After an investigation so complete it required Devin Nunes to make not one, or two, but three insane press-conferences while derailing the process for weeks so he could brief the White House on a rumor provided to him by the White House, the House Intelligence Committee is about to call it quits.
Senior Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee tell NBC News that they hope and expect to draw their year-long investigation to an end in the coming weeks, saying they have largely completed all interviews relevant to the narrow scope of inquiry Democrats had agreed to last spring.
Yep. They’ve talked to everyone. About everything. Found nothing. So … time to move along.
Though Democrats say they have requested as many as 30 additional interviews with new witnesses, none have been scheduled beyond the end of this month.
And best of all, new leader of the investigation in the House and man most likely to consume your pet hamster, Trey Gowdy, is up front about the fact that their investigation has been both cursory and overtly pointless.
“There is not a single soul with an open mind who is waiting on the House of Representatives’ Russia investigation to unlock the mysteries of the world for them,” Gowdy said.
According to Gowdy, the Mueller investigation is the real investigation — which is why Republicans want to stop it.
Gowdy’s partners in running the House committee are equally positive that they want this thing over with.
“We’re not a criminal investigation,” Rooney said in an interview.
Which … is a good thing, because the way the investigation has been done is itself criminal.
“I’m increasingly concerned that pressure from outside the building from the president, from Steve Bannon and their allies to shut us down is having its effect,” said Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the ranking Democrat on the Intelligence Committee. “We have a lot of investigative work to do. If they do shut the [investigation] down it will represent a breach of the promise that the Republicans made to follow the facts wherever they lead.”
But it turns out there was absolutely no problem at all … which is why four members of Trump’s campaign team have already been indicted, with two of those indictments as part of deals to testify against others. That they completely missed all this does lend some authority to the idea that the House investigation was not accomplishing anything.
Instead of continuing to deal with a Russian threat to democracy that Trump has done not one thing to address, Republicans are intent on getting onto the real problem — an eight-year-old deal which resulted in not one ounce of uranium leaving the country, but which allows them to call both Hillary Clinton and Robert Mueller as witnesses.
Rep. Devin Nunes said at a news conference that his committee and the House oversight committee are launching the joint investigation into the uranium deal, whether there was an FBI investigation into the matter and, if so, why Congress wasn’t informed.
Clearing the books for this critical investigation will certainly require Republicans to drop that little election interference, selling out the nation for massive real estate deals, thing. And, of course, they will remember that investigations have to have “an extremely narrow scope” and that they’re “not a criminal investigation.”
“We’re not going to jump to any conclusions at this time,” Nunes said. “But one of the things that you know that we’re concerned about is whether or not there was an FBI investigation. Was there a DOJ investigation? And if so, why was Congress not informed of this matter? So that will be the start of the probe.”
Surprise. There was an FBI investigation. There was a DOJ investigation. It’s understandable that Nunes might have missed it, because all they did was provide reports of their results — which including rooting out and convicting a Russia-related transportation firm, and issuing a few press releases.
But the Uranium One investigation, which promises to be even more pointless than the House investigation into Trump–Russia, will give them a way to muck up Robert Mueller’s schedule, and an excuse to say that Mueller shouldn’t be leading one investigation “while he’s the subject of another.” Many, many times.
Which will do fine. Until they find a way to do worse.