Rep. Devin Nunes on Sunday offered to help “rehabilitate” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam B. Schiff after a longtime adherence to false claims in support of the FBI’s conduct in the Trump-Russia investigation.
Mr. Nunes, the ranking Republican on the committee, made the tongue-in-cheek offer in a letter to Mr. Schiff that cited his numerous statements that were contradicted in the Justice Department inspector general report that found a slew of FBI abuses in the case.
“I understand taking action on this issue will be difficult for you, as it will be an implicit acknowledgment that you were wrong to deny these abuses and that you were complicit in the violation of an American’s civil liberties,” wrote Mr. Nunes, California Republican. “I also understand such an acknowledgment is made even more difficult by the fact that you’ve already been discredited by your years-long false claim that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to hack the 2016 presidential election.”
Mr. Schiff, California Democrat, did not immediately respond to the letter.
The letter listed seven false claims Mr. Schiff, California Democrat, made in a February 2018 memo defending the FBI’s conduct in obtaining a warrant from Foreign Intelligence Service Act court to wiretap Trump campaign figure Carter Page.
Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report, which found pervasive and major abuses in the wiretap application, showed all Mr. Schiff’s claims to be erroneous.
Mr. Nunes said it was not too late for Mr. Schiff to undertake the committee’s duty of oversight of the FBI and other intelligence agencies. He urged the chairman to schedule a hearing to explore Mr. Horowitz’s findings.
He said he refused to believe Mr. Schiff, who also is a leading figure in the impeachment effort, was “beyond redemption.”
“I invite you to work closely with me on your rehabilitation program, and look forward to your scheduling a committee hearing with IG Horowitz at the nearest opportunity,” wrote Mr. Nunes.
He said outlining every false claim made by Mr. Schiff would require too long of a letter. Instead, he listed seven statements from Mr. Schiff’s memo that were disproven by the IG report:
• FBI and Justice Department officials did not omit material information from the FISA warrant.
• The Justice Department “made only narrow use of information” from former British spy Christopher Steele’s discredited anti-Trump dossier to obtain the warrant on Mr. Page.
• In subsequent FISA renewals of the wiretap warrant, DOJ provided additional information that corroborated Mr. Steele’s reporting.
• The Page FISA warrant allowed the FBI to collect “valuable intelligence.”
• “Far from ‘omitting’ material facts about Steele, as the [the GOP-Majority] claims, DOJ repeatedly informed the Court about Steele’s background, credibility, and potential bias.”
• The FBI conducted a “rigorous process” to vet Steele’s allegations and the FISA application to wiretap Mr. Page explained the FBI’s reasonable basis for finding Steele credible.
• Steele’s prior reporting was used in criminal proceedings.
“The IG report has exposed all these declarations as false,” said Mr. Nunes.
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