Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellRand Paul looms as wild card in surveillance fight Biden must first unite the party to defeat Trump House makes telework plans amid coronavirus outbreak MORE (R-Ky.) is signaling potential support for a probe into former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden racks up union endorsements ahead of crucial primaries Sanders releases reproductive health-care plan Biden campaign unveils biggest ad purchase of 2020 cycle MORE‘s son Hunter Biden and Ukrainian gas company Burisma Holdings.
But McConnell said that he doesn’t “tell my committee chairman what to investigate” and defended Johnson, who chairs the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
“Senator Johnson’s very responsible, not inclined to be overly partisan on everything that comes along. He’s been trying, as he indicated, to kind of quietly look at this for some time before Biden’s comeback … which made him more likely the nominee,” McConnell said.
“If you become the front-runner you come under a lot of scrutiny, from the press, from both sides. Joe has been around a long time, he knows that this sort of thing will be looked at when you become the likely nominee of your party,” McConnell added.
He was previously asked after the end of the impeachment trial if Republicans were now going to target the Bidens, but largely sidestepped taking a position.
In addition to Hunter Biden’s work on the board of Burisma, Johnson and Grassley have a wide-ranging probe that is looking at potential wrongdoing during the Obama administration.
The former vice president has denied wrongdoing, and there is no evidence that either of the Bidens engaged in any criminal wrongdoing. Fact-checkers have also debunked claims that Biden was working with his son’s interest in mind.