almost admitting that it’s just political. On Tuesday, The New York Times published a profile on the Kentucky GOP congressman and reported on the politics surrounding his investigation into what he calls “Biden family influence peddling.”
The article highlights how Comer abandoned the previous House investigation into whether former President Trump improperly profited from his presidency, and how he also dropped a separate inquiry into the business dealings of Jared Kushner, who received a $2 billion investment from a Saudi wealth fund six months after leaving office.
When he was asked about this, the Times reported, “Mr. Comer indicated he had no interest in the former president’s finances. While it did not rule out looking at Mr. Kushner’s business dealings, at some point, when the reporter suggested it might be politically unsustainable for him to investigate Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, he took a long pause and then replied, ‘I don’t disagree with what you said.’”
At the heart of an investigation into Hunter Biden and his dad is the alleged entanglements with foreign governments and more to the point, did those relationships lead Joe Biden to do anything different? Did Joe Biden change his positions or U.S. policy to help Hunter or himself financially? That’s the reason, in theory, that you’d be investigating Hunter Biden, yes? Well, here’s how Comer recently explained its importance.
“I think that we’re going to be able to trace the money back to the sources, the sources in China, the sources in Ukraine and the sources in Russia, and hopefully, we can get an answer for what did the Biden family do to receive this much money,” Comer said.
But if that’s the purpose, there’s actually more evidence today of influence peddling when it comes to very lucrative deals with foreign entities that benefited Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump. Specifically, the Chinese government seems to have fast-tracked trademarks Ivanka applied for after Trump took office. She applied for about 17 of them and received them quickly in 2017.
On May 7, 2018, China announced it approved five more of Ivanka Trump’s trademark applications. And six days later, Trump reversed the policy imposing sanctions on a major Chinese telecommunications and smartphone maker called ZTE for doing business with Iran and North Korea, saying he wanted to save jobs at the Chinese company.
Then, eight days later, May 21, China awards Ivanka Trump two more trademarks. The policy reversal was also within days of the Chinese government agreeing to provide $500 million in loans to an Indonesian theme park with which the Trump Organization was involved.
Now, does all of that need to be investigated? Well, no. Only if you think it’s critical to investigate the Biden’s possible influence.
Then there’s Ivanka’s husband — six months after leaving the White House, Jared Kushner secured that $2 billion investment from a fund led by the Saudi crown prince, a close ally during the Trump administration, and it was an investment that an advisory panel at the fund recommended against providing, but they were overruled by the Saudi leader.
And what about Trump Hotel businesses that were being managed by his sons Eric and Don Jr. while he was in office? The Trump Hotel in D.C. consistently hosted foreign dignitaries during their diplomatic visits while Trump was in office, raising questions about currying favor or, you know, influence peddling.
Look, I am not saying those things need to be investigated. I’m not. But again, if you’re going to investigate Biden family influence, how can you ignore the Trump family?
It seems Comer recognized the need to do both even in January when confronted about this seeming inconsistency when he was on CNN.
“The influence peddling with respect to the Trump administration will be a part of our overall investigation because both Democrats and Republicans have complained about this with the previous two administrations,” Comer said.
But now he’s coming clean, and he’s admitting there’s no investigation of Trump or Kushner coming, which can only lead to the conclusion that this isn’t really about rooting out and or exposing influence peddling at the highest levels.
Comer deserves credit for his candor. It’s rare that someone in his position will admit that an investigation is politically driven. And now, it’s time for the rest of us to stop pretending, as well.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and not of NewsNation.