If members of Congress have leaked classified information to the media, they should be prosecuted, former House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz said on “Outnumbered” Monday.
On Sunday, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe defended his decision to scale back in-person briefings to lawmakers on election security, telling “Sunday Morning Futures” that “within minutes of one of those briefings ending, a number of members of Congress went to a number of different outlets and leaked classified information for political purposes to create a narrative that simply isn’t true, that somehow Russia is a greater national security threat than China.”
In response, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told CNN Sunday that the Trump administration is “hid[ing] behind documents or withhold[ing] documents” and “concealing the truth [and] concealing Russians are again intervening to help the president in his reelection.”
“I think John Ratcliffe is actually right, he’s lived it firsthand,” said Chaffetz, now a Fox News contributor. “He was on the [House] intelligence committee, he’s now the director of national intelligence.”
“What Adam Schiff just said in that clip saying they were going to withhold documents, that’s not what John Ratcliffe said. He said he would provide them in writing, that’s what they’ve done,” Chaffetz added. “I got to tell you, the only part [where] I would disagree with my friends John Ratcliffe and the DNI, in general, is if they have direct information about the leaking of classified information, then prosecute them.
“File a complaint at the Department of Justice and prosecute Adam Schiff,” he insisted. “I have seen it, I have heard it, I have listened to everybody complain about how he leaks classified information. Then prosecute him.
“I don’t understand why he has a security clearance,” Chaffetz added. “Nobody is able to describe that to me, because he has done this repeatedly, misrepresented information. It is documented, and he should lose his security clearance. But if he’s done something illegal, like leaked classified information, prosecute him.”