Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley called out Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer Thursday for lying when the New York Democrat claimed that President Donald Trump was under investigation and Schumer knew otherwise.
Grassley stated that in March, then-FBI Director James Comey briefed ranking member Dianne Feinstein and him on the Russia probe.
“This included telling us who was, and who was not, under investigation,” Grassley stated on the floor of the Senate.
“After that meeting, I publicly called for Mr. Comey to tell the public what he had told us about whether President Trump was under investigation. The public had a right to know. Mr. Comey told me and other Congressional leaders that President Trump was not under investigation. He even told the President himself – repeatedly. But, Mr. Comey didn’t listen to my request for transparency. He didn’t listen to the President’s request. Only months later has the truth finally come out.”
“So the media was wrong. So the Democrats were wrong. So the wild speculation and conspiracy theories ended up harming our country. They played right into Russia’s hands. And how did we all learn about this truth? In President Trump’s letter removing Mr. Comey from office.”
He went on to say, “At first most didn’t believe it. The media scoffed when they wrote what the president said in that letter. They insisted that Mr. Comey would never tell the president that he was not under investigation. Well we learned earlier this month from Mr. Comey himself that he had done exactly that. It wasn’t a surprise to me because Mr. Comey had told me the same thing.”
Grassley then turned his attack toward Democrats who he said knew that Trump was never under investigation but proceeded to tell the public otherwise—particularly Democratic members of the “gang of eight,” which are all the top leaders of both parties in Congress and the top leaders in both parties on the intelligence committees in both chambers.
“I have to note something else here. Mr. Comey didn’t just tell the president Senator Feinstein and me that the president was not under investigation. He had also told the gang of eight. Of course, the gang of eight includes Senate Minority Leader Senator Schumer. But even after Mr. Comey told the gang of eight that the president was not under investigation, the minority leader told the media that the president was under investigation and of course that further help feed media storm– Hysteria.”
Grassley recalled when Schumer stated that the Senate should not confirm then Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch because Trump was under investigation. According to Grassley, Schumer already knew Trump was not under investigation at the time.
Schumer stated on the Senate floor back in March, “You can bet that if the shoe was on the other foot – and a Democratic president was under investigation by the FBI – that Republicans would be howling at the moon about filling a Supreme Court seat in such circumstances. After all, they stopped a president who wasn’t under investigation from filling a seat with nearly a year left in his presidency.”
Grassley slammed Schumer for his remarks saying, “He knew it wasn’t true. So media hysteria and baseless political attacks filled the vacuum left by Mr. Comey’s failure to inform the public to be transparent to be accountable.”
The Iowa Republican added, “The odd thing about it is none of this fiasco had to happen. If Mr. Comey had just been transparent with the public as I urged him to be, it could have been avoided. Unfortunately, now it looks like Mr. Comey and the media might be doing the same thing to Attorney General Sessions.”