Adam Schiff Changed Russia Document Release Strategy Because Grenell Forced His Hand

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 02: House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) looks on during a weekly news conference held by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on October 2, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Pelosi and Schiff updated members of the media on the latest developments related to …
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Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), had only planned to release partial transcripts from the committee’s Russia investigation, not all of them, a source with knowledge of his efforts told Breitbart News.

But then, when acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell announced he was prepared to release all of the transcripts in full—something Grenell had planned to do on Friday morning if Schiff had not done so—Schiff changed his strategy and agreed to release them all in full.

An intelligence community source told Breitbart News that Schiff was caught attempting to weaponize the information through selective and partial releases, but Grenell’s actions forced his hand and made him release them all in full. In a letter first reported by the Washington Examiner’s Byron York earlier this week, Grenell informed Schiff that the documents were ready for release.

Grenell wrote to Schiff in the May 4 letter:

All of the transcripts, with our required redactions, can be released to the public without any concerns of disclosing classified material. I urge you to honor your previous public statements, and your committee’s unanimous vote on this matter, to release all 53 cleared transcripts to Members of Congress and the American public as soon as possible.

Schiff had been, the intelligence source told Breitbart News, planning to selectively release the documents to try to frame his narrative instead of the one the documents show, which is that several key players in the investigation knew early on in the process that there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.

Fox News reported before this set of documents was released that Schiff was in “panic mode” because of what Grenell was doing to bring these documents out to the public.

Then, when it became clear that Grenell was set to release the full set of documents through the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), Schiff changed course and decided to instead preempt Grenell’s planned release of the documents by releasing them himself.

Schiff’s change of course, the intelligence source noted, is easily evidenced by the fact that ODNI released the same documents Schiff did “minutes earlier” on Thursday night.

What’s more, this may keep getting worse for Schiff. Fox News’s Ed Henry on Thursday evening also reported that more documents may be forthcoming in the coming days, citing sources who witnessed Grenell hand-delivering documents to the Justice Department earlier in the day.

UPDATE 9:25 P.M. ET:
After the publication of this article, Schiff spokesman Patrick Boland responded to Breitbart News by denying the story.

“This is obviously untrue as it was the White House that held up the release of the transcripts with the acquiescence of the ODNI,” Boland said in an email. “The Chairman has been pushing for these transcripts to be released for almost two years, and these deliberate misrepresentations by Grenell and his staff are exactly the type of behavior you get when a president installs a political operative without any national security experience or qualification as DNI.”

It is worth noting that Boland’s assertion that Grenell does not have experience in national security matters is not true. Grenell’s first intelligence briefing was back in 2001, when Schiff was just a freshman congressman. Grenell was at the time the Director of Communications and Public Diplomacy for the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations. He served in the role for all eight years of the George W. Bush administration. Also, later, as U.S. Ambassador to Germany during President Donald Trump’s administration, he managed one of the largest CIA stations in the world in Berlin and used the position to push Germany to ban Hezbollah.


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