Rep. Adam Schiff responds to the announcement by Trump DNI John Ratcliffe that he will no longer give in-person briefings on election security.
August 30, 2020

House Intelligence Chair Adam Schiff responded to Trump and Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe's lame excuse for his recent announcement that he will no longer give in-person briefings on election security to Congress.

CNN's Dana Bash asked Schiff if he or anyone on his staff or committee had leaked information as Trump accused them of doing, and as Schiff explained, he “can't speak for what all the members of the committee have done or not done including a lot of the Republican members,” but this is just “another lie” which “is an illogical inconsistency to say we're going to put it on paper so it can't leak rather than speak to the Congress” which “doesn't make any sense.”

SCHIFF: But what is more, Dana, you can tell this is another falsehood, a false rationalization by the president. After the last set of briefings before Congress, the Director of National Intelligence offered to brief Congress again. They weren't concerned about leaks after the last briefing or they wouldn't have come back to offer another briefing.

Something changed, Dana. What changed is the president, probably in another fit, saying I don't want Congress informed. Because the last time that Congress was informed, the Director of National Intelligence had to put out another statement to acknowledge the fact that the Russians are helping Donald Trump again. […] That's his goal to suppress that information.

Schiff also reminded everyone who this information belongs to when asked by Bash if he'd be willing to subpoena intelligence officials to appear in public in a hearing before the election.

SCHIFF: That is certainly one of the tools we may use. I can't speak for what decision ultimately we'll make. That's a decision that has to go to the speaker. We will compel the intelligence community to give Congress the information that we need, also to speak plainly to the American people because this information, this intelligence paid for by taxpayers doesn't belong to Donald Trump, it doesn't belong to the intelligence agencies, it belongs to the American people.

The agencies are merely the custodians of that information, and the American people ought to know what Russia is doing, they ought to know their president is unwilling to stand up to Vladimir Putin, they ought to know that senators like Ron Johnson are pushing a Kremlin false narrative about Joe Biden and doing it knowingly.

And that information belongs to the American people, it doesn't belong to Donald Trump.

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