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House GOP presses WH over drafts of 2015 Biden speech in Ukraine

The Republicans set a deadline of Feb. 7 for the White House to authorize NARA to release the speech drafts or to assert privilege over the materials, threatening a subpoena for non-compliance.

Published: January 31, 2024 4:41pm

A group of House Republicans on Wednesday wrote demanding that the White House permit the National Archives to provide them with all drafts of then-Vice President Joe Biden's 2015 speech to the Ukrainian Rada.

During the speech, Biden urged the government to fire then-Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin, who was investigating the energy company Burisma at the time. An unclassified FBI source document made public last year included allegations that the firm hired now-first son Hunter Biden to secure access to his father and stifle Shokin's probe. 

Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer, Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Jason Smith, in writing to White House Counsel Edward Siskel, pointed to reports suggesting that Biden unilaterally changed U.S. policy to call for Shokin's ouster, which he allegedly did to help Hunter.

Republicans initially requested the documents in August of last year, that the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), which has not provided them.

"For more than five months the White House has declined to authorize the production of these draft speeches to the Oversight Committee or to assert a valid privilege over them," they wrote. "Such a lengthy delay in processing a discrete and limited category of documents is unacceptable and appears to represent an attempt to obstruct the Committees’ legitimate investigation. These dilatory tactics must cease, and the White House must permit NARA to release these documents forthwith."

The Republicans set a deadline of Feb. 7 for the White House to authorize NARA to release the speech drafts or to assert privilege over the materials, threatening a subpoena for non-compliance.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter.

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