Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA) pressed Garland on that question during a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
.@RepMikeJohnson: "Have you had personal contact with anyone at FBI headquarters about the Hunter Biden investigation?"
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) September 20, 2023
“Have you had personal contact with anyone at FBI headquarters about the Hunter Biden investigation?” Johnson asked.
“I don’t recollect the answer to that question but the FBI works for the Justice Department — ,” Garland said in reply.
“I’m sorry,” Johnson interjected. “You don’t recollect whether you talked to anyone at FBI headquarters about an investigation into the president’s son?”
Garland responded, “I don’t believe that I did.”
The exchange took place early in the hearing. The X account for the Judiciary GOP responded to the exchange with a post that asked, “What are they hiding?”
Garland also insisted that he “kept” his promise to not interfere in the investigation and made clear that U.S. Attorney David Weiss, who is leading the Hunter Biden inquiry, had the authority to bring cases that he believed to be appropriate.
But Garland refused to budge on the question of whether he had any contacts with Weiss.
.@RepMikeJohnson: "Under oath…your testimony is – you have not had any discussions with Mr. Weiss about this matter?"
GARLAND: "I do not intend to discuss internal Justice Department deliberations, whether or not I had them."
JOHNSON: "So, your testimony today is you're not… pic.twitter.com/Rjmp0zl74U
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) September 20, 2023
“Under oath … your testimony is — you have not had any discussions with Mr. Weiss about this matter?” Johnson asked.
“Under oath, my testimony today is that I promise the Senate I would not intrude in his investigation. I do not intend to discuss internal Justice Department deliberations, whether or not I had them,” Garland said.
After a plea deal fell apart, Garland granted Weiss special counsel status last month, giving the U.S. attorney broader authority to bring charges outside of his own district. Hunter Biden has since been charged on federal gun charges and his lawyer says he plans to plead not guilty. The first son may also soon face an indictment on tax evasion charges.
Though whistleblowers have claimed that officials slow-walked the inquiry in a way that may have precluded more serious charges in the years-long probe, Garland testified on Wednesday that there was nothing “cumbersome” about the process Weiss had to go through.
Garland also said he expects Weiss to deliver a report at the end of his investigation that will explain decisions when it comes to prosecutions.