On Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced that the House would be voting on a resolution that was going to guarantee transparency and rules in the ‘impeachment’ proceeding which Democrats have been pushing.
But Democrats were still up to their old tricks on Wednesday, locking people out of proceedings. Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) was told the secret proceedings would continue.
🚨 🚨 BREAKING 🚨 🚨
I just returned from outside Adam Schiff’s secret chamber, where I demanded access, as is my right under House rules, to the transcripts of his Soviet-style depositions.
I was denied access.
Further, I was told that these secret hearings would continue. pic.twitter.com/YXm7UlByps
— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) October 30, 2019
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) is now taking action.
He’s filed an ethics complaint after the Star Chamber leader, House Intel Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA). Normally, actual impeachment proceedings would proceed out of the Judiciary Committee, which would have been under that Chair, Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY). But Pelosi delegated it to Schiff instead, another break from precedent and proper procedure.
Gaetz’s complaint alleges that Schiff’s handling of the proceedings has been full of unethical actions, including
“distorting @POTUS ’s call with President Zelensky, lying to the public about ‘Russian collusion’, and blocking members of Congress from attending impeachment depositions,” according to Townhall.
— Ben Siegel (@benyc) October 30, 2019
I just filed an ethics complaint against @RepAdamSchiff over his handling of the impeachment inquiry into President Trump.
Schiff has lied to the American people and abused his power.
We won't allow him to continue trampling the Constitution. pic.twitter.com/TA8ONY2OtN
— Rep. Matt Gaetz (@RepMattGaetz) October 30, 2019
“Nancy Pelosi’s impeachment resolution gives unprecedented power to the Intelligence Committee Chairman, Adam Schiff,” Gaetz told reporters ahead of filing his complaint. “That’s deeply troubling to me for a few reasons. First, Adam Schiff has proven in this process that he cannot adhere to the fundamental principles of fairness. Second, and I would say most important for my work today, is that Adam Schiff has violated the ethical rules of the House of Representatives.”
Gaetz point out how Schiff had deceived the public about what was said on the Trump phone call with Ukraine’s President Zelensky, making up things that were not in fact said and claiming Trump’s words were “‘like a classic organized crime shakedown’” on the call. Gaetz also referenced the lie that Schiff told about the Russia investigation claiming that there was “more than circumstantial evidence” that Trump had colluded with Russia.
Additionally, Gaetz noted rules Schiff was in violation of including, “A Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner may not be excluded from nonparticipatory attendance at a hearing of a committee or subcommittee […] unless the House by majority vote authorizes a particular committee or subcommittee, for purposes of a particular series of hearings on a particular article of legislation or on a particular subject of investigation, to close its hearings to Members, Delegates, and the Resident Commissioner by the same procedures specified in this subparagraph for closing hearings to the public.”
Holding a closed hearing for impeachment hearings that do not contain classified information or have any specific reason to be closed is outrageous.
Schiff also didn’t tell the truth about prior contacts that he and his aide had had with the Ukraine whistleblower. On that basis alone, he really should recuse himself from the matter.
Gaetz’s filing comes the day after a big dust-up when Schiff intervened during a hearing and wouldn’t let Republicans ask questions of Lt. Col Alexander Vindman. Schiff stopped Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) from asking Vindman who he had spoken to about the matter. According to Jordan, Schiff said, “No, no, no, we’re not going to let him answer that question,” as though he were Vindman’s lawyer and not the head of a committee which is supposed to be impartial and getting at the truth.
Rep. Steve Scalise told Fox News that Pelosi needed to declare a “mistrial.”
“This has been a tainted process from the start. What happened today confirms even worse just how poorly Adam Schiff is handling this process, denying the ability for Republicans to even ask basic questions that are critical to the heart of whether or not a President of the United States is impeached.”