President Trump and his lackeys in Congress have been desperately trying to derail the multiple investigations currently probing Russia’s interference in the November 2016, with all the bumbling incompetence that has so far come to define the Trump era.
Today, Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) both roundly criticized House Intelligence Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) from his clumsy and obvious attempts to protect the White House from scrutiny.
McCain rightfully accused Nunes of undermining the credibility of his panel, criticizing him for shutting out his Democratic counterparts and for openly playing the role of White House stooge.
“I think there needs to be a lot of explaining to do. I’ve been around for quite a while, and I’ve never heard of any such thing. Obviously, on a committee like an intelligence committee, you’ve got to have bipartisanship; otherwise, the committee loses credibility. And there’s so much out there that needs to be explained by the chairman. It’s an issue of utmost importance. And something’s got to change; otherwise, the whole effort of the House of Representatives will lose credibility. … But I think that there is more information out there. There’s more ties to Russia. There is more engagement with false information. There is a lot more associated with Russian attempts to affect our election, but there are also a lot of other Russian activities going on.”
Senator Lindsey Graham took a different approach, openly mocking Nunes for running an “Inspector Clouseau” investigation – referencing the fictional bumbling detective made famous by Peter Sellers in the Pink Panther films.
“If he’s not willing to tell the Democrats and Republicans on the committee who he met with and what he was told, then I think he’s lost his ability to lead. My belief is the House is off track and probably can’t get back on track.”
The problem that he’s created is he’s gone off on a lark by himself, sort of an Inspector Clouseau investigation here. The only way this thing can be repaired is he tells his colleagues on the House intel committee who he met with and what he saw and let them look at the same information.”
Nunes, who is ostensibly supposed to be leading the investigation into the potentially treasonous collusion between Trump’s campaign team and agents of the Russian Federation, has done nothing but draw more attention to the issue with his constant missteps and utterly bizarre decisions.
Last week, Nunes met with an unknown intelligence source on White House grounds, where he obtained classified information that indicated that the Trump team was “incidentally” surveilled by US intelligence agencies. He then held a press conference in which he announced all this in an apparent attempt to justify President Trump’s outrageous and widely debunked accusations that President Obama had been illegally wiretapping him, but all Nunes did was confirm that Trump’s team was communicating with foreign agents designated by FISA warrants.
He did not inform any of his Democratic colleagues about his actions or his discoveries, to their displeasure.
He then informed the nation that he would be presenting this information to the President and abruptly canceled the next public House intelligence committee hearing, at which former acting Attorney General Sally Yates was set to testify on former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn’s secret communications with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak.
Senators McCain and Graham have been the sole Republican voices pushing for an independent and bipartisan investigation into President Trump and his team’s connections to Russia. Their criticisms of Nunes not only show the nation that yes, this is a bipartisan issue for those willing to put country over of party but also highlight how the rest of the Republicans are all too willing to turn a blind eye to potential treason in order to pass their heinous agenda.
Watch Graham’s remarks here:
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.