Buttigieg on Republican SCIF crash: 'This behavior is an embarrassment'

Democratic presidential candidate Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegBiden leads Sanders by single digits in South Carolina: poll 2020 Democratic candidates support Las Vegas casino workers on debate day What to watch in the debate tonight MORE said the storming of a closed-door impeachment inquiry hearing by conservative House Republicans on Wednesday is "an embarrassment."


"I used work in a SCIF [Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility], as a military officer," the South Bend, Ind., mayor tweeted Wednesday afternoon.

"The importance of keeping it secure (i.e. from cell phone signals) was drilled into us so deeply that I’d have bad dreams about accidentally leaving my phone in the pocket of my uniform," he added. "This behavior is an embarrassment."

SCIFs are commonly used in Washington to brief lawmakers and other officials on highly sensitive information. In the interest of national security, cellphones or mobile devices of any kind are strictly prohibited inside.

However, when House Republicans, led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), stormed the SCIF, many of them brought their phones with them.

Rep. Alex MooneyAlexander (Alex) Xavier MooneyOvernight Defense: House passes bills to rein in Trump on Iran | Pentagon seeks Iraq's permission to deploy missile defenses | Roberts refuses to read Paul question on whistleblower during impeachment trial Here are the lawmakers who defected on Iran legislation House votes to rein in Trump's military authority MORE (R. W.Va.) even made a phone call and then uploaded the audio online.

Proceedings were delayed more than five hours because of the incident, and the GOP lawmakers received heavy criticism from their Democratic counterparts.

"This is what happens when people elect members more interested in media hits than the protection of our national security," Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarOmar endorses progressive Georgia Democrat running for House seat Tlaib says she held Omar's hand during 'triggering' moments at Trump's State of the Union speech Key House Democrat says Perez must go: 'He doesn't lead on anything' MORE (D-Minn.) tweeted.