As the power shifts in Washington and Democrats take over prominent Congressional committees, the party now has the ability to force testimony, which will lead to serious digging in Trump’s closet in search of skeletons.
The new chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, has already set his sights on one question he wants the answer to.
In an interview with MSNBC, Schiff highlighted key areas where the Republican investigation into Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign fell short. “We know in the run-up to this meeting at Trump Tower that there were phone calls going back and forth between Don Jr. and the Russian oligarch’s son,” he said, “sandwiched between those calls… is a blocked call and we wanted to know, did that come from the president?”
Schiff described how under Devin Nunes, the Republican-led investigators decided not to subpoena the phone records to determine the identity of this blocked number. With Democrats now at the helm of the House Intelligence Committee, Schiff asserted, “we can get those phone records”.
Schiff conceded that the committee would, “only use the subpoenas as a last resort,” but added that “we do anticipate that it will be a necessary resort in some cases.”
Schiff also alluded to taking action against those who had previously lied to the House Intelligence Committee. Schiff detailed that he wanted to “hold them accountable, as indeed Michael Cohen was held accountable,” adding, “that’s an early and I think important step.”
Commenting on the wider goals of the Democratic leadership, Schiff told MSNBC, “we need to get back to operating rationally and civilly”, adding, “we don’t want to repeat the mistakes, the excesses, the overt zealous partisanship of the Republicans.”
“We fight hard and we fight tough and smart for our priorities, but we also recognize that there is something bigger than us”, he said, “we have an obligation to the entire country and to its institutions.”
Watch the full interview below.
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Oliver is a UK-born freelance writer and journalist based in Boston. He is a self-confessed politics junkie with a passion for foreign and environmental policy. His work has been featured on Open Democracy, International Policy Digest, and the London Economic. He was a regular contributor for ASEAN Today.