Gowdy: House Intel panel should release all transcripts from Russia probe

Gowdy: House Intel panel should release all transcripts from Russia probe
© Anna Moneymaker

Rep. Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdySunday shows preview: As states loosen social distancing restrictions, lawmakers address dwindling state budgets John Ratcliffe is the right choice for director of national intelligence — and for America Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers gear up for another week fighting the coronavirus, seek to curb fallout MORE (R-S.C.), a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said this week that the GOP-controlled panel should release every interview transcript from its concluded Russia investigation.

“There is something that has not been released that I think would be beneficial for the public to see — and that would be all of the transcripts from all of the [House Intelligence Committee] interviews,” Gowdy told The Hill on Wednesday.

ADVERTISEMENT
“There are no national security implications there,” he added. “There are no sources and methods there.”

Gowdy’s remarks echo calls from House Intelligence Democrats, who have pressed for the release of witness interview transcripts from the committee’s yearlong Russia investigation. The panel’s probe ended earlier this year, with Republicans saying they found no evidence of collusion between Moscow and President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump marks 'very sad milestone' of 100K coronavirus deaths DOJ: George Floyd death investigation a 'top priority' Lifting our voices — and votes MORE’s campaign.

A spokesman for House Intelligence Chairman Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesSunday shows preview: States begin to reopen even as some areas in US see case counts increase Pass the Primary Care Enhancement Act Trump campaign launches new fundraising program with House Republicans MORE (R-Calif.) declined to comment on Gowdy's remarks.

GOP and Democratic lawmakers had supported plans to release the transcripts from the dozens of witnesses interviewed. But that was before Republicans announced in the spring that they would be winding down their probe.

Republicans cited concerns that making the interviews public could have long-term consequences on their ability to compel witnesses to testify in future investigations.

“We may not be able to do that, turns out,” Rep. Mike ConawayKenneth (Mike) Michael ConawayLive coverage: Democrats, Republicans seek to win PR battle in final House impeachment hearing Laughter erupts at hearing after Democrat fires back: Trump 'has 5 Pinocchios on a daily basis' Live coverage: Schiff closes with speech highlighting claims of Trump's corruption MORE (R-Texas), the top Republican leading the investigation, told Bloomberg News in March, shortly before the investigation was brought to a close.

Earlier that month, Conaway had told reporters that he would “absolutely” support releasing the transcripts.

“The majority has said they support making these transcripts public,” said Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffPelosi pulls vote on FISA bill after Trump veto threat Hillicon Valley: House FISA bill in jeopardy | Democrats drop controversial surveillance measure | GOP working on legislation to strip Twitter of federal liability protections Democrats drop controversial surveillance amendment MORE (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the committee, at the time. “We will put to the test of whether they really do.”

Schiff indicated to The Hill this week that he plans to reignite a full-blown Russia probe if Democrats win control of the House in November.

While he said his priority would be to investigate allegations of whether Russians laundered money through the Trump Organization, the transcripts could also become another matter for Democrats to pursue.

The latest FiveThirtyEight forecast says Democrats have an 83 percent chance of winning control of the chamber in the midterm elections.

--Updated at 11:29 a.m.