Schiff rebukes McCarthy over potential committee removals, subpoenas

by Jacob Fuller

Willie R. Tubbs, FISM News


California Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff spent considerable effort Sunday in heaping criticism toward potential new House Speaker Kevin McCarthy over the latter’s threat to remove Schiff and other Democrats from certain committees and the possibility of Republican-led investigations.

Schiff, appearing on CNN’s State of the Union, spared no effort in painting McCarthy as all things unseemly and a man so bent on the speakership he’d do anything to secure the necessary votes.

“Kevin McCarthy has no ideology,” Schiff said. “He has no core set of beliefs. It’s very hard not only to get to 218 that way — it’s even more difficult to keep 218. That’s his problem.”

McCarthy has made no secret of his desire to remove Schiff, Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) from their spots on House committees.

The top House Republican has cited Schiff’s pushing of the ‘Russia Gate’ hoax, Swalwell’s statements on China, and Omar’s consistent anti-Israel stances as reason enough to prevent Schiff and Swalwell from serving on the House Intelligence Committee and Omar from serving on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The move would be extreme, but it would not be without precedent. All Democrats and 11 Republicans voted in 2021 to remove Georgia Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene from her committee assignments after she made controversial comments on social media about a litany of topics.

Schiff said he believes he and his two fellow Democrats will be targeted as a means of revenge for the Taylor Greene vote, which riled not only the Georgia congresswoman but other outspoken Republicans like Florida’s Matt Gaetz and Arizona’s Paul Gosar.

“McCarthy’s problem is not with what I have said about Russia,” Schiff said. “McCarthy’s problem is, he can’t get to 218 without Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar and Matt Gaetz. And so he will do whatever they ask. And, right now, they’re asking for me to be removed from our committees. And he’s willing to do it. He’s willing to do anything they ask. And that’s the problem.”

Schiff’s comments are inflammatory and lack some context. While Taylor Greene is a supporter, Gaetz is primarily asking that someone other than McCarthy be named speaker. However, the spirit of Schiff’s comment is accurate as McCarthy will need the support of virtually all Republicans to secure the speakership and is likely to have to negotiate to secure the support of farther-right figures.

McCarthy has not commented on Schiff’s statements, choosing instead to focus on priming Republicans and the nation at-large for what he and conservatives plan to do in January. Similar to other Republicans, the bulk of McCarthy’s activity at present has centered on border security and the economy.

“In 42 days, Biden’s open border closes,” McCarthy tweeted last week. “In 42 days, we end one-party rule. In 42 days, accountability is coming.”

Part of that accountability will be a series of hearings. Republicans have already vowed to investigate the business dealings of President Joe Biden and his son Hunter, but there are other hearings likely as well.

Schiff — a member of the Jan. 6 Committee, from which both Republicans Jim Jordan of Ohio and Jim Banks of Indiana were refused membership — seems to believe he will eventually be the target of some Republican investigation.

While he indicated a willingness to participate, Schiff refused to offer a blanket commitment to cooperate.

“We will have to consider the validity of the subpoena,” Schiff said. “But I would certainly view my obligation, the administration’s obligation to follow the law.”

Republicans previously balked at or outright refused to comply with subpoenas from various Democrat-led panels.