House Intelligence Committee ranking Republican Rep. Devin Nunes said committee chair Adam Schiff is “in need of rehabilitation” after Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s FISA report contradicted Schiff’s past claims.
“After publishing false conclusions of such enormity on a topic directly within this committee’s oversight responsibilities, it is clear you are in need of rehabilitation, and I hope this letter will serve as the first step in that vital process,” Nunes said in a letter on Sunday.
Nunes said that Schiff had failed to conduct proper oversight while “hijacking” the Intelligence Committee “as a launching pad to impeach the president for issues that have no intelligence component at all.”
Nunes said to Schiff: “As part of your rehabilitation, it’s crucial that you admit you have a problem.”
In a 2018 memo, Schiff had dismissed Nunes’ concerns about the FBI’s use of a FISA warrant to monitor Trump campaign associate Carter Page. Horowitz’s report confirmed that the FBI’s warrant applications included 17 “significant errors and omissions,” including a doctored email and reliance on unverified information from anti-Trump dossier author Christopher Steele. Schiff was a huge proponent of the phony Steele dossier.
Schiff’s memo downplayed Steele’s role and denied FBI wrongdoing, saying, “FBI and DOJ officials did not ‘abuse’ the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) process, omit material information, or subvert this vital tool to spy on the Trump campaign.” Schiff also claimed at the time that the DOJ “made only narrow use of information from Steele’s sources” for the Page warrant.
Nunes listed these statements and others by Schiff, such as how the FBI conducted a “rigorous process” when vetting Steele’s information, noting that “[t]he IG report exposed all these declarations as false.”
Horowitz’s report indicated that Steele’s information was not properly vetted, yet was key in convincing attorneys to give the go-ahead to the FISA warrant application, which was previously deemed a “close call.”
Nunes called on Schiff to call Horowitz before their committee “at the nearest opportunity.”
In his letter, Nunes recognized Schiff’s acknowledgment of the “issues and errors” described in Horowitz’s report, but said that Schiff’s opposition to concerns raised by Attorney General William Barr and Connecticut U.S. Attorney John Durham — who is conducting a broader probe of the Russia investigation’s origins — “makes it clear your rehabilitation will be a long, arduous process.”