Last spring, the Justice Department under Attorney General Jeff Sessions appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller to investigate claims of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential campaign. The FBI had been investigating these claims, but the Justice Department brought in special counsel Mueller to conduct an independent investigation. Meanwhile, the House Intelligence Committee continued its own investigations into the matter.
Recently, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes from California allowed all members of the House of Representatives access to a classified memo that originated within his committee. I have visited the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) in the U.S. Capitol and read this memo detailing possible collusion. I concluded that nothing in these documents is damaging to our nation’s intelligence community, so I believe the American people have a right to read these documents for themselves.
The American public deserves the right to this information and to draw their own conclusions – rather than what I tell them, or what the media tells them. I believe that transparency and accountability are key to any functioning democracy. Now is the time to bring these findings into the light.
Unfortunately, this isn’t something that President Trump and the Republican members of the House can release on our own. First, the House Intelligence Committee must vote to declassify the memo and release it from its committee. Then, the president has five days to object to declassifying the information. If the president objects, the committee can send the memo to the full House, which would then debate on the matter privately, before holding a vote on the House floor.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and her army of Washington liberals say they always advocate for transparency. They say they always support giving Americans the right to take matters into their own hands and draw their own conclusions based on the evidence in front of them. However, on this topic, they’ve gone silent. The Members of the House who consistently call for transparency in government, may be the ones obstructing their own principles if they don’t follow their constituents’ calls to release the memo. I’ll continue to urge my colleagues in the House to vote in favor of releasing the memo, because I believe all Americans have the right to know.