House Republicans spoke to reporters before hearing from President Trump’s former Russia aide Fiona Hill as she appeared for a transcribed testimony before the House Intel, Foreign Affairs, and Oversight and Reform Committees on Monday.
Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH), Lee Zeldin (R-NY), and Scott Perry (R-PA), slammed House Intel Chairman Adam Schiff for “cherry picking” parts of testimony that he wants leaked to push his narrative.
“The first two interviews, totaling approximately 20 hours, not one single thing that was said in there that is classified. Not one single thing was said in those respective interviews that the American people should not be able to see, should not be able to hear,” Rep. Jordan said.
“I think in those total 20 hours of interviews with both Ambassador Volker and Ambassador Yovanovitch, there have been a total of 12 members of Congress in those interviews. Which means, 423 members of Congress weren’t present to hear the testimony from the witnesses that Mr. Schiff has called. 423 members of Congress that represent three quarters of a million people, who don’t know what frankly is going on. At some point they’re gonna be asked to vote on this, and that just seems to me, exactly the wrong way to do this thing,” he continued. [Emphasized]
He noted that former Russia aide Fiona Hill was willing to come voluntarily, but Schiff subpoenaed her anyway to “ask certain questions” and again, “keep those secret, except for the certain things that he wants to leak, the ‘cherry picked information’ that he wants to leak to the American people.”
“The tragedy and the crime here is that the American people don’t get to see what’s going on in these sesssions,” Jordan added. (Continued Below)
Rep. Lee Zeldin pointed out that in previous impeachment proceedings, the minority in the House had rights, including the President. “What should happen here is there should be a vote. If the House Democrats want to persue impeachment, they should put their money where their mouth is and have a vote. And there should be a process that allows the minority party to have subpoena power, that allows the President to be present, his counsel to be present at these depositions, to be able to ask questions, to be able to present evidence,” Zeldin said.
“The Democrats should be providing the minority and the President the same rights that they would demand if the roles were reversed. Instead, what you’re seeing is a stratedgy by Adam Schiff and the Democrats to have closed door depositions in his bunker here in the basement of the United States Capitol and then to cherry pick out facts that they think can to spun to best help make their case, by also witholding other key facts, and then, also outright lying,” he continued.
He also explained that Ukrainian President Zelenksy had no idea during the July 25th call that there was already a hold on aid. “The readouts of the July 25th call on both Ukraine’s side and the U.S. side, mentioned nothing about a hold on aid or a quid pro quo. July 26th, the day after that phone call Ambassador Volker met with President Zelensky. During that meeting, there was no reference to a hold on aid or a quid pro quo. In the weeks that followed, Ambassador Volker is in constant contact with Ukraine leadership and in no point do they make any reference to a hold on aid or a quid pro quo. It wasn’t until after Ukraine read a ‘Politico’ story that they asked Ambassador Volker. [He] testified that the aid was absolutely getting released. And then, the aid got released.” (Continued Below)
Zeldin also noted that as the aid to Ukraine got released, Ukraine didn’t have to open any new investigations. “All of those facts are being ignored,” he said.
“The new best evidence to try and take down the President for quid pro quo is that people believe that Ambassador Sondland is going to testify that President Trump told him that there was no quid pro quo. I’m scrathing my head as I’m watching the news. This is your best evidence, your freshest evidence, your new angle that President Trump had a quid pro quo because he told Ambassador Sondland that there would be no quid pro quo?” Zeldin asked.
“On the process and the substance, there’s so much that is so wrong about this entire clown show. But it’s really important when talking about the hold on aid and the quid pro quo… that please, cover everything that you do know, even if it doesn’t help take down a sitting President,” Zelin urged reporters. [Emphasized]
They also explained that Schiff said on Sunday during an interview that the reason why he doesn’t depositions to be released is because the “Republicans want the witnesses to be able to compare notes for their testimony”. Zeldin stressed, “These are Adam Schiff’s witnesses! We can’t call any witnesses! We didn’t call these witnesses; these aren’t are witnesses.” [Emphasized] (Video Below)
Reps. Jordan, Zeldin and Perry’s full remarks: