FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
House GOP Demands Bipartisan Investigation of Pelosi’s CIA Accusations [Updated and Bumped]
Update by Jeff @ 12:41pm: Speaker Pelosi’s protectorate in the House has buried the GOP’s request that, if the CIA actually did lie to Congress, it be brought to their attention vis-a-vis a bipartisan investigation. The reason? If the CIA didn’t actually lie to the Congress, then Pelosi’s in some very, very hot water.
If you’re curious, by the way, Reps. Ron Paul (R-TX) and Walter Jones (R-NC) were the two Republicans who voted to keep the truth behind Pelosi’s and the CIA’s conflicting accounts under wraps. The rest of the vote was party-line.
A senior House GOP aide this morning confirmed that House Republicans will demand a bipartisan investigation of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) accusations that members of the Central Intelligence Agency “misled the Congress” in their briefings on terrorist detainees and interrogation techniques.
According to the source:
Lying to Congress of the United States is a serious crime. The Speaker has had a full week now to either put up the evidence to support the serious allegation she has leveled against the hardworking men and women of America’s intelligence community, or retract and apologize. She’s done neither. There is no choice now. A bipartisan investigation of the Speaker’s allegations is needed to get to the facts, and Republicans are done waiting.
Speaker Pelosi and her aides have been ducking the matter all week, and Democratic leaders are clearly trying to run out the clock and get to the Memorial Day recess in hopes the storm surrounding the Speaker will simply blow away once members leave town. That is unacceptable, given the serious nature of her allegations and the implications they have for our intelligence community, where her comments threaten to shred morale among the dedicated professionals serving our country.
The text of the resolution is below the fold.
H. RES. __
Raising a question of the privileges of the House.
Whereas the Honorable Nancy Pelosi, a Representative from California, served from 1997 to 2002 as Ranking Democratic Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence;
Whereas Representative Pelosi currently serves as Speaker of the House, a position of considerable power and influence within the Congress;
Whereas title 3 of the United States Code designates the Speaker of the House as third in line of succession to the Presidency;
Whereas Speaker Pelosi has publicly challenged the truthfulness of what she and other congressional leaders were told by Central Intelligence Agency officials about the agency’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques on suspected terrorists;
Whereas in an MSNBC interview on February 25, 2009, Speaker Pelosi stated, “I can say flat-out, they never told us that these enhanced interrogation techniques were being used”;
Whereas, Speaker Pelosi’s public statements allege a sustained pattern of deception by government intelligence officers charged by law with informing Congress about the agency’s activities;
Whereas when asked at a press conference on May 15, 2009 widely reported by the news media, “Madame Speaker, just to be clear, you’re accusing the CIA of lying to you in September?” Speaker Pelosi stated, “Yes”;
Whereas during the same press conference the Speaker subsequently stated, “So yes, I’m saying they are misleading, the CIA was misleading the Congress” and further, “they mislead us all the time” and “they misrepresented every step of the way”;
Whereas in a memorandum to CIA employees released publicly on May 15, 2009, Leon Panetta, the CIA Director, stated, “It is not our policy or practice to mislead Congress. That is against our laws and our values. As the Agency indicated previously in response to Congressional inquiries, our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, describing the enhanced interrogation techniques that had been employed”;
Whereas national and international media reports on this controversy have damaged the reputation of the House by raising questions about whether the effectiveness of congressional oversight may have been undermined through false or misleading statements by intelligence officials;
Whereas in order to safeguard the reputation of the House it is imperative to reconcile as soon as possible the aforementioned contradictory statements by Speaker Pelosi and CIA Director Panetta: Now, therefore, be it
(1) a Select Subcommittee of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence shall be established to review and verify the accuracy of the Speaker’s aforementioned public statements;
(2) the Select Subcommittee shall be comprised of four members of the full committee, two appointed by the chairman of the committee and two by its ranking minority member;
(3) The subcommittee shall have the same powers to obtain testimony and documents pursuant to subpoena authorized under clause 2(m) of Rule XI of the Rules of the House; and,
(4) the Select Subcommittee report its findings and recommendations to the House not later than sixty calendar days after adoption of this resolution.