Adam Schiff Crosses a Dark Line By Publishing Phone Records

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It remains to be seen if Rep. Adam Schiff crossed a legal line when he published the phone records of a journalist, a colleague on the House Intelligence Committee, an NSC aide, and President Trump’s personal attorneys. We’re sure there are people with more constitutional scholarship than us looking into that matter right now. What is certain is that Schiff went way beyond the ethical line when he targeted these people with what amounts to a partisan intrusion on their privacy. It was, as victim Devin Nunes said, a “gross abuse of power.”

In Schiff’s report on the Intelligence Committee’s impeachment inquiry, he included records – subpoenaed from AT&T and Verizon – showing phone calls by Fox News host Sean Hannity, Nunes, journalist John Solomon, lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Jay Sekulow, indicted Giuliani associate Lev Parnas, lawyer Victoria Toensing, and National Security Aid Kash Patel, among others. While none of these records include the content of the calls, Schiff was clearly trying to paint a conspiratorial picture of Trump’s allies whispering about Ukrainian deeds behind the veil of secrecy. Not only was this a failed attempt to suggest criminality (much like the rest of the impeachment report), it was a violation of ethics, privacy, good governance, and perhaps even the First Amendment.

In a text message to Byron York of the Washington Examiner, Giuliani said, “Schiff, Pelosi, Nadler have trashed the U.S. Constitution and are enabled by a pathetic fawning press. They have proceeded without respect for attorney-client privilege, including threats of contempt and imprisonment. They have violated every conceivable due process right….counsel, confrontation, cross-examination, compulsory process. They have conducted secret hearings leaking selectively and deceptively. This Pelosi Congress will be remembered for wholesale trashing of the U.S. Constitution to satisfy the politically-driven irrational hatred of a president who challenges their fantasies that they are intellectually and morally superior to the rest of us.”

Nunes, too, was furious about this invasion of his privacy. In a statement, he said: “The Democrats’ impeachment charade is flailing, and desperate people do desperate things. So Schiff suddenly published phone records of myself, current and former Republican staff members, and a journalist whose reporting he doesn’t like. It’s a gross abuse of power for a congressman to go after his political opponents, staffers, and reporters in this way, but it’s characteristic of the way Schiff has run this entire show. He’s going to need a long rehabilitation period when this is over.”

That phrase – “desperate people do desperate things” – basically sums up what happened here. The Democrats are flailing in their efforts to convince the public that President Trump needs to be impeached. Knowing that their 2020 prospects are growing dimmer by the day, they’re now trying to throw everything but the kitchen sink at the White House. The desperation is palpable, and the American people can smell it a mile away.

You have to think, at this point, that Nancy Pelosi wishes she could go back in time and stick to her guns. She let herself get dragged down this impeachment path by rabid lawmakers who know they could do anything and still get reelected in their districts. But while Schiff and the rest of his goons are out looking for their star-making moment, the Democratic Party is rotting from the inside out.

Oh well, they can’t say they weren’t warned.