By Jason Smith, member of Congress
When I was elected by my Republican colleagues to serve as Chairman of the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, I promised the American people the committee would do something it hadn’t previously been known for: it would become known for conducting oversight. From just press reports, we knew of abusive IRS practices that needed to be looked at: taxpayer information that had been leaked, political opponents appeared to be targeted, and negligent behavior left other taxpayers at risk. So, one of my first actions as chair was to establish a whistleblower hotline that encouraged any IRS employee who had seen something suspicious to be able to report it to our committee for investigation in a safe and secure way. But we had no idea the extent of alleged corruption and political interference occurring.
As part of our oversight, we were contacted by an IRS whistleblower who indicated they had information about an investigation into a high-profile individual and how that investigation had been the subject of political interference. When the whistleblower came to me, he didn’t even have the authority to discuss the wrongdoing he knew with his own attorneys, because disclosing protected taxpayer information is against the law. So – using the powers entrusted to me – I granted the whistleblower the authority to disclose what he knew. And he gave our committee testimony about the investigation into the president’s son, Hunter Biden, and how IRS employees and Department of Justice officials were allegedly stymied in their efforts to charge him with tax crimes involving his business dealings.
These were obviously explosive charges, and as we investigated, we were soon contacted by a second whistleblower, who confirmed the original whistleblower’s version of events. Amazingly, soon after these whistleblowers shared their stories with us, the Department of Justice announced a plea agreement with Hunter Biden that would prevent him from seeing jail time, despite allegedly committing multiple felony tax crimes that would have landed any other American behind bars.
Once the testimony of the two whistleblowers was out in the open, it quickly shook the political establishment to its core. Not only did the whistleblowers allege political interference in prosecuting Mr. Biden, but they also showed evidence that President Biden himself had not been forthcoming with the American people about his knowledge and potential involvement in Hunter’s business dealings.
The law shouldn’t apply differently just because your last name is Biden. This week, I made sure the court evaluating Hunter’s plea agreement was made aware of the substantial allegations we uncovered, which clearly showed that he was receiving a sweetheart deal.
Ultimately the judge reviewing the agreement refused to accept the terms of the deal for Hunter, and he left the court pleading not guilty to the underlying charges he faces. I am not afraid of the challenges this case will bring – in fact, if anything I am energized by the chance to bring real accountability to the president and his family for the political cronyism on full display. And I can promise southern Missourians one thing: my fight is only getting started.