Newly released documents by House Republicans shed light on the frustration experienced by Internal Revenue Service (IRS) agents investigating Hunter Biden whenever President Joe Biden’s name came up in the criminal probe. However, the documents also indicate that senior Justice Department prosecutors believed there were legitimate reasons to steer away from investigating the elder Biden. The 700 pages of internal government documents, released after a party-line vote by the House Ways and Means Committee, include emails, internal IRS reports, transcripts of witness interviews, and handwritten notes. The materials were obtained from IRS whistleblowers Gary Shapley and Joe Ziegler, who hoped to support their claims of political interference in the Hunter Biden criminal investigation.
While some of the examples referenced in the documents occurred during the Trump administration, Republicans argue that the alleged roadblocks demonstrate the legitimacy of their congressional investigations. However, Democrats argue that their GOP colleagues have not found any direct evidence of Joe Biden’s wrongdoing. The documents released on Wednesday include an email from August 2020, where a deputy for prosecutor David Weiss, who is overseeing the Hunter Biden probe, instructed colleagues to remove Joe Biden’s name from a draft search warrant. The warrant was related to Blue Star Strategies, a lobbying firm representing the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings, on whose board Hunter Biden served.
The released documents also reveal an internal IRS report from May 2021, in which officials complain about obstruction from Weiss’ deputy, who allegedly refused to allow investigations into potential campaign finance violations. The report does not identify the candidate or party involved in the alleged violations. It remains unclear who wrote the report. Weiss has indicated that he is considering indicting Hunter Biden on federal tax charges and has already charged him with three gun felonies. The documents released by House Republicans further fuel allegations that federal investigators protected Joe Biden and his family, but Democrats argue that the materials are selectively chosen and only present one side of the story.