Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) is facing renewed scrutiny after the release of special counsel John Durham’s report on the Department of Justice’s investigation into alleged Trump-Russia collusion.
The damning report raises questions about Schiff’s conduct while he served as the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee. In 2017, he was privy to classified information not released to the public and claimed that the evidence against President Donald Trump was “damning”.
“We continue to fill in all of the missing pieces, but we do know this: the Russians offered help, the campaign accepted help, the Russians gave help, and the president made full use of that help. And that is pretty damning whether it is proof beyond a reasonable doubt of conspiracy or not,” Schiff said during a December 2017 appearance on CNN.
Durham’s report has debunked Schiff’s claims, stating that the FBI opened up the investigation into Trump, code-named “Crossfire Hurricane”, “during the presidential election season based on raw, unanalyzed, and uncorroborated intelligence.” The FBI’s treatment of Trump differed starkly from its treatment of the Clinton campaign, according to Durham.
“Unlike the FBI’s opening of a full investigation of unknown members of the Trump campaign based on raw, uncorroborated information, in this separate matter involving a purported Clinton campaign plan, the FBI never opened any type of inquiry, issued any taskings, employed any analytical personnel, or produced any analytical products in connection with the information,” Durham’s report says.
The report also reveals that the FBI’s investigation rested significantly on “investigative leads provided or funded (directly or indirectly) by Trump’s political opponents,” which the bureau pursued without “adequately examin[ing] or question[ing] these materials and the motivations of those providing them.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) ended Schiff’s stint on the intelligence committee earlier this year, saying that Schiff had used his position on the committee to lie to the American public “again and again.”
Schiff’s conduct has been widely condemned by Republicans, who have called for an investigation into his misleading statements. However, Democrats have largely remained silent, with few speaking out in defense of the California Congressman.
It remains to be seen whether Schiff will face any consequences for his conduct. In the meantime, the release of Durham’s report has done little to ease the suspicions surrounding the Congressman’s behavior during the probe into alleged Trump-Russia collusion.