Schumer: Trump officials should testify on Iran this week
© Greg Nash
 
"I am calling on acting Defense Secretary [Patrick] Shanahan and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. [Joseph] Dunford to come testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee in an open setting before the end of the week," Schumer said from the Senate floor.
 
Schumer's comments are an escalation from Wednesday morning, when he urged the administration to hold open- and closed-door briefings but did not specify who should testify and did not include the end-of-the-week deadline. 
 
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The New York Times reported earlier this week that the Pentagon has presented a plan to send 120,000 troops to the Middle East if Iran attacks U.S. forces. Trump dismissed the report but then added, "Would I do that? Absolutely."
 
The State Department also told all nonemergency employees to leave Iraq amid escalating tensions in the region.
 
 
Schumer added on Wednesday afternoon that "the American people deserve to know what's going on here."
 
"The hearings that are done in secret do not inform the American people of what's going on, and they are entitled to know. Because the lessons of history teach us that when thing are done in secret, behind closed doors, mistakes can be made and momentum built for a course of action that the nation ultimately regrets," Schumer said.
 
He added that "if the president and Republicans in Congress are planning to take the United States into a conflict, even a war in the Middle East, the American people deserve to know that and they deserve to know why."