House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffReport finds growing white nationalist threatHouse panel to take up 2002 war authorization repeal in ‘coming weeks’House Democrats want to silence opposing views, not ‘fake news’MORE on Thursday defended fellow California Democratic Rep. Eric SwalwellEric Michael SwalwellGOP leader to try to force Swalwell off panelLaurence Tribe: President or not, Trump can be made to pay for the Jan. 6 insurrectionA year later, lawmakers long for hugs and Chuck E. CheeseMORE as a “trusted and valued” member of the panel amid a GOP effort to remove Swalwell over his former relationship with an alleged Chinese spy.
Schiff defended his Democratic colleague as House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Forget about comity in CongressThe GOP bets against American recoveryOvernight Health Care: A number of Republican lawmakers are saying no to COVID-19 vaccines | European AstraZeneca suspensions threaten global COVID-19 response | OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma proposes B bankruptcy exitMORE (R-Calif.) unveiled a resolution to kick Swalwell off the Intelligence panel, which the GOP leader could force a House floor vote on as soon as Thursday.
I have filed a resolution to remove Rep. Eric Swalwell from the House Intelligence Committee.
Swalwell engaged in a years-long relationship with a suspected Chinese spy, and his conduct makes clear he has no place serving on the committee in charge of America’s top secrets. pic.twitter.com/8Tb9TOh976
Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) March 18, 2021
Schiff said that Swalwell was given a counterintelligence briefing years ago and “acted fully in accordance with his responsibilities.”
Its disturbing that Kevin McCarthy is attempting to weaponize classified counterintelligence briefings as a political cudgel, and use them to smear a House colleague in the process. Members face real counterintelligence risks from sophisticated actors, and bad faith political attacks on Members will only make it more difficult to respond,” Schiff said.
McCarthy is calling on Democrats to remove Swalwell from the Intelligence Committee over his former ties to Christine Fang, who has been identified as a suspected Chinese intelligence operative.
Axios reported late last year that Fang helped fundraise for Swalwell’s 2014 reelection campaign and helped place at least one intern in his office. Federal investigators alerted Swalwell around 2015 about their concerns about Fang and gave him a briefing. Swalwell has said he provided information to the FBI about Fang and cut off ties with her.
Authorities have not accused Swalwell of any wrongdoing and don’t believe that Fang received or passed on classified information during her efforts to target American politicians.
McCarthy argued that Fang’s targeting of Swalwell would make it difficult for him to secure a security clearance and should disqualify him from serving on the Intelligence panel. He also hinted at information that he and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiCongress honors Capitol Police with Congressional Gold MedalsHave Biden and the Democrats already hit their high water mark?Watch live: Pelosi discuses Violence Against Women ActMORE (D-Calif.) received in a classified briefing, but declined to provide details.
“I cannot tell you what I was briefed in a classified briefing. But what’s in the public domain, he does not rise to the occasion to get a security clearance in the private sector. If you cannot get a security clearance in the private sector, you should not be able to be on Intel,” McCarthy said at a press conference in the Capitol on Thursday.Any floor vote forced by McCarthy on the resolution to remove Swalwell from the Intelligence Committee is expected to fail along party lines.
Swalwell, who served as one of the impeachment managers during the Senate trial last month arguing that former President TrumpDonald TrumpBorder surge scrambles Senate immigration debateGOP looks to measures barring trans athletes to rally votersHouse GOP holdouts muddle Trump vaccine messageMORE should be impeached for inciting the Jan. 6 insurrection, blasted McCarthy’s effort as “the New McCarthyism.”
“Meet the New McCarthyism. Multiple sentences in resolution state Swalwell has not denied… Yet fails to include multiple FBI statements of no wrongdoing and did nothing but cooperate. All of this to deflect from @GOPLeaders support for QAnon,” Swalwell tweeted.
Democrats have sought to tie McCarthy to Rep. Marjorie Taylor GreeneMarjorie Taylor GreeneRep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says she’s meeting with Trump ‘soon’ in FloridaQAnon site shutters after reports identifying developerRepublicans head to runoff in GA-14MORE (R-Ga.), who has acknowledged that she previously believed the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory. Greene was removed from House committees for past comments suggesting that school shootings were staged and appearing to endorse violence against Democrats.
McCarthy has previously condemned QAnon and said last summer in a Fox News interview: Let me be very clear, there is no place for QAnon in the Republican Party.”