WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: Bombshell Reporting Exposes James Comer’s Own Shady Business Deals Amid Impeachment Sham
December 15, 2023
Yesterday’s bombshell reporting from the Associated Press exposed James Comer engaged in the exact kind of shady business practices he falsely accuses President Biden of – owning a shell company alongside convicted criminals in a shady attempt to disguise financial holdings.
Here’s what they’re saying about James Comer’s hypocrisy getting put on full display:
Associated Press: Interviews and records reviewed by The Associated Press provide new insights into the financial deal, which risks undercutting the force of some of Comer’s central arguments in his impeachment inquiry of President Joe Biden. For months, the chairman of the House Oversight committee and his Republican colleagues have been pounding Biden for how his relatives traded on their famous name to secure business deals.
But as Comer works to “deliver the transparency and accountability that the American people demand” through the GOP’s investigation, his own finances and relationships have begun to draw notice, too, including his ties to prominent local figures who have complicated pasts not all that dissimilar to some of those caught up in his Biden probe.
After this story first published Thursday, Comer responded during an appearance on FOX News, stating that Farm Team Properties “has five different assets and lots of revenue.” He didn’t reveal what those other assets may be. He also falsely claimed that the donor, Darren Cleary, “wasn’t a campaign contributor” at the time the property was purchased. Cleary and his family have donated to Comer’s political campaigns since at least 2010, records show.
Washington Post: In that August assessment, we also considered this issue of “shell companies,” noting that the term has a gauzy definition. But most of the corporate entities formed by Hunter Biden and his partners did have stated purposes. One, for example, was the aforementioned Biden law firm.
On Thursday morning, the Associated Press reported that Comer himself used a “shell company” for real estate purposes — something that some of the “shell companies” involved in his investigation also did. (Bartiromo asked him about it; Comer claimed that it was an example of the reporter’s “financial illiteracy.”)
But here’s James Comer, four months later, suggesting not only that Hunter Biden did receive this money, but that it somehow influenced his father’s policy decisions. Because, at the end of the day, that’s what he and his colleagues want to convey. No evidence about Joe Biden’s unacceptable actions but, instead, that Joe Biden is somehow linked to a seedy universe of criminality — a link and a universe they’re still struggling to manifest.
MSNBC: A Washington Post analysis from last month explained that many of these Biden family shell companies “are simply corporate entities like one that serves as the structure for Hunter Biden’s law firm and another that’s a consulting company he ran.” The newspaper examined each of these business entities and found that “they were created because this is how business structures often work.
But for a variety of leading Republicans, “shell company” is synonymous with “shady,” and no GOP official has done more to advance this narrative than House Oversight Committee Chairman James Comer.
The Kentucky Republican has obsessively told the public about Biden shell companies, at one point telling Fox Business, ‘Nobody creates shell companies.’
In hindsight, perhaps Comer shouldn’t have used the word ‘nobody.’
The New Republic: The man leading the Biden impeachment inquiry has apparently engaged in nearly identical behavior that he has hounded the president over.
But a series of interviews and records searches conducted by the AP showed that the Kentucky Republican did something remarkably similar, transferring a six-acre parcel of land co-owned with one of his major campaign donors, Darren Cleary, to a shell company he created in 2017 with his wife.
The property has grown in value since its original purchase, jumping from a valuation of between $50,000 and $100,000 at the time of purchase to $500,001 and $1 million, according to Comer’s financial statements obtained by the outlet. That flies in the face of not only Comer’s self-purported, squeaky-clean reputation but also House rules, which require members of Congress to disclose all assets held by companies worth more than $1,000.
Newsweek: Mary Trump, Donald Trump’s estranged niece and critic, said the reports were “unbelievable” and called Comer “a hypocrite.”
She added: “James Comer, who is pushing the sham Biden impeachment, allegedly made the same kind of business deal he’s accusing Hunter Biden of having made.”
Meanwhile, responding to his impeachment inquiry, Biden called Republican impeachment plans “baseless.”
In a statement from the White House, he said: “Instead of doing their job on the urgent work that needs to be done, they are choosing to waste time on this baseless political stunt that even Republicans in Congress admit is not supported by facts.”
“There is a lot of work to be done,” he added. “But after wasting weeks trying to find a new Speaker of the House and having to expel their own members, Republicans in Congress are leaving for a month without doing anything to address these pressing challenges.”
MSNBC: Even Fox News host Peter Doocy has thrown cold water on the charade, saying Republicans haven’t shown where Biden has committed any illegal acts. (Note: This is why Kentucky Rep. James Comer — who’s been mocked repeatedly for his leadership of the baseless push — recently said he’s no longer going to appear on Fox.)
Mediaite: While the article doesn’t accuse Comer outright of hiding assets in the shell company, it does note that ‘After this story first published Thursday, Comer responded during an appearance on FOX News, stating that Farm Team Properties ‘has five different assets and lots of revenue.’ He didn’t reveal what those other assets may be. He also falsely claimed that the donor, Darren Cleary, ‘wasn’t a campaign contributor’ at the time the property was purchased. Cleary and his family have donated to Comer’s political campaigns since at least 2010, records show.
Jessica Tarlov on Fox News: “He has been going on for months about the fact that people who are innocent of these things don’t have shell companies. But guess what? James Comer does.”
Alyssa Farah Griffin on ABC: “I have not seen one shred of evidence that it’s tied to Joe Biden. That’s what it comes down to. … By the way, someone who’s no Joe Biden fan, Steve Doocey on Fox News has been hammering James Comer, ‘give me one thing, one piece of evidence,’ otherwise it’s a waste of taxpayer dollars.”
Rep. Elissa Slotkin on MSNBC: “First of all, it’s sort of sloppy, right? If you’re going to be attacking someone and then you find that you yourself, you are doing the same thing, clean your story up here. But I think it’s just part and parcel of the bigger story, which is, this is meant to distract. This is meant to talk about Biden and legal issues instead of Trump and legal issues and the Republicans are saying that. You have people like Senator Grassley saying, ‘I’m not seeing the facts,’ but then you have others like Troy Nehls saying, ‘Look, this is to get Donald Trump back, baby! Like this is the reason we’re doing this.’ So we need to believe them when they say that.”
Seung Min Kim, Associated Press: James Comer, the Republican leading the probe of Hunter Biden, has his own shell company and complicated friends (from @AP)
Rep. Eric Swalwell: Well, well, well. We should have known this is what’s really been going on. After making so many false claims against President Biden, James Comer is the one with the shady finances. @AP breaks down his shell companies.
The New Republic: James Comer’s use of a shell company flies in the face of not only his self-purported squeaky clean reputation, but also House rules, which require members of Congress to disclose all assets held by companies worth more than $1,000.
Arthur Delaney, HuffPost: New AP investigation of James Comer’s shell company finds it similar to the ones Comer says Hunter Biden used for crimes and corruption
Kyle Griffin, MSNBC: The Republican leading the probe of Hunter Biden has his own shell company and complicated friends:
Interviews and records reviewed by The Associated Press provide new insights into his financial deals, which risks undercutting the force of James Comer’s central arguments in his impeachment inquiry of President Biden.
As Comer works to “deliver the transparency and accountability that the American people demand” through the GOP’s investigation, his own finances and relationships have begun to draw notice, too, including his ties to prominent local figures who have complicated pasts not all that dissimilar to some of those caught up in his Biden probe.
Shanlon Wu: What’s another word for hypocrite? Rep. James Comer self-righteously claiming Hunter Biden was involved in shady business dealing with shady people even as Comer uses a shell company to hide assets & continues his business relationships with those convicted for evading taxes.
Oh, and here’s how Comer’s former girlfriend describes him: “the former girlfriend, Marilyn Thomas, who wrote a letter to the Louisville Courier-Journal in which she asserted that Comer had hit her and that their relationship had been “toxic.” She also told the newspaper that Comer became “enraged” in 1991 after he learned she had used his name on a form she submitted before receiving an abortion at a Louisville clinic.” Kudos to @AP & @thedailybeast (see next post in thread) for the reporting on this story