Mark Levin interviewed Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA), ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, on his Sunday night program, “Life, Liberty and Levin,” on the Fox News Channel. He made a few statements during that interview that need to be propagated everywhere!
The Democrats have been attacking Nunes since early 2017 when his committee began to disclose major “irregularities” by the Democrat National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign in funding the still-unverified “Russian dossier.” As Victor Davis Hanson reported in the run-up to the 2018 elections:
Prior to the committee’s work, we did not know that the FBI and Justice Department used unverified information from the Steele dossier to obtain a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court allowing for the surveillance of former Trump campaign aide Carter Page.
Without the committee’s disclosures, Americans would not have had any idea that Bruce Ohr, who once ranked fourth in the Department of Justice hierarchy, coordinated opposition research on Trump with Steele, the FBI, and Fusion GPS. Ohr took this unethical step because his wife was working for Fusion GPS — a fact that was withheld on federal disclosure forms.
The Nunes-led committee also uncovered the names of prominent FBI and DOJ officials — including James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein, and Sally Yates — who had approved FISA court warrant applications that were based on the largely discredited Steele dossier.
Most dramatically, we learned that members of the Obama administration had unmasked the names of U.S. citizens swept up in government surveillance. Many of those names were illegally leaked to the press. This disclosure forced former U.N. ambassador Samantha Power and former National Security Adviser Susan Rice to confess that they had requested most of the unmaskings. Rice had previously denied it.
Read the rest here. These facts turned Rep. Nunes into the Democrats’ “public enemy Number One,” and he has been targeted and smeared by Democrats and their lickspittle media as each subsequent disclosure about Democrat/Obama Administration wrong-doing was made public. Please keep these facts in mind as you read a sampling of his statements in response to questions by Levin on Sunday night below. (paraphrased)
Levin: What are your thoughts about the Democrats’ impeachment gambit regarding Ukraine.
Nunes: During the Russia investigation, the Democrats demanded that any Republican who had any contacts with any Russians had to be investigated thoroughly. Now with the Ukraine business, they demand that any Republican who had any contacts with Ukrainians have to be investigated. How unfair/hypocritical is that when there is ample evidence of Democrat collusion with Ukrainians in the 2016 campaign cycle?
Levin: I have watched all these witnesses being paraded before the committee and have learned nothing factual or first-hand whatsoever. The question becomes: when will they have any first-hand information? I have interviewed Senator Johnson (R-WI) who sat in on all these meetings, and he stated that the President never said or did ANYTHING like what the Democrats are accusing him of having said. Within 24 hours of the Mueller thing being over, the Democrats changed to this Ukraine impeachment business; is that part of their strategy now?
Nunes: I do. I think that they have been looking at this for a while, but they didn’t just make this up about a phone call. When the aid was withheld (for a brief period of time), that was their club that they were going to use. They were desperate because you’re right; they imploded in spectacular fashion with that Mueller report. Even the leftwing media outfits were bashing them. They didn’t want to talk about the truth about what Mueller was actually doing there for two years and what really happened because it was clear that Mueller wasn’t running the show. It was a bit of a cover-up to throw the Mueller report under the rug and move on to Ukraine. There are very hard-core partisans, and if you look at some of the people who we believe could be the whistleblower (even though we’ve never been given the name), all these people are connected – even back to the Russia hoax! I think you had a group of people who were mad, and one of them after that July 25th phone call called all of his buddies involved with the Russia hoax, and they concoct this scheme. They go in and talk to Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee. They then get advice and get a lawyer, go to the IG, and lay out here’s how will do this.
Levin: I’ve read this whistleblower statute. This so-called whistleblower who we can never name and apparently who will never testify – according to the statute, he is not a whistleblower, he’s not covered by the whistleblower statute, the President is not covered by the whistleblower statute, the phone call is not covered by the whistleblower statute, and anonymity goes to the IG of the Intelligence Community. The IG is supposed to keep the name secret with two exceptions: the President is not required to, and Congress is not required to, and in an impeachment hearing, this is the key witness who somehow cannot be brought forward. The NY Times knows who it is. I’ve said the name on my radio program; I’ve told that guy’s lawyer to come on my program and tell tens of millions of people that I’m not wrong and that he’s not it, but they don’t. If you even come close to hinting at the whistleblower in these hearings, they shut you down. Something is wrong here.
Nunes: Something is really wrong. We keep breaking up (laughing) in hearings. If you think about it for a second, they’re not laying any evidence on the table for impeachment. To get to articles of impeachment, they need to get to evidence. The whistleblower WILL have to come forward if they actually go through and impeach this president. There is no way that they will be able to continue to hide the whistleblower. Until we see the actual documentation, and that person comes in to the Intelligence Committee (which can be done in secret in a SCIF), then this isn’t going to end well for Democrats in this inquiry.
Levin: Have you ever seen an instance in which such an important witness is protected by the media, and doesn’t that demonstrate just how partisan the media have become?
Nunes: It’s real evidence that the media have become corrupt. I call them assassins for the Left. And they’re really stupid and bad at it, too. I advise all of my colleagues that, until there is a free and fair press in this country, we shouldn’t be talking to them because all it does is aid and abet the enemy. The media are doing tremendous damage to this country. They’re developing the content of which they know who this whistleblower is, and in any normal situation, they’d be outing his identity in a heartbeat. It’s likely worse than that because many of these media people have known this whistleblower for a long time because he’s probably been leaking to them (previously). If you look back on some of the media names out there, it’s clear that the information is coming from somewhere within the NSC, and that should be investigated. That NSC is way too big, and a lot of problems have come and the leaks have come from within the NSC that the President has been dealing with. Whether it’s been fake information for the Russia hoax, or now this information that’s likely dealing with this Ukraine whistleblower and some of the people who will testify next week (who work at the NSC). Having 400-500 people there coming from the bureaucracy, and the holdovers have to be Clinton-Obama Democrats because they wanted to get in there since everyone thought Hillary was going to win. It’s one of the problems Republicans have had in trying to build a relationship with the NSC. Its very difficult because there are a lot of partisan Democrats who have burrowed their way in and are causing problems for the President.
Levin: The Founders took a lot of time defining the impeachment clause in the Constitution. The phrase says, “treason, bribery, and high crimes and misdemeanors.” The Democrats think they have it figured out and are honing in on bribery and extortion. That’s not what the Founders meant about bribery, though. It’s right here in Madison’s notes. They were concerned that a president might be bribed by a foreign country. That has absolutely nothing to do with what they’re talking about in this Ukraine gambit. Nobody’s buying off the President in Ukraine by giving him money to buy his loyalties. What do you make of this whole area of impeachment (being pushed by the Democrats)?
Nunes: I look at it from the perspective of what real people out in America think about this. I think people would understand that impeachment is for something that’s really, really bad – high crimes. In Nixon’s case, people could see that there was a break-in and cover-up, and it was really the cover-up that sank him in the public’s eyes. In the Clinton impeachment, he had lied to a grand jury – pretty serious stuff. But in this case, they’re manufacturing this. I called it the other day “the mother of all conspiracy theories.” They are manufacturing a narrative out of nothing, and they really have nothing. If you do articles of impeachment, you have specific the laws that were broken, and here’s all the evidence and first-hand witnesses that show the laws being broken. But they’re not doing that, and they’re not going to have the support of the American people in this, which is why they couldn’t get even one Republican to vote for the “inquiry” – after they’d been operating for six weeks with a phone inquiry. When/if it gets to the Senate, these people are going have to come testify: the whistleblower, Adam Schiff… [Levin: do you think they’ll get Schiff?] … How does he decline the invitation to testify before the Senate, as he’s a foundational fact witness in this? What did he or his team know, and when did they know it – about this whistleblower?
Levin: We have Republicans in the Senate who don’t understand the whistleblower statue that they voted for, and they’ve been saying that “we don’t want to know who that is.” They’re trying to remove a sitting president during the course of an election cycle. The Constitution trumps any statute or so-called statutory interest. It is inconceivable that key witnesses and testimony would be concealed during the course of an impeachment trial in the Senate.
Nunes: Right. Something smells about this. There is an Intel Committee for real in the House and Senate. For something like this, if there really is classified information that is pertinent, it’s easy to protect the information, sources and method but still disclose it all to committee members. The fact the Democrats won’t even take that little step is even more of an indication that there are problems with that whistleblower, and that’s why they won’t bring him in to testify.
Levin: Do you think Schiff is refusing to let the whistleblower testify to protect himself?
Nunes: And/or his staff.
Levin: You’re on the Intel Committee. There are a lot a dangerous things going on in the world: China, Russia, Iran with its nukes, North Korea. And this is the epicenter in the House that’s supposed to be overseeing the intelligence agencies – and aspects of law enforcement and foreign policy. With Nancy Pelosi handing this to the Intel Committee, this is undermining our ability to make sure our intelligence agencies are working properly, correct?
Nunes: A lot of their (Democrat) members are a product of the late 60s/early 70s, and they have Watergate fantasies. When you look at the way the Committee was staffed up when I ran it, we were focused on China and a lot of matters around the globe. The Democrats haven’t staffed up to look into intelligence matters; they brought on people who were prepared for impeachment. They have had these fantasies for a while, and of course they were counting on Mueller to really deliver the goods. We’ve been having to deal this that from the beginning. In fact, our first meeting of Republican members of the committee before this session, I told everyone that this is not going to be the normal Intel Committee any longer. This was frustrating, as we’d been dealing with the Russia hoax for two years, but at least that deal with the DoJ and FBI and some overseas issues, so we were in the right place to do an investigation into those matters. But it just kept going after the Mueller report when Democrats said that Mueller just didn’t describe it right, and if the that report is read more carefully, we Democrats are really going to be able to get the President. There are five Democrats on the Intel Committee that have already called for the impeachment of the President over the past two years. The Intel Committees were created for a reason – to oversee intel agencies. These are big bureaucracies. The American people should expect us to put the proper resources to these agencies to get the jobs done as one of priorities of the Congress. That’s not happening. I had to get my own separate briefing before the al-Baghdadi raid in Syria for Republican members because the Democrats aren’t having any such briefings because they’re not interest in those kinds of briefings. In the last three months, we’ve only had two briefings, one of which was AFTER the raid in Syria.
Levin: Have you had any briefings on what Russia is doing?
Nunes: Not that I can recall.
Levin: And yet the Democrats claim they’re so worried about Russia.
Nunes: Well, we’ve had these publicity stunts out in the open like the Mueller hearing, but we have had very few actual intelligence briefings. Republicans have to do briefings on their own; we have to call people in or go out to agencies to get the briefings.
Levin: You’re telling me that there’s not a routine schedule to be briefed on what’s going on in Iran, China, or Russia, and nobody in the House is doing it?
Levin: That is shocking! What if we get hit again like 9/11? Then everyone’s going to be pointing fingers at everybody.
Nunes: And they’ll look at the House Intelligence Committee and say, “you guys weren’t even briefed because you didn’t have any meetings.” We’re trying to do all we can on the Republican side on our own, but we don’t control the schedule, so all we can do is call our own separate briefings. This is pretty intense to turn the Intel Committee into the impeachment committee which really should be run in the Judiciary Committee where you have lawyers, you have precedent, you have all the right things in place to do it publicly. But to turn a committee that’s supposed to be made up of members who are holding the nation’s most important secrets and are working with patriots and are trying to hold them accountable – because we’re the only ones that get to see into these black books, so to speak. And to not be doing that work is not only wrong but is dangerous. To not have the House of Representatives engaged into these agencies is how agencies go rogue. And we now have a US attorney out of Connecticut looking into some of the counter-intelligence capabilities that were abused over the last three years (or longer).
Levin: How do you respond to Democrats’ accusations that you Republicans are “attacking the DoJ and FBI”?
Nunes: Whatever Democrats are doing, they actually accuse you of doing. Everything they see we talk about is a “conspiracy theory.” They have not come to terms about what they were doing in Ukraine. They had Democrat operatives working in Ukraine to dig up dirt on Trump. They refuse to acknowledge what AG Barr and USA Durham continue to look into FISA abuse, other matters, and the origins of this Russia hoax investigation. Lee Smith’s new book, “The Plot Against the President,” lays it all out. This book is what the Democrats don’t want you to read. He did a very thorough job of covering various aspects. One is that he ties together some of the Republican-run House Intel Committee work with some of his own investigative work that is new, including that Steele didn’t really write the dossier version used to obtain FISA warrants. In reality, Democrat operatives were involved in writing it. Secondly, he weaves in just how corrupt the media was and how they were in on everything. It’s a real-life way to understand how the corrupt media worked with the Left and worked with the bureaucracy. And the fact that these Democrats et al continue to claim that it is all a conspiracy theory that counter-intel capabilities of this country were weaponized to target a political campaign is astonishing.
Levin: Isn’t it also astonishing that the media have thrown in with the highest levels of the intelligence agencies and the DoJ and the FBI? We used to say that the media was supposed to “watch government,” but now they’re part of it.
Nunes: They’re definitely part of it. One of the important steps we had to take was to expose the counter-intelligence malfeasance within the FBI. Thousands and thousands of stories of media stories were generated about how the Republicans were supposedly destroying the agencies, and yet we have subsequently found out that everything that we were saying was 100% accurate. Everything the media and Democrats said at the time was 100% false.
Levin: It’s amazing that Obama escapes all scrutiny about the Russia hoax scandal. Does that bother you?
Nunes: I don’t know how he gets away with it because what we all jokingly call it the “Obama dossier” rather than the Steele dossier… he really started it all of this. They were running this counter-intelligence investigation into the Trump campaign. Then right after the election, they were going to blame fake news, and of course, Trump turned that right back around on them. And then they concocted this scheme to go out and do a special report by three intel agencies (FBI, CIA, NSA) about how the Russians wanted Trump to win, which was all done in the last few days of the Obama Administration. The only thing we don’t know at this point is who exactly was briefed in the White House and at what time they knew. But we have the text messages that show that by the summer of 2016 they knew about the counter-intel investigation into the Trump campaign. At the end of the day, it will all get down to who is held accountable by USA Durham – if he’s able to put together an actual criminal case or if he’s only able to give us all the facts. Until then, it will be hard to know just how deep Obama’s involvement was, but for sure, he created the fuse and lit the match after the election. And this is what we’ve been dealing with for the last three years.
<end of interview>
Wow! Here’s a short summary of what we learned (which makes me wonder what else he knew that he couldn’t disclose for purposes of “House rules” or to protect intelligence sources and methods):
- The Ukraine gambit was an orchestrated and planned endeavor that commenced as a direct segue from the submission of the Mueller report which failed to deliver the goods (impeachment) to the Democrats.
- The people coordinating the Ukraine gambit all knew each other and were some of the same people involved in the Russia hoax.
- The NSC – the source of many of the Ukraine hoax witnesses – is still filled with Clinton-Obama-Democrat partisans who hate the President.
- Impeachment requires identifying actual crimes and testimony and evidence to support the allegations that those crimes were actually committed in order to develop real articles of impeachment. The Democrats have nothing.
- The Democrats are now going after poll-tested “bribery and extortion” in their impeachment inquiry. Levin pointed out that the Founders’ intent behind the use of the word bribery in the impeachment clause in the Constitution had to do with a president being paid by a foreign government (“bribed”) to betray the country – which does NOT apply to what the Democrats are claiming in their inquiry.
- The media are key players in the Ukraine gambit just as they were in the Russian hoax; they are directly involved in manufacturing and propagating the Democrats’ impeachment narrative. They used to hold government accountable; now they are part of the Deep State.
- If the Democrats vote to impeach the President, the Senate will require the whistleblower and fact witness Adam Schiff to testify, as well as others – and Democrats will rue the day.
- The House Intel Committee has been staffed by Democrats this term who are not doing the business of intelligence community oversight that needs to be done because those selected have no intel background and joined the committee to get in on the impeachment farce. There are no formal briefings being held on the real activities of the IC, including monitoring what the Chinese, Russians, North Koreans, and Iranians have been up to lately. The American people should be outraged.
- The Democrats refuse to acknowledge the legitimate ongoing investigation into the origins of the 2016 counter-intel investigation into the Trump campaign, including the continuing unlawful perversion of those same US counter-intel capabilities after the 2016 election.
- There is a decent chance that the kingfish himself – Barack Obama – will be held accountable for the abuses committed by his administration during its waning months. It all depends on what facts US Attorney Durham uncovers in his ongoing criminal investigation.
Representative Nunes is a national treasure and should be commended for his steadfast pursuit of the truth, as well as his willingness to stand fast against the hurricane of abuse that has been thrown at him over the past almost three years. Remember that the Democrats will always identify those whom they fear the most by the ferocity of their attacks on that person. Devin Nunes is at the top of their list.