UPDATE 3/19/21 6:50 AM EDT VIA AP: The House has dismissed a Republican attempt to remove California Rep. Eric Swalwell from the House intelligence panel over his contact more than six years ago with a suspected Chinese spy who targeted politicians in the United States.
Democrats scuttled the effort from House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, 218-200, after he forced a vote. His resolution against Swalwell cited information, first reported by Axios, that the suspected spy, Christine Fang, came into contact with Swalwell’s campaign as he was first running for Congress in 2012. She also participated in fundraising for his 2014 campaign and helped place an intern in his office, the report said.
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said in a letter to colleagues on Thursday that Swalwell is a “trusted member of our committee” and that he had “acted fully in accordance with his responsibilities” after the 2015 counterintelligence briefing. Schiff said that Republican leaders, including then-House Speaker John Boehner and the then-chairman of the intelligence panel, Republican Rep. Devin Nunes, were briefed on the situation at the time and “expressed no opposition to his continued service on the committee.”
McCarthy requested his own briefing about Swalwell after the Axios report in December. After the briefing, which was also attended by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, McCarthy said he thought Swalwell should be removed.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., planned to unveil a resolution on Thursday that would remove Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., from his seat on the House Intelligence Committee over his reported ties to a Chinese honey-trap spy.
#FoxNews has obtained this Resolution seeking Congressman Eric Swalwell’s removal from the House Intelligence Committee. TBD on timing in terms of when Leader McCarthy will seek to force a vote on the House Floor. pic.twitter.com/FpX7vd9Nz5
— Mike Emanuel 🇺🇸 (@MikeEmanuelFox) March 18, 2021
Swalwell was closely connected to a Chinese agent, Christine Fang, for several years, to the point where federal investigators had to step in and warn Swalwell about her.
Despite knowing this, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., recently reappointed Swalwell to the Intelligence Committee, where lawmakers are briefed regularly on confidential information pertaining to national security.
Swalwell wouldn’t even be able to get security clearance “in the private sector” because of his relationship with Fang, McCarthy argued, so he shouldn’t have a seat on the Intelligence Committee either.
“These are Chinese spies that go down to the level of a mayor, they court and help a city council member become a congressman, this congressman now gets on the Intel Committee, they are only selected from the Intel Committee by the leaders of their party, meaning Nancy Pelosi,” McCarthy told Fox News in December.
Several other House Republicans have already signaled support for the resolution.
When the report about Swalwell’s relationship with Fang first broke, more than a dozen GOP members asked Pelosi to hold him accountable for withholding information about Fang.
“Rep. Swalwell kept this information to himself while repeatedly using his position on House Intelligence Committee to peddle damaging and baseless conspiracies about President Donald Trump’s unproven ties to Russia for years and still refuses to comment fully on the extent and nature of his relationship with the Chinese Communist Party spy exposed in Axios’ bombshell report,” they wrote in a letter to Pelosi.
Swalwell glibly slammed the resolution as “the new McCarthyism,” a reference to Sen. Joseph McCarthy, R-Wisc., who led Congressional inquiries into the communist infiltration of American institutions during the 1950s.
Meet the New McCarthyism. Multiple sentences in resolution state “Swalwell has not denied…” Yet fails to include multiple FBI statements of “no wrongdoing” and did nothing but “cooperate.” All of this to deflect from @GOPLeader’s support for QAnon. https://t.co/2bsU72ev8H
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) March 18, 2021
That McCarthy was later condemned for his “Red scare” alarmism during the Cold War and suppression of free speech, including Hollywood blacklists.
However, the recent leftward, anti-democratic lurch among Democrats has invited a reassessment of his legacy, noting that his paranoia may, in fact, have been justified.