During a fiery press conference on Tuesday, Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA), and Ranking Member of the House Oversight Committee, Jim Jordan (R-OH), made an explosive accusation against House Intelligence Chairman, Adam Schiff (D-CA), where they accused Schiff of blocking witness testimony, during Tuesday’s closed-door deposition with Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.
Vindman, who serves as a director on the National Security Council (NSC), arrived Tuesday morning to testify before the House Intelligence, Oversight, and Foreign Affairs committees. He expressed concern in his prepared opening statement over Trump’s request to have Ukraine investigate political opponents, per Fox News.
“Chairman Schiff has prevented the witness from answering ‘certain questions’ we have during the deposition,” Rep. Jim Jordan announced. “One of the things you do in these depositions is you ask the basics: who, what, where, when, why?”
“When we asked [Vindman] who he spoke to after important events in July — Adam Schiff says, ‘No, no, no, we’re not going to let him answer that question,'” Jordan revealed. “Even though at the start of every one of these depositions, [Schiff] says these are not classified.”
Jordan said that Schiff seemed to be breaking his own rules for the hearings, implying that the chairman was acting almost as a “lawyer” for Vindman. “They don’t need Adam Schiff being Chairman and lawyer, but that’s in effect what happened today.”
“The Democrats run out here and say, ‘Ooh, the Republicans are trying to figure out who the whistleblower is,'” Jordan continued. “We’re trying to figure out who our witness list is! The resolution that the Speaker has just filed … she points this out in the resolution that this is going to go to the Judiciary Committee if, in fact, they push it there. There will be witnesses called. We would like to figure out who those witnesses should be, so the American people can get the facts, get the truth, and we know who these individuals are,” Jordan explained. (Continued Below)
Jordan expressed that he seems interesting to him that Schiff is acting “so sensitive”.
(Related: Jordan On The Impeachment Inquiry Vote: ”It’s A Continuation Of The Sham, They’re Gonna Try to Dress it Up A Little Bit”)
“I pointed out last week there 435 members of Congress … only one of them knows who the whistleblower is, more importantly, who the sources are for the whistleblower that were the basis of him filing this complaint. And somehow he doesn’t want anyone else to know that,” Jordan declared. “Mr. Schiff and his staff are the only ones in America who can know, and his evidence about his sensitivity you saw it on display today when we tried to ask the witness certain questions and Mr. Schiff would not let him answer,” the Ohio Congressman stated. (Continued Below)
Rep. Steve Scalise said, “One point that needs to be made on top of what Jim Jordan just said– Adam Schiff among many things today, has been trying to claim that this is a fair process by saying that Republicans are allowed to ask questions. He gets to choose all the witnesses and him and himself only, which means it’s not a fair process on the face.”
“But even his claim now, that Republicans can ask questions has been undermined because now, he’s directing witnesses not to answer questions that he doesn’t want the witness to answer if they’re asked by Republicans. He’s not cut off one Democrat. He’s not interrupted one Democrat and told a witness not to answer Democrat member’s questions. But today, he started telling the witness ‘not to answer questions by certain Republicans’. That reeks! And, by the way, you want to talk about a Soviet-style process,” Scalise expressed. “The American people are being denied equal justice.
Scalise then proceeded to attack the impeachment proceedings in general: “It’s clear Pelosi needs to declare a mistrial. This has been a tainted process from the start. What happened today confirms even worse just how poorly Adam Schiff is handling this process and denying the ability for Republicans to even ask basic questions that are critical to the heart of whether or not a President of the United States is impeached.”
“This is by the way, that Hamilton himself warned against when he was writing in the Federalist Papers expressing concerns about how Congress would handle impeachment. This is exactly what he talked about. ‘This stinks to high heaven!’ This shouldn’t be allowed, not in the United States of America,” Scalise added. (Video Below)
Reps. Steve Scalise and Jim Jordan’s official statement:
Rep. Jim Jordan also tweeted, “4 facts: -President Trump and President Zelensky both say there was no pressure -The transcript shows no conditionality -Ukraine didn’t know aid was held back at time of the call -Ukraine never took any of the actions they were supposedly being pressured to take”.
-President Trump and President Zelensky both say there was no pressure
-The transcript shows no conditionality
-Ukraine didn’t know aid was held back at time of the call
-Ukraine never took any of the actions they were supposedly being pressured to take
— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) October 29, 2019
(Related: Right After Dems Release Their Impeachment Resolution, Repubs Send A letter Blasting McGovern’s ‘Rigged’ Process)