Nancy Pelosi Calls on Paul Ryan to Remove Rep. Nunes as House Intel Committee Chair for Releasing the FISA Memo

US Representative from California Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, speaks to the press about the investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on March 24, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / NICHOLAS KAMM (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called on Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) to remove Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) as chairman of the House Intelligence Committee for Nunes’ decision to release the memo detailing alleged misconduct by senior Justice Department and FBI officials.

Pelosi wrote in her letter to Speaker Ryan:

The decision of Chairman Nunes and House Republicans to release a bogus memo has taken the GOP’s cover-up campaign to a new, completely unacceptable extreme.

Both the DOJ and FBI oppose releasing the Nunes memo.  As the Department of Justice warned, the public release of the memo would be an “unprecedented action” and “extraordinarily reckless.”  The FBI also expressed that the agency has “grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.”

It has now come to our attention that Congressman Nunes deliberately and materially altered the contents of the memo since it was voted on by the House Republicans.  This action is not only dangerous, it is illegitimate, and violates House rules.

“Congressman Nunes’ deliberately dishonest actions make him unfit to serve as Chairman, and he must be removed immediately from this position,” the House minority leader added.

Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee voted to release the memo to the public on Monday; President Donald Trump has five days to object to the memo’s release.

The memo allegedly describes how senior Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials used the unverified Trump dossier to obtain a surveillance warrant on Trump campaign staffer Carter Page. The memo also supposedly details how those senior officials in the DOJ and the FBI misled the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court on how the Trump dossier was actually opposition research funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Democrats and their allies have recently started attempting to discredit Rep. Nunes ahead of the release of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) memo.

MSNBC analyst John Heilemann asked two Democratic lawmakers in two separate interviews whether Chairman Nunes was “compromised by the Russians” or a “Russian agent.”

Heilemann asked Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT), “Is it possible that the Republican chairman of the House intel committee has been compromised by the Russians? Is it possible that we actually have a Russian agent running the House intel committee on the Republican side?”

Murphy rebuked that question, suggesting that there was “no information to suggest that it is” the case. Heileman responded, “[Nunes is] behaving like someone who’s been compromised, and there are people in the intelligence community, and others with great expertise in this area, who look at him and say, ‘That guy’s been compromised.”

Rep. Pelosi added, “It is long overdue that you, as Speaker, put an end to this charade and hold Congressman Nunes and all Congressional Republicans accountable to the oath they have taken to support and defend the Constitution, and protect the American people.”

Pelosi concluded, “The integrity of the House is at stake.  We look forward to your immediate action on this subject.”

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