WASHINGTON ― House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer (R-Ky.) lost his cool at a Democratic colleague on Tuesday for questioning his family’s business arrangements.
Rep. Jared Moskowitz (D-Fla.) suggested during a committee hearing that Comer and his brother were involved in the same sort of wire transfers that Comer has cited in corruption accusations against President Joe Biden.
“That is bullshit,” Comer said in response to Moskowitz, using unusually indecorous language from the committee dais.
Moskowitz is “financially illiterate,” Comer added, and he looks like a Smurf.
Comer launched his tirade the same day former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) shoved or hit a fellow House Republican and just hours after Sen. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) threatened to fight a committee witness. It was an unusually tense day at the Capitol.
Comer has said a $200,000 payment from Joe Biden’s brother James in 2018, discovered through a committee subpoena for years of James and Hunter Biden’s bank statements, looks suspicious despite records indicating it was a loan repayment. The subpoenas are part of the Republican impeachment inquiry against Biden.
The Daily Beast reported this week that Kentucky property records indicate the Comers engaged in land swaps related to their family’s farming business, including one transaction involving a “shell company” in which Comer channeled $200,000 to his brother.
“You owe it to the American people to explain why you’ve gone on Fox News and told people that while the president was out of office he had a loan with his brother, and in a way they were evading taxes,” Moskowitz said. “It has come out in the public that you also do business with your brother with potential loans.”
Comer, who pays close attention to any media that mentions his name, immediately recalled that Moskowitz and Rep. Dan Goldman (D-N.Y.) had tweeted the Daily Beast story. He said he had not loaned his brother money, and he was mad.
“The White House tried to get CNN to write that story. They went around and investigated all this bullshit that [White House spokesman] Ian Sams is trying to tell people ― that only dumb, financially illiterate people pick up on,” Comer said. “You’re so financially illiterate that you think because something says LLC, it’s a shell company.”
Comer has said that nearly two-dozen Limited Liability Companies linked to Hunter Biden are “shell companies” with no legitimate purpose other than funneling money to the Biden family, though there is evidence several of the firms were involved in legitimate business activities. LLCs are business entities registered with state governments.
Comer has been increasingly testy about the impeachment inquiry, criticizing reporters for their skeptical descriptions of his material, such as records suggesting James Biden had merely repaid a loan from his brother. “Loan, my ass,” Comer told HuffPost earlier this month.
As Moskowitz protested, Comer said he looked like a diminutive cartoon character.
“You look like Smurf here, going around and all this stuff,” Comer said. “You continue to spew disinformation.”
Moskowitz later suggested on social media that Comer had acted like a Smurf villain.
“Gargamel was very angry today,” he said.