“A CLASSIC CASE OF OBSTRUCTION”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Jun. 13, 2018) — On Wednesday night’s “Hannity,” broadcast from Singapore due to Hannity’s trip there to cover President Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong-Un on Tuesday, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes affirmed a report issued Tuesday by Fox News’s Catherine Herridge that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein intimidated and threatened committee staffers with “subpoenas” of their emails and phone records in January.
For almost a year, Nunes and other members of Congress have been seeking documents connected with possible abuse of the FISA law by the Justice Department and FBI. Nunes’s committee is also attempting to discover why the FBI launched an investigation into the Trump campaign using an “informant,” as was reported by The New York Times and The Washington Post last month.
“Did he threaten to subpoena the emails of you, other members of Congress, your staffs, and other documents because he had one of his temper tantrums and got angry?” Hannity began the interview.
While Nunes did not answer the question directly at first, he responded that “this has been going on since last August…We’ve had many — what I would say — altercations with the deputy attorney general and his staff…When it comes to attacking staff…that’s when you’ve gone too far. The staff are citizens of the United States who work hard for their country; they’re patriots; they don’t have the ability to come on television like I do and plead their case. Staff definitely have felt threatened; just recently, the staff were all kicked out of the room. What people should be concerned about the most right now is obstruction of a valid congressional investigation by the Department of Justice…”
Nunes stressed that Rosenstein’s “behavior is unacceptable” in denying the committee’s requests for documents and, most recently, “kicking out all of the House Intelligence Committee members.” Nunes termed Rosenstein’s conduct “a classic case of obstruction of a congressional investigation.”
A Tuesday deadline for documents came and went, with Justice offering a meeting on Thursday with Nunes and the members of an informal group known as “the Gang of Eight” consisting of eight members of Congress with whom highly-classified information is shared.
Nunes said he is not satisfied and that the Justice Department could simply produce the requested documents so that the committee “could exonerate them.” Nunes added that while he and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan are expecting to see Justice documents on Thursday, he and other Republicans on the Intel Committee “signed a letter today to the Department of Justice to say it is totally unacceptable…” at which point Hannity cut in and asked what could be done.
Nunes responded that Rosenstein could be impeached, held in contempt of Congress or that “the President of the United States” could “order them to give us all the documents.”
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.