Rep. Scott Perry Says Biden Impeachment Vote Unlikely With Shrinking GOP House Majority

Ryan Morgan
By Ryan Morgan
February 22, 2024Politics
Rep. Scott Perry Says Biden Impeachment Vote Unlikely With Shrinking GOP House Majority
Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) walks through the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 12, 2024. (Kent Nishimura/Getty Images)

Rep. Scott Perry (R-Pa.) raised new doubts that the Republican-controlled House of Representatives would move to an impeachment vote against President Joe Biden.

For months, House Republicans have pursued a variety of leads into allegations that President Biden leveraged his power and access throughout his political career to benefit his family’s private business deals.

Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, on Thursday, Mr. Perry said the evidence so far for impeaching the president “is pretty clear,” adding, “You don’t just make millions of dollars with nothing to sell.” Still, Mr. Perry prepared Republican and conservative voters in attendance at the conference for the likelihood that the investigation would not result in a House impeachment vote.

“I don’t think we are going to get to a point, quite honestly, where we are going to be able to impeach him, especially with the thin margin that we have,” the Pennsylvania Republican said.

The Republican Party began the current session of Congress with 222 seats to 212 for the Democratic minority. Republican retirements over this Congressional term and the decision to oust Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) have shrunk that Republican majority over the course of the term to 219 seats.

Last week, Democrat Tom Suozzi won a special election for Mr. Santos’ seat and is set to join Congress on Feb. 28, bringing Republicans to a 219-213 majority.

The thin margin leaves little room for an impeachment vote to succeed if any Republicans vote against impeaching President Biden.

A December vote to formalize the impeachment inquiry into President Biden passed on a 219-212 party-line vote. Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) voted in favor of the impeachment inquiry despite expressing earlier misgivings about the case for impeaching President Biden.

A Feb. 6 vote to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas failed by a 214-216 margin after four Republicans voted with all Democrats present against the measure. A second impeachment vote was held on Feb. 13, this time with Republicans approving the impeachment articles against Mr. Mayorkas by a 214-213 vote.

Even if an impeachment vote against President Biden succeeds in the House, an impeachment trial faces tougher odds in the Democrat-controlled Senate.

Perry: House Republicans Will Keep Arguing Case Against Biden

Despite his stated doubts about a successful House vote to impeach President Biden, Mr. Perry told the CPAC audience that Republicans could keep the impeachment case alive as a way to convince voters going into the 2024 election.

“We’re going to continue right up until the end of the term to bring this information out and to inform the American people that if Joe Biden wants to run for office again, have him explain this to the people that he wants to vote for him,” he said.

That strategy could reinforce negative public perceptions of President Biden.

A recent poll commissioned by CNN found that 61 percent of polled voters believe President Biden had at least some involvement in his son Hunter Biden’s business dealings in China and Ukraine. That poll found that 42 percent of respondents believed the president’s involvement was illegal, while 18 percent thought it was “unethical, but not illegal,” and one percent believed it was perfectly legitimate. Thirty-eight percent of respondents said they believed President Biden had no involvement in his son’s business dealings.

On the other hand, the recent arrest and indictment of an FBI informant may cast doubt on the ongoing impeachment investigation.

Earlier in their investigation, Republican lawmakers obtained and shared copies of an FBI interview with an informant who alleged the Ukrainian gas company Burisma had hired Hunter Biden to get his father to help protect the Ukrainian company from a variety of problems. This informant further alleged Burisma gave $5 million to each of the Bidens as part of the arrangement. Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice appeared to identify this FBI informant as Alexander Smirnov and charged him with making up the claims against President Biden and his son.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), the ranking member on the House Oversight Committee, told The Epoch Times this week that his Republican colleagues should “fold up the tent to this circus show,” adding, “It’s really over at this point.”

President Biden also personally called for Republicans to end their impeachment inquiry last week after news broke of the charges against Mr. Smirnov.

“It should be dropped. And it’s just been an outrageous effort from the beginning,” the president told reporters on Feb. 16.

Despite pushback from Democrats, Congressional Republicans have continued to call witnesses in their impeachment investigation. President Biden’s brother testified before the House on Wednesday, and Hunter Biden is now scheduled to testify on Feb. 28.

Republican House investigators are also seeking to interview Amos Hochstein, a U.S. State Department official who previously advised then-Vice President Biden on Ukraine-related matters around the time Hunter Biden was involved with Burisma.

ntd newsletter icon
Sign up for NTD Daily
What you need to know, summarized in one email.
Stay informed with accurate news you can trust.
By registering for the newsletter, you agree to the Privacy Policy.