Reprinted with permission from Shareblue.
A top member of the House Intelligence Committee has revealed shocking details about how Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) abused his position as committee chairman to obstruct the Mueller investigation and shield Trump from accountability.
In a blistering op-ed for Nunes’ hometown Fresno Bee, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA), said that Nunes blocked committee Democrats from following up on leads about “worrisome contacts between the Russians and candidate Trump, his family, his businesses, and his campaign.”
What’s more, Swalwell said, Nunes blocked special counsel Robert Mueller from seeing evidence that “many witnesses committed perjury or offered information relevant to the special counsel’s work” when they testified before the committee.
But Swalwell revealed that in doing so, Nunes blocked Democrats from sharing the transcripts with Mueller, and with the public.
“Committee Democrats asked to immediately send the transcripts to Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who hasn’t been allowed to see them under Nunes’ rules,” Swalwell wrote. “There’s good reason to believe many witnesses committed perjury or offered information relevant to the special counsel’s work. But Nunes opposed it, and it was voted down.”
The investigation turned up a lot of potentially useful information, Swalwell said. But it was kneecapped and ended prematurely by Republicans on the committee — and Nunes repeatedly blocked efforts to follow up on promising leads.
“Though incomplete due to Republican obstruction, our investigation did reveal worrisome contacts between the Russians and candidate Trump, his family, his businesses, and his campaign,” Swalwell wrote. “Yet every time we sought to learn more, we were blocked. We sought to test witnesses’ accounts by subpoenaing third-party records such as cell phone, bank and travel records. Republicans refused to allow it.”
Nunes also refused to release the committee’s interview with Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), whose friendliness with the Russians has earned him the nickname “Putin’s favorite congressman.”
“I took part in that lengthy interview and I was disturbed by his contacts with Russia before and during the 2015-16 campaign,” Swalwell said.
But when Democrats made a motion to release that interview, “Nunes killed it.”
As Americans learn more about Nunes’ effort to keep evidence away from Mueller, Nunes is also pushing to release documents that could harm national security. He hopes that those documents will provide fodder for his repeatedly discredited conspiracy theory that Trump’s own Justice Department is out to get him.
Devin Nunes has spent the last year and a half covering up for Trump, and he’s not about to stop now. At least, not until the voters in his district have their say in a few short weeks.