GOP senators press State Department for Hunter Biden, Burisma records

GOP senators press State Department for Hunter Biden, Burisma records
© Aaron Schwartz

Two GOP Senate chairmen are asking for the State Department to hand over any documents related to Hunter Biden and a Ukraine energy company.

Sens. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonSecond GOP senator to quarantine after exposure to coronavirus GOP-led panel to hear from former official who said Burisma was not a factor in US policy The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Trump contradicts CDC director on vaccine, masks MORE (R-Wis.) and Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleySenate Republicans signal openness to working with Biden Senators offer disaster tax relief bill Trump spikes political football with return of Big Ten season MORE (R-Iowa) — the chairmen of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and Finance Committees, respectively — sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoHillicon Valley: FBI chief says Russia is trying to interfere in election to undermine Biden | Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Pence lauds Harris as 'experienced debater'; Trump, Biden diverge over debate prep MORE seeking details on former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenCast of 'Parks and Rec' reunite for virtual town hall to address Wisconsin voters Biden says Trump should step down over coronavirus response Biden tells CNN town hall that he has benefited from white privilege MORE's son, who has emerged as a top target for Republicans.

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The GOP senators wrote that they wanted to "better understand what actions, if any, the Obama administration took to ensure that policy decisions relating to Ukraine and Burisma were not improperly influenced by the employment and financial interests of family members."

The two lawmakers also want to know if the State Department requested that the Office of Legal Advisor or the department's inspector general reviewed "potential concerns and conflicts of interest related to Hunter Biden’s work for Burisma while Vice President Biden reportedly acted as the United States’ top official in Ukraine? If not, why not?"  

The letter, which was publicly released on Thursday, comes as Trump and his allies have latched onto Biden’s connection to Ukraine, and the former vice president seeks the Democratic nomination to challenge Trump in 2020.

As part of the Grassley-Johnson request, the pair is asking for any State Department records involving Hunter Biden and Burisma Holdings, as well as any documentation tied to Biden's business partners Devon Archer and Christopher Heinz.

They also appear to be zeroing in on potential contact between Biden and his associates and the Obama State Department. They want to know if Hunter Biden met with then-Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken in 2015 for "advice" and if a March 2016 meeting between Archer and then-Secretary of State John KerryJohn Forbes KerryThe Memo: Warning signs flash for Trump on debates Divided country, divided church TV ads favored Biden 2-1 in past month MORE took place.

Hunter Biden worked on the board of a natural gas company owned by a Ukrainian oligarch while his father served as vice president. Joe Biden pushed in 2016 for the dismissal of a Ukrainian prosecutor who had been accused of overlooking corruption in his own office, threatening to withhold money if the prosecutor was not fired.

There’s no indication Joe Biden was acting with his son’s interests in mind and the former vice president has denied doing so. But Trump and his allies, including his personal lawyer Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiGrand jury adds additional counts against Giuliani associates Lev Parnas and and Igor Fruman Juan Williams: Breaking down the debates Giuliani criticizes NYC leadership: 'They're killing this city' MORE, have pushed for an investigation into the Bidens in Ukraine and decried the former vice president as “corrupt.”