House Speaker Mike Johnson took time away from being a homophobe to hold a press conference on Wednesday. He spent most of the time doing what Republican leaders usually do in front of a press corps: equivocate, change the subject, and spew a few empty talking points. In a video posted by reporter Aaron Rupar, Johnson is asked a pretty easy-to-answer question by a reporter.
Of course, the question gets considerably more difficult to answer when the logic of your position is as deplorable as the current Republican speaker’s.
Here’s what Johnson was asked:
The official act that was corrupt that Republicans are alleging today was that when he was vice president, Joe Biden pushed for the firing of a Ukrainian prosecutor—and this was the subject of the impeachment of Donald Trump—and you had a lot of State Department officials who came in and said, “This wasn't Joe Biden's policy. This was our policy. He didn't do this to benefit his son. He did this because we wanted him to do it.”
So did they all commit perjury, or are you going to bring them back for more interviews? Why are Republicans just ignoring all that testimony.
Johnson’s response is to change the subject. “Look, no one's ignoring testimony,” he said. “Let me tell you the top four pieces of evidence with regard to Biden, if I just give a bulletpoints here. From 2014 to 2019, Biden family members and their affiliated companies received over $15 million from foreign companies and foreign nationals.”
That’s $15 million over five years to anyone connected to Biden, got it! It isn’t great form to play whataboutism, but in this case, let’s remember that during the four years of Donald Trump’s disastrous administration, his daughter and son-in-law reportedly made more than half a billion dollars in “outside” income. Jared Kushner alone received more than $2 billion from Saudi nationals for a business where operations were considered “unsatisfactory.”
Johnson is out of his depth. In his defense, the entire Republican Party is drowning in a swamp of MAGA extremism and anti-democratic authoritarianism.