(CNSNews.com) - House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday joined the Republican effort to censure House intelligence committee Chairman Adam Schiff for lying to the American people. And McCarthy also wants Schiff removed as chairman of the intelligence committee, which is now heading the Democrats' "impeachment inquiry."
Calls to ditch Schiff intensified following a New York Times report saying that Schiff learned about the "outlines" of the whistleblower's complaint "days before" it was filed, something he did not disclose.
"Every time they have attempted a coup, there's been one common denominator – the lies and deceit of Adam Schiff," McCarthy told Fox News's Laura Ingraham.
"He is now, as you know, a fact witness, and nowhere in our justice system allows a fact witness to be the prosecutor. He needs to recuse himself today, and the Speaker needs to remove him as the chairman of one of our most sensitive committees that we have -- the intel committee."
According to the New York Times:
The C.I.A. officer (the whistleblower) approached a House Intelligence Committee aide with his concerns about Mr. Trump only after he had had a colleague first convey them to the C.I.A.’s top lawyer. Concerned about how that initial avenue for airing his allegations through the C.I.A. was unfolding, the officer then approached the House aide. In both cases, the original accusation was vague.
The House staff member, following the committee’s procedures, suggested the officer find a lawyer to advise him and meet with an inspector general, with whom he could file a whistle-blower complaint. The aide shared some of what the officer conveyed to Mr. Schiff. The aide did not share the whistle-blower’s identity with Mr. Schiff, an official said.
Two weeks ago, Schiff said, "We have not spoken directly to the whistleblower." Schiff never said that one of his Democrat staffers had spoken to the complainant and helped him find a lawyer -- a lawyer with ties to anti-Trump Democrats, of course.
The Times quoted a Schiff spokesman as saying, "Like other whistle-blowers have done before and since under Republican and Democratic-controlled committees, the whistle-blower contacted the (intelligence) committee for guidance on how to report possible wrongdoing within the jurisdiction of the intelligence community.”
Now McCarthy says censuring Schiff is not enough:
"He should be removed from the chairmanship of the Intel committee, and one person makes that decision, the Speaker of the House." McCarthy said he first requested Schiff’s removal in March, for lying about having “proof” that Trump had colluded with Russia, even before the Mueller report came out -- and found no proof.
McCarthy agreed it's unlikely that Pelosi will remove Schiff as intelligence committee chairman, and he also denounced Pelosi’s refusal to have a floor vote on impeachment:
Every time that we’ve gone through an impeachment, we’ve had an impeachment inquiry vote on the floor of the House. Why do you have that? Because it sets up the rules and it also empowers the minority to also have subpoena rights.
Think about if you went before a trial but you couldn't call any witnesses. This is exactly what she’s working through. And you’re supposed to go through the Judiciary Committee.
No, where does she go? To Adam Schiff, the individual who has continued to lie. He lied on MSNBC, he lied last Sunday when he was asked does he know who the whistle-blower is. He lied when he didn't tell the Intel committee when he had two opportunities when he had already met. This sounds a lot like the Kavanaugh situation. the same situation is building of exactly what they’re doing here. This just shows this is all political.
Ingraham asked McCarthy why the whistleblower contacted one of Schiff's staff before making his complaint public: (The whistleblower’s lawyer issued a statement saying there was no contact with Schiff himself before the complaint was issued. But what about the Schiff staffer?)
"I think Adam Schiff needs to tell us what did he know, when did he know it, and how many times did he lie to us in the process?" McCarthy responded.
And you're going to tell me this staffer never told the chairman who he was, didn't advise in the process, and Schiff didn't advise the staffer on the direction? Because what did they tell this whistle-blower? Where to go to get an attorney. Much like the person who came forward against Kavanaugh. The exact same pattern we have found before.
Remember what they wanted to do? On the day the president was being sworn into office was the first day that the Democrats talked about impeachment in print. They voted on it three times. Twice they voted on impeaching this president before one word ever came out from the Mueller report.
This has been political for day one. And Adam Schiff has proven from this point here, he has no credibility. He has no credibility to be a chairman and he has no right to be a prosecutor in this case.
McCarthy said the nonstop Democrat impeachment efforts are sending a "terrible signal" to the rest of the world and to foreign leaders who will no longer feel comfortable talking to a U.S. president if details of their conversations are going to leak out.
Meanwhile, as the New York Times opined, "The whistle-blower’s decision to offer what amounted to an early warning to the intelligence committee’s Democrats is also sure to thrust Mr. Schiff even more forcefully into the center of the controversy as a target of Mr. Trump’s."
Sure enough, in a series of comments and tweets on Wednesday, a furious president Trump denounced Schiff as a lying low-life, and more.
Trump also retweeted the following statement from Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), the ranking member of the intelligence committee:
"We learn from the press today that Chm Schiff had prior knowledge and involvement in the WB complaint. He withheld this info from the American people and even from the Intel Cmte. In light of this news, it’s hard to view impeachment as anything aside from an orchestrated farce," Nunes tweeted.