The Washington Post took on House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff calling his claim that he had not been in contact with the whistleblower accusing President Donald Trump of misconduct a blatant lie.
The Post’s Glenn Kessler wrote early on Friday that Schiff’s claim was a “flat-out false,” and cited several of his interviews in which he made similar statements.
“Unlike the quick two-step dance he performed with Anderson Cooper, Schiff simply says the committee had not spoken to the whistleblower. Now we know that’s not true.”
The Post writer highlighted an interview on CNN when Schiff made a stealthy sidestep of the question, and another time when he flat out lied about the issue, and he had information to back up his claims.
Cooper: “Just to be clear, you don’t know who this alleged whistleblower is or what they are alleging?”
Schiff: “I don’t know the identity of the whistleblower.”
Cooper: “And they haven’t contacted you or their legal representation hasn’t contacted you?”
Schiff: “I don’t want to get into any particulars. I want to make sure that there’s nothing that I do that jeopardizes the whistleblower in any way.”
And again on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” when the representative appeared to have lied outright.
“There’s nothing wrong with dodging a question, as long as you don’t try to mislead,” Kessler wrote about the exchange. “But Schiff on ‘Morning Joe’ clearly made a statement that was false.”
Sam Stein: “Have you heard from the whistleblower? Do you want to hear from the whistleblower? What protections could you provide to the whistleblower?”
Schiff: “We have not spoken directly with the whistleblower. We would like to. But I am sure the whistleblower has concerns that he has not been advised, as the law requires, by the inspector general or the director of national Intelligence just how he is supposed to communicate with Congress, and so the risk to the whistleblower is retaliation.”
The below excerpt from Kessler’s article details his reasons for awarding Schiff “four Pinocchios,” for his statements:
“Schiff’s answers are especially interesting in the wake of reports in the New York Times and The Washington Post that the whistleblower approached a House Intelligence Committee staff member for guidance before filing a complaint with the Intelligence Community inspector general. The staff member learned the “very bare contours” of the allegation that Trump has abused the powers of his office, The Post said.
“When the Fact Checker asked what ‘bare contours’ meant, a committee spokesman pointed to an exchange of letters. In a Sept. 13 letter to the committee, the general counsel of the director of national intelligence said that “complaint involves confidential and potentially privileged communications by persons outside the Intelligence Community.” In his own letter that day, Schiff wrote that because of that language, and because the DNI refused to affirm or deny that White House officials were involved in the decision not to forward the complaint, the committee can conclude only that “the serious misconduct involves the president of the United States and/or other senior White House or administration officials.”
Written by Savannah Pointer.