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Leon Panetta: Nunes' Memo Damages Credibility of House Intel Comm.

Image: Leon Panetta: Nunes' Memo Damages Credibility of House Intel Comm.
Leon Panetta (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By    |   Sunday, 04 February 2018 01:22 PM

Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Sunday a House Intelligence Committee’s GOP-authored memo on the FBI’s alleged surveillance abuses will hurt the credibility of a panel “critical to our national security.”

In an interview on “Fox News Sunday,” Panetta decried partisan influence on a panel that has the responsibility to provide oversight of the intelligence community.

The remarks start at about the 5-minute mark.

“That worries me, because it damages, frankly, an institution that is critical to our national security,” Panetta said. “The House Intelligence Committee, just like the Senate Intelligence Committee, was established in order to provide bipartisan oversight of a very highly sensitive unclassified intelligence information to make sure that our intelligence agencies, our law enforcement agencies were doing what is necessary to do, but pursuant to our Constitution and to the rule of law.”

“When that bipartisanship breaks down and when intelligence starts to be used on a partisan basis to score political points, I think that really undermines the way the intelligence committee is supposed to function, and it's going to hurt our ability to be able to have the kind of oversight we need in our democracy.”

Panetta also said he thinks President Donald Trump should not move to fire either Russia investigation special counsel Robert Mueller, or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller.

"If he tries to go after them and tries to somehow appear to be obstructing the process that’s involved in this investigation, he’s going to hurt himself,” Panetta said. “But more importantly, he’s going to hurt the country."

Also on “Fox News Sunday,” Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., accused Republicans on the intel panel of not looking at the evidence in its own investigation into Russian meddling and possible collusion.

“There's not a willingness to look at the evidence,” he said. “They assert that there is no collusion, but there's no interest or willingness to understand the evidence in this case.”

“The evidence that we've seen with the limited subpoena power we have is a deep willingness that exists around the Trump campaign, in the Trump family and the Trump businesses to work with the Russians and to receive information on Hillary Clinton.”

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Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Sunday a House Intelligence Committee's GOP-authored memo on the FBI's alleged surveillance abuses will hurt the credibility of a panel "critical to our national security."In an interview on "Fox News Sunday," Panetta decried...
leon panetta, nunes memo, partisian, damages, intel committees
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2018-22-04
Sunday, 04 February 2018 01:22 PM
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