In order for Kevin McCarthy to win his position as Speaker of the House after 15 ballots, McCarthy had to make a deal with the devil—he had to agree to ridiculous concessions that would give the most radical members of the House the power to force his hand on key issues. McCarthy was narrowly able to avert a government shutdown earlier this year, but now the GOP’s Caucus of Crazies have demanded that McCarthy launch a politically disastrous attempt to impeach President Joe Biden. McCarthy, with his Speaker’s chair turned into a Siege Perilous, has acquiesced to the insane demands of the most radical members of his caucus.
The claim is that President Biden has fostered a “culture of corruption.” The problem with this claim is that there is precisely zero evidence of it. Yes, his son Hunter Biden was clearly trading on his family name. However, that may be unethical, but it is absolutely not illegal. If you think that Jared Kushner got his $2 billion payout from the Saudi Royal Family on the basis of his business acumen, I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. There is simply zero evidence that Joe Biden did anything wrong other than have a son with some very deep personal problems. The claims that President Biden somehow received a “bribe” or that he interfered in Ukraine on behalf of Burisma are both completely false. There is no evidence of either, as a GOP probe already determined. But the lack of evidence has not prevented the GOP from desperately trying to find a pony in that giant pile of right-wing horseshit.
Ultimately, a clearly politically-motivated impeachment is a gift to President Biden. The impeachment investigation is likely to go nowhere. It it is not at all clear that McCarthy would have enough votes in the House to actually impeach Biden. Any impeachment would be DOA in the Senate. Instead, impeachment will demonstrate to independent and swing voters that the GOP is just not a serious party. Impeachment is a distraction, a base play for a base that is already shrinking. A serious GOP would be thinking of ways to win back the suburban voters that it lost during the Trump years. Issues like crime and inflation may not be quite as powerful as they were when the GOP’s “red wave” turned into a ripple, but at least they are real issues. Trying to paint Joe Biden as some kind of nefarious crime lord is just ridiculous. Voters did not care about Hunter Biden in 2020, and they’re not going to care in 2024.
Kevin McCarthy made a deal with the devil to become Speaker of the House, Not giving the radicals like Marjorie Taylor Green and Matt Gaetz the impeachment they demand mean losing his position as Speaker. But giving them what they want might well do the same. There are enough GOP candidates that won districts that were Biden leaning that will be made incredibly vulnerable by this quixotic impeachment campaign to swing the House. The problem with deals with the devil is that the devil always wants his due. Kevin McCarthy is finding that out the hard way.