McCarthy Expels Swalwell, Schiff from House Intel Committee over Ties to Chinese Spy, ‘Russiagate’ Promotion

Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday expelled from the House Intelligence Committee Representatives Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, following through on his promise to unseat progressive Democrats with records of weaponizing power against the GOP.

McCarthy argued that the members had to be removed to restore the integrity of the committee, which he said had neglected its purpose under effective Democratic single-party rule.

“It is my assessment that the misuse of this panel during the 116th and 117th Congress severely undermined its primary national security and oversight missions – ultimately leaving our nation less safe,” McCarthy wrote in a letter to Hakeem Jeffries, the House minority leader.

“Therefore, as we enter a new Congress, I am committed to returning the Intelligence Committee to one of genuine honesty and credibility that regains the trust of the American people,” he added.

McCarthy pledged to remove the pair from the committee in November, citing Swalwell’s association with a suspected Chinese spy who targeted U.S. politicians and Schiff’s promotion of the now-debunked Steele dossier alleging Trump colluded with Russia to manipulate the 2016 presidential election.

“One thing I said from the very beginning, Eric Swalwell cannot get a security clearance in the public sector,” McCarthy told Fox News at the time. “Why would we ever give him a security clearance and the secrets to America? So, I will not allow him to be on Intel.”

McCarthy also said that Schiff “lied to the American public” when he chaired the intelligence panel during the Trump administration. Republicans insisted Schiff resign in March 2019 over past comments in which he claimed there was “more than circumstantial evidence” of a conspiracy between Trump and Moscow. Special counsel Robert Mueller, tasked with investigating that allegation, did not find sufficient evidence in March 2019 that Trump’s campaign coordinated with Russia to influence the 2016 election.

Schiff and Swalwell were also major advocates for Trump’s impeachment.

Democrats also made some partisan committee ousters in 2021, when they used their majority power to bar Republican Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar from serving on congressional committees for unsavory social-media activity.

McCarthy, who was initially involved in January 6 committee recruitment before he boycotted the project in protest, was likely seeking redress against former House speaker Pelosi’s decision to disqualify his Trump-sympathetic picks from the panel. After Pelosi rejected McCarthy’s selections, which included House Freedom Caucus members such as Jim Jordan, she appointed centrist Republicans Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney, both of whom voted to impeach Trump, in their stead.

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