Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) officially announced his motion to censure House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff for a "whole host of misconduct" related to the impeachment inquiry on Wednesday. He embellished parts of the phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Zelensky during a congressional hearing, and is now barring minority members of Congress from attending closed door testimony.
The House rules "are designed to protect the voice and rights of the minority," Biggs noted on Wednesday. Instead, as he explained on Twitter, Schiff has chosen to hold closed door hearings "in his quest to impeach the president." The Democrats have yet to even hold a formal impeachment inquiry vote, which has been the procedure in the past.
"They don't want due process for this president," Biggs assessed.
"That's why we have to introduce this motion to censure," he said. "No more secret proceedings. No more Soviet style proceedings."
Biggs's colleagues were happy to join his effort.
Proud to cosponsor. @RepAdamSchiff has misled the public and turned one of Congress’ most solemn constitutional duties into a cheap political stunt. Impeachment should be conducted in the open, not in a back room. The American people deserve to know and judge for themselves. https://t.co/yQt6PEfEkj— Rep. Mark Green (@RepMarkGreen) October 16, 2019
Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC) said he will sign the censure because the House's priorities have gone out the window.
There's no legislation to vote on this week, Norman regretted. In fact, they are "basically not doing anything other than listening to secret testimony about impeaching this president, which was duly elected in 2016."
Where are the votes on lowering prescription drug costs, or the USMCA, or securing our border, or the budget, he wondered.
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) fumed after having been kicked out of one of those closed door hearings by Schiff because he's not a member of the three committees leading the impeachment inquiry. Then, on Wednesday, many Republicans were prevented from seeing the transcript from former Envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker’s testimony last week. Biggs also surmised that the Democrats are afraid of letting Republicans subpoena witnesses.
"We can't represent the American people, if we can't see what's going on."
There are 150 more co-signers for Biggs's censure where these came from, according to the author.