House Oversight Chairman James Comer (R-KY) casually suggested to Fox News on Friday that the suspected Chinese spy balloon floating over the United States could contain “bioweapons” from “Wuhan,” invoking the “lab leak theory” that’s been embraced by Republicans.
After a Chinese surveillance balloon was spotted over the northern U.S. this week, Republicans have lashed out at President Joe Biden over his perceived “weakness” in his administration’s policy towards China. Calling for the president to “shoot down” the craft, some in the GOP called the president “Beijing Biden” while claiming this is further proof that “Communist China” doesn’t “fear or respect” Biden.
While the Pentagon has balked over conservative demands to take down the ballon, noting that falling debris could injure or kill civilians, the Biden administration has postponed Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s upcoming trip to China. China, meanwhile, has insisted the suspected spycraft is really just a “civilian airship” that “deviated far from its planned course.”
Amid the Republican handwringing over the Chinese balloon, Comer appeared on Fox News’ The Faulkner Focus to react. And he immediately jumped into conspiratorial waters.
“I have concern this will be another example of the Biden administration’s weakness on the national scale,” he declared. “You look at what happened in Afghanistan. That hurt the reputation of America’s military strength. That hurt the reputation of our commander-in-chief. And now we have China clearly playing games with the United States.”
After saying the balloon “never should have been allowed” to cross over into the U.S., the Kentucky lawmaker then fear-mongered that the craft could be loaded down with weaponized viruses. “My concern is that the federal government doesn't know what's in that balloon,” he asserted. “Is that bioweapons in that balloon? Did that balloon take off from Wuhan?”
Comer, of course, was referencing the theory that COVID-19 was engineered by Chinese virologists at a Wuhan laboratory, possibly with the help and funding of American scientists. Comer, who has promised investigations into the origins of COVID-19, has also alleged that former Biden chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci “was warned early on that the virus appeared manmade” but instead “attempted to cover it up.”
The House Oversight chief, who has also vowed to hold countless hearings on Hunter Biden’s business dealings and “Laptop from Hell,” then seemingly accused the president of working with China when it came to his current classified documents scandal.
“This is very concerning,” Comer breathlessly exclaimed. “Unless China is working with the Biden Administration to help find some of those missing documents that are scattered all over the United States, then this is unacceptable and should not be allowed. And, again, another sign of weakness on the international stage by our commander-in-chief.”