House Intelligence Democrats: If This Investigation Isn’t Serious, We’ll Walk Away (And We Might Want Trump's Tax Returns)

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Mar 12, 2017 8:30 AM
House Intelligence Democrats: If This Investigation Isn’t Serious, We’ll Walk Away (And We Might Want Trump's Tax Returns)

With the scope of the investigation pretty much done, the House Intelligence Committee is set to hold their first hearings on possible Russian interference later this month. The date is set for March 20. This could be a bumpy ride, as a rather intense streak of Russophobia has struck the Democratic Party. Still sour and shocked over their 2016 loss to Donald Trump, the Left seems almost obsessed that a Russian conspiracy exists, despite there being zero evidence to substantiate such an explosive claim.

Even Senate Democrats on their Intelligence Committee admit that no evidence may be found pointing to collusion between Russian intelligence and the Trump campaign. In the meantime, they’ll just try to paint every meeting a Trump aide had with a Russian as proof that some coordination might have occurred, which is rather ridiculous since meetings with foreign officials isn’t unheard of, nor is it illegal, especially when it comes to someone who could be the next president. With subpoenas over witnesses and documents expected to be a fight, Democrats on the committee warned they would walk away from the investigation if it become a "dog-and-pony show" (via NYT):

They agreed just a week ago to the terms of a House Intelligence Committee investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. But now some of the panel’s Democrats are warning that they may pull their support for the inquiry if it becomes mired in party-line politics.

When that might happen is unclear, and Democrats know that the current moment of even tentative comity on the Republican-controlled panel may offer their best chance for scrutinizing links between people close to President Trump and Russian officials.

Still, Democrats are bracing for fights over subpoenaing witnesses and documents — including, possibly, Mr. Trump’s tax returns — since Republicans have balked at an outside, independent inquiry into what intelligence officials say was an unprecedented intrusion into an American election by a foreign power.

“I’m not going to be part of a dog-and-pony show that is not a serious effort to do an investigation because this is really serious,” said Representative Jackie Speier, Democrat of California. “If it’s not a legitimate and comprehensive and in-depth investigation, why would we be party to it?”

Ms. Speier said the committee’s Democrats — all nine of whom were interviewed by The New York Times — would not hesitate, “under certain circumstances,” to pull their support.

So, if Trump doesn’t produce his tax returns, we should expect a Democratic walk out? The fireworks begin soon.