The top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee has formally requested that the panel’s chairman, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., testify in a closed-door setting as part of the impeachment inquiry against President Trump.
In a letter to Adam Schiff, Devin Nunes states:
“On November 6th, you announced the beginning of public hearings associated with the Democratic Party’s partisan impeachment inquiry into President Donald J. Trump,” Nunes wrote Friday. “Based on the precedent and lack of jurisdiction, the House Intelligence Committee should not take the lead in conducting such hearings; however, by now the American people know your desire to see the duly-elected president removed from office outweighs your sense of responsibility to running a functioning intelligence oversight committee.
“Prior to the start of your public show trial next week, at least one additional closed-door deposition must take place,” he continued. “Specifically, I request that you sit for a closed-door deposition before the House Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight Committees.”
Nunes went on to note that in August 2019, Schiff and his staff “met with or talked to the whistleblower who raised an issue with President Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President [Volodymyr] Zelensky.”
“Although you publicly claim nothing inappropriate was discussed, the three committees deserve to hear directly from you the substance and circumstances surrounding any discussions conducted with the whistleblower, and any instructions you issued regarding those discussions,” Nunes wrote. “Given that you have reneged on your public commitment to let the committees interview the whistleblower directly, you are the only individual who can provide clarity as to these conversations.”
He added: “As you know, the House Intelligence Committee has precedent for such an arrangement. During the Committee’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, sitting Members of Congress agreed to participate in closed-door depositions. Given your championing of such an arrangement two years ago, you should have no problem with you appearing before the three committees to discuss your interactions with the whistleblower.”