Democratic Representatives Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, both from California, were outraged when newly elected Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy denied their nominations to the House Intelligence Committee and posted their fury on social media.
“Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell’s appointments to the House Intelligence Committee were denied,” McCarthy wrote. “I’m dedicated to restoring the @HouseIntel Committee’s reputation and honesty so that the American people may once again have faith in it.”
In his letter, the speaker said that Swalwell and Schiff had both contributed to decreased national security through their prior activities on the intelligence committee. Additionally, he brought up Swalwell’s supposed friendship with a Chinese agent and Schiff’s continued promotion of the Russian connection conspiracy theory.
“I am unable to prioritize partisan loyalty over the security of the country or to accept years of service as the primary criterion for participation on this crucial body. Integrity is more important,” McCarthy said.
“The misuse of this panel during the 116th and 117th Congresses, in his opinion, seriously damaged its primary responsibilities for national security and oversight, ultimately making our country less safe.”
In response, Schiff leveled his own charges against McCarthy.
He said, “Kevin McCarthy just removed me and @RepSwalwell off the Intelligence Committee.”
Schiff continued, “This is petty, political revenge for looking into Donald Trump. He will quickly realize how mistaken he is if he believes that this will stop me. I’ll always stand up for our democracy.”
Swalwell expressed his displeasure by citing a Pinocchio rating from the Washington Post.
He tweeted, “This denial is based on a claim that the independent fact-checker at the Washington Post assigned 4 Pinocchios.”
“Ryan and Speaker Boehner, both members of the Gang of 8, appointed me to Intel with access to the same information that McCarthy is slanting. He can stop me from using Intel, but I won’t leave,” he added.
McCarthy also announced the formation of two exclusive subcommittees, one to look into the weaponization of the federal government and the other to see if gain-of-function research conducted by the government contributed to the coronavirus outbreak.