Rep. Tim Burchett declared on Newsmax that Army Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, could be in violation of the Logan Act.
Appearing Wednesday on "American Agenda," the Tennessee Republican asserted: "I believe he's violated the Logan Act, which is a felony, and he could do some serious [prison] time. And if it's true, also, he should be court-martialed, because he is definitely going around our president.
''Maybe he and Pelosi and the rest are negotiating things they weren't allowed to do, but what we're going to have to do is get to a hearing."
Burchett pointed out, however, that to get a hearing, representatives must go through House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. But garnering a hearing from Pelosi, whose beliefs regarding the situation differ from Burchett's, would be a "tough pill for the Democrats to swallow."
According to Congressional Research Service, the Logan Act is an 18th-century law that "makes it illegal for U.S. citizens to engage in unauthorized diplomacy with foreign countries with intent to 'influence the measures or conduct' of a foreign government or to 'defeat the measures of the United States.'"
According to Business Insider, Milley was referenced in Bob Woodward and Robert Costa's new book, "Peril." The Washington Post reporters' book alleges that Milley made two secret phone calls to China's People's Liberation Army Gen. Li Zuocheng.
Milley reportedly told the Chinese general that he was concerned about former President Donald Trump's mental state and that he might spark a war with China.
Milley tried to assure Li on their first phone call that the relationship between "the American government [and China] is stable and everything is going to be okay.
For the second call, Milley reportedly told Li that "we are 100 percent steady. Everything's fine. But democracy can be sloppy sometimes."
On Wednesday, Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said that it's "not only common, it's expected that a chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff would continue to have counterpart conversations," adding that "frequent communication with countries like Russia and China is not atypical."
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