A group of House Republicans stormed a closed-door meeting on Wednesday to demand more transparency in the Democratic-lead impeachment inquiry into President Trump.
Led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), the room the Republicans entered was a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) inside the Capitol building, where House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) was about to give his opening statement for Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary Laura Cooper's testimony.
Rep. Fred Keller (R-PA) said when the members, who do not sit on one of the three committees leading the inquiry, entered, Schiff left the room. The hearing was halted as Republicans tried to hash out a deal before some were made to leave the area.
"GOP members tried to get in to view documents, staff tried to prevent them, but Reps. Gaetz, [Andy] Biggs, and [Paul] Gosar went past staff, and the rest of the members followed into the room. Shouting commenced, and members chanted, 'Shame!' They were then made to leave, denied access to transcripts," a source who was at the incident told Townhall.
CNN reported Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL) shouted at Schiff, with Rep. Val Demings (D-FL) shouting back at Byrne.
WATCH: here's the video of when 2 dozen GOP members, led by @mattgaetz entered the secure hearing room (SCIF) to interrupt witness testimony in the #ImpeachmentInquiry as they demand access, despite not being committee members. They're complaining it's a "Soviet-style process". pic.twitter.com/8KddYz3r9D— Scott Thuman (@ScottThuman) October 23, 2019
I joined @RepMattGaetz and dozens of other @HouseGOP colleagues for a press conference to demand @RepAdamSchiff open the “impeachment inquiry” hearings and be transparent. We then went to the SCIF and the @HouseDemocrats ended the hearing and left the room. My reaction ?????? pic.twitter.com/1WpF6CzF24— Congressman Fred Keller (@RepFredKeller) October 23, 2019
Adam Schiff just SHUT DOWN his secret underground impeachment hearing after I led a group of Republicans into the room. Now he's threatening me with an Ethics complaint! I'm on the Armed Services Cmte but being blocked from the Dept. Asst. SecDef's testimony. This is a SHAM! pic.twitter.com/6qUMerxENC— Rep. Bradley Byrne (@RepByrne) October 23, 2019
Since the room is supposed to be a secure facility for classified hearings, cell phones are not allowed inside, but Republicans still brought their phones into the room.