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Rep. Mooney talks with The Dominion Post about impeachment, spending, dysfunction and more

MORGANTOWN – Rep. Alex Mooney talked with The Dominion Post in White Hall Monday during a visit to sites in Marion, Monongalia and Harrison counties.

We talked about House impeachment discussions, his bill to help secure the southern border and Congressional dysfunction, among other topics.

House Republicans are preparing for a Wednesday vote to pursue an impeachment inquiry against President Joe Biden (the inquiry is not impeachment itself but the hearings and investigation preceding a possible impeachment vote).

“I’m all for the inquiry,” Mooney said. “There’s a lot of evidence out there. I think the American public should have total exposure to it.”

He admits that the inquiry is “an unfortunate result of what’s happened and is happening to former President Trump. “I find, often-case, people that point fingers are the ones guilty of what they’re pointing fingers about.”

The inquiry revolves around allegations of Biden corruptly benefiting from the corrupt business dealings of his son, Hunter Biden, who in turn used his connections to his father to benefit himself and Joe Biden. Mooney said Hunter refused so far to appear before the Judiciary Committee and a formal impeachment vote would take away his excuses for not appearing.

Mooney said that with the ouster of Rep. George Santos and one GOP Congressman opposing the inquiry, and the pending resignation of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy, the GOP majority is slimmer, and they all have to be for an inquiry to pass it. He has a sense the GOP members will support the inquiry, but an impeachment is not certain.

Spending bills

Mooney said he receives regular media questions and criticism for not voting for stop-gap spending measures.

“I keep telling them, because every time we do it, it doesn’t solve the problem. It makes the problem worse. And we do it again and again.”

During the last two weeks, the House has not voted on any of the 12 spending bills needed to keep the government running. “Exactly what I said would happen is happening.” They will come back in January without any bills passed. “It’s hard to help my constituents when you don’t control the power of the purse anymore.”

As an example, he cited a complaint by a local company that Biden EPA rules require shutting down an entire construction project is an endangered species if found on a site. Under the Trump EPA, just the portion of the project with the species had to be isolated.

If they took up the spending bill dealing with the EPA, he said, they could defund that part of the EPA. “It’s hard to protect the coal industry, the construction industry in West Virginia if we don’t pass our spending bills. We just give a trillion dollars to Joe Biden to do whatever he wants.”

Congressional discord

The House GOP is still divided under new Speaker Mike Johnson, Mooney said.

He expanded on that, noting that the U.S. has the world’s best form of government. “But it is a difficult business. And voters have in fact given us divided government.” We have a Democrat president and Senate, and a Republican House. They disagree on many things.

“That’s the process. The House should not just recede to the Senate position on these things.”

And Democrats are linking passage of the defense spending bill, which they all support, to passage of environmental spending, which is wrong. “To me that’s a dysfunctionally run government and Republicans should not give into that.”

Mooney’s bill

Mooney is among the many of both parties interested in securing the southern border.

He talked about his bill, HR 3190, that lacks one of the usual acronyms, but would prohibit any foreign aid going to Mexico “until the President submits to Congress a written certification that Mexico is cooperating with the United States to reduce the flow of fentanyl across the southern border of the United States.”

Mooney said Mexican President Obrador has lied about illegal fentanyl flowing from China through Mexico and across the border into the U.S. They need to prove they are actually trying to cut the flow.

“Let’s at least do that,” he said. “He needs to work with us on that issue, not take advantage of the situation at the open border.

The bill is with the Foreign Affairs Committee. Reps. Elijah Crane, R-Ariz., and Byron Donalds, R-FLa., are co-sponsors.

Email: dbeard@dominionpost.com