On President Biden’s first day in office, then-White House press secretary Jen Psaki vowed that the administration would “bring transparency and truth back to government.”
What a useless promise. The Biden administration has turned out to be one of the most opaque, secretive and nontransparent in decades, creating the overt appearance of impropriety.
After Republicans won control the House of Representatives and promised to investigate Mr. Biden’s son Hunter’s overseas business dealings, among others, the White House told incoming House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer and House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan to pound sand.
While in the minority, the White House claimed it couldn’t cooperate with House Republicans because they simply weren’t in the majority. When they won, the top lawyer for the president notified both men in letters that all oversight demands made in the last Congress would have to be renewed — once Messrs. Comer and Jordan were sworn in.
Now that the 118th Congress is up and running, the Biden administration has continued its stonewalling. Mr. Comer sent a request to the Treasury Department to provide information on Biden family financial transactions that may have been marked suspicious, with a deadline for responses last week.
On Jan. 25, the Treasury Department responded, saying it must first determine if Mr. Comer’s request is consistent with “longstanding Executive Branch interests.” It asked Mr. Comer to “specify in writing [his] purpose in seeking to obtain the requested information and the use [he] intends to make of it” in a letter sent to the congressman.
“This coordinated effort by the Biden administration to hide information about President Biden and his family’s shady business schemes is alarming and raises many questions,” Mr. Comer said in a statement after Treasury’s letter was released. “We will continue to press for access to suspicious activity reports generated for the Biden family and their associates and will use the power of the gavel to get them if needed.”
The power of the gavel will be needed.
It took the Biden administration 68 days — on Jan. 10, after the midterm elections — to disclose to the American public that classified information was found at Mr. Biden’s think tank on Nov. 2.
White House officials assured us they had no idea the materials were there and were working with the National Archives in a transparent matter.
But in reality, the Biden administration wasn’t forthcoming.
It misled the people to believe the Nov. 2 incident was a one-off occurrence, which it was not.
On Jan. 12, the president acknowledged that more classified documents has been found in his garage at his Wilmington, Delaware home — near his prized classic Corvette — but told the nation not to worry about sensitive state secrets being compromised or exposed because his garage was locked.
The revelation spurred the Department of Justice to assign a special counsel to the matter. When asked in a press conference the same day if the search for classified materials was over, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre stated multiple times that the search “was completed.”
But it wasn’t.
Eight days later, DOJ searched Mr. Biden’s home and found even more classified documents.
Republicans, wanting to know who may have had potential access to these documents, demanded that the White House produce visitor logs to Mr. Biden’s home, a critical gap in information since the president has thus far spent 6½ months of his two years in office at his home or beach house.
But again, the White House told the GOP to pound sand, saying it doesn’t keep visitors log for his personal residences, so they were out of luck.
What’s in these documents? The White House isn’t telling us, and the Biden administration is, again, stonewalling members of Congress from gaining access to them — prompting outrage from both Republicans and Democrats.
Because special counsels were appointed in both Mr. Biden’s and former President Donald Trump’s cases, the intelligence community is arguing that it doesn’t want to brief Congress on the matter so as not to interfere with their ongoing investigations.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner, a Democrat, said last week that this argument “is not going to stand,” as Congress needs to access what, if any, threat to national security these documents contain and the potential need to change laws.
After all, when Mr. Trump was being investigated for Russian collusion by a special counsel, the Senate Intelligence Committee held a parallel investigation, obtaining access to the same material as DOJ.
It’s clear the Biden administration is going out of its way not to cooperate with congressional oversight.
It’s time for Congress to use all the resources it has — both with subpoenas and the power of the purse — to finally resolve the rumors of a massive pay-to-play scheme orchestrated by the Biden family during Mr. Biden’s 50 years as a public servant.