Though it was just months ago, it feels like ages have passed since House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) secretly obtained and subsequently published the private phone records of a number of Americans — including fellow members of Congress — as part of his quixotic effort to impeach the president. But even as the coronavirus pandemic dominates cable news airwaves, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) isn’t backing down from getting retribution.
Nunes, the ranking member on Schiff’s Intel panel, made it clear in a recent interview that he is still open to any and every legal measure available to bring Schiff to justice. “We’re going to look at all the legal remedies that we can take,” Nunes told host Larry O’Connor on a Wednesday podcast, according to the Washington Examiner.
Exploring legal options
It was O’Connor who first broached the subject of Schiff, who has been accused of subpoenaing and publishing the private phone records of Nunes, two of President Donald Trump’s attorneys, and a pair of conservative media figures, among others, in what Nunes had described at the time as a “gross abuse of power,” the Examiner reported.
Nunes said Wednesday that he hasn’t made a decision yet on how he’ll respond to Schiff’s actions — but he certainly isn’t just letting it go.
“We’re continuing to explore all of our legal options,” the congressman told O’Connor. “Clearly, what the Democrats did would be illegal for the executive e branch of government or your local police department to do — to go grab phone records and make up fake news stories and release not just my phone records but [that of] many other Americans, my staffers.”
Nunes went on to call the move “reverse targeting” by Schiff and his caucus. “They don’t like me, they hate me,” Nunes said. “They don’t like Rudy Giuliani, they hate him. They don’t like my staff, they hate my staff.”
The congressman lamented that Democrats convinced the “fake news” to “take the story and run with it.”
“I’m glad they had fun with it, but their impeachment hoax failed, and now we’re going to look at all of the legal remedies that we can take,” Nunes concluded.
Holding Schiff accountable
As the Washington Examiner noted, Nunes is far from all bark and no bite. “In recent months,” the Examiner reported Saturday, Nunes “has sued outlets such as CNN and the Washington Post for stories related to Ukraine and Russia.”
Now, it looks like he’s prepared to take similar action against Schiff.
“I’m in California, so for sure, state law, you cannot release somebody’s phone records. So, for sure, that right has been violated,” Nunes said of the situation in early December, according to Fox News. “But we also have to look at the constitutional aspects of this, and do all the members of Congress have a right to privacy, and can just one member, because he doesn’t like someone and he’s a political opponent of someone, can that member just subpoena records and then release just to embarrass or to create a distraction or to build whatever fantasy-land narrative that they continue to build?”
If laws were indeed broken, as Nunes contends, then Schiff deserves to be held accountable. Democrats like the Intel chairman have been untouchable by the scales of justice for far too long.