Ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, Doug Collins (R-GA), posted a video on Twitter Wednesday where he gave described his account of how Democrats blocked his access to “impeachment” committee files.
The House of Representatives, however, is scheduled to vote on an impeachment resolution Thursday, yet members of Congress do not have access to all the documents, to make an informed decision for their vote.
“I just want to give you an update on what is happening up here with the closed-door secretive impeachment hearing that Adam Schiff and Nancy Pelosi are conducting right now,” Rep. Collins said.
“Pursuant to House rules, any member of the House, under normal committee rules, can proceed to ask for documents and review those documents that the committees are dealing with in their investigation,” he explained.
Rep. Collins said that 2 weeks ago, he sent a letter to each of the three House committees: Oversight, Foreign Affairs, and Intelligence. “So today, I wanted to go check on those records, begin this process since we’re moving forward into this inquiry,” he said.
“What was really interesting is… not surprisingly, they wouldn’t let me see the documents. They were very nice about it, but they just wouldn’t let me see it. In fact, the House Oversight Committee said, ‘We’re not gonna even entertain the idea of giving that to us and we’d have to talk to people later.’ I respected that,” Collins expressed. (Continued Below)
“But what was really disturbing is when I went to the Foreign House Committee and the staff director came out and told us we could not see that, and that was part of a rule– the House parliamentarian told them they could not,” Collins said.
“Well, I guess they don’t think my phone works, so I called the House parliamentarian’s office. And the House parliamentarian said, ‘No, we should be getting access to this’. I’m not really sure who they’re listening to or what they’re doing, but again, for the American people, the House Democrats, the majority party, is ‘still trying to impeach this President in the dark’. They’re not letting members have access to what they should have records to and actually be a part of committee process up here,” he stated.
“This is not a new rule. This is not something newly invented, it’s been around for a long time. Any member can go and look at what other committees are doing because it’s part of our job. Just thought you ought to know,” Rep. Collins added. (Continued Below)
Last week, Congressman Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) posted a video on Twitter of the House Rules and Manual book for Congress, where he showed a section in the manual that states, “All committee records (including hearings, data, charts, and files) shall be kept separate and distinct from the congressional office records of the person serving as its chair. Such records shall be the property of the House and each Member, Delegate and the Resident Commissioner shall have access thereto.”
Crenshaw then tried to go see the records pertaining to Schiff’s secret hearings, but he was denied. “They say committee members can see it, but the truth is I spoke to some committee members. And they’ve been sending letters requesting to see it as well — to get an appointment to see it as they’ve been told the rules would allow them. And they’ve been told ‘no’ also,” he proclaimed.
Rep. Doug Collins’ official message:
Both Democrat offices refused, in violation of House Rules. pic.twitter.com/pOkRiAGRKB
— Rep. Doug Collins (@RepDougCollins) October 30, 2019