GOP announces members who will serve on House intel panel

GOP announces members who will serve on House intel panel
© Greg Nash

Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyOvernight Energy: McConnell tees up vote on Green New Deal | Centrist Dems pitch alternative to plan | House Republican likens Green New Deal to genocide | Coca-Cola reveals it uses 3M tons of plastic every year House GOP lawmaker says Green New Deal is like genocide GOP lawmakers: House leaders already jockeying for leadership contests MORE (R-Calif.) on Wednesday announced the names of Republican members who will serve on the House Intelligence Committee, which will allow the panel to become constituted and be ready for business.

The new GOP addition to the committee is Rep. John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeHouse panel approves controversial changes to Violence Against Women Act Former Texas GOP Rep. Ralph Hall dead at 95 House intel interrogates Cohen for eight hours MORE (R-Texas), a former federal prosecutor who also serves on the House Judiciary Committee. 

"My appointment to HPSCI will allow me to bring my background as a former U.S. Attorney and federal terrorism prosecutor to oversight that encompasses the broader intelligence community of our U.S. government and military," Ratcliffe said in a statement, referring to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

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Rep. Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesEx-House Intel chair: Intel panel is wrong forum to investigate Trump's finances Nunes warns of the 'straw police' in California Koch-backed group pushes for new limits on Trump's tariff authority MORE (D-Calif.), who previously chaired the committee, will stay on as ranking member.

And GOP Reps. Mike ConawayKenneth (Mike) Michael ConawayHillicon Valley: Tech tries to stop spread of New Zealand shooting video | Booker says big tech must do more to combat online hate | US allies drawn into Huawei fight | O'Rourke not 'proud' of being in hacking group as teenager Escalating battle with Huawei ensnares US allies Overnight Energy: Solar installations dropped in 2018 | UN report says rising Arctic temperatures 'locked in' | Fiat Chrysler to recall 850K vehicles MORE (Texas), Brad WenstrupBrad Robert WenstrupKey doctors group faces political risks on guns GOP announces members who will serve on House intel panel CNN host pushes back on GOP lawmaker’s claim: ‘Hold on, diseases are not pouring into the country' MORE (Ohio), Mike TurnerMichael Ray TurnerDon’t look for House GOP to defy Trump on border wall Overnight Defense: Trump declares border emergency | .6B in military construction funds to be used for wall | Trump believes Obama would have started war with North Korea | Pentagon delivers aid for Venezuelan migrants Dems slam EPA plan for fighting drinking water contaminants MORE (Ohio), Chris StewartChristopher (Chris) Douglas StewartDems fear Trump is looking at presidential pardons House passes series of measures hitting Russia, Putin House Intel obtains new info, documents from Cohen in 8-hour interview MORE (Utah), Rick CrawfordRichard (Rick) CrawfordThe 23 Republicans who voted against the anti-hate resolution House passes anti-hate measure amid Dem tensions GOP announces members who will serve on House intel panel MORE (Ark.), Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikThe 25 Republicans who defied Trump on emergency declaration 13 House Republicans who bucked Trump on emergency declaration House votes to overturn Trump's emergency declaration MORE (R-N.Y.), and Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdThe 25 Republicans who defied Trump on emergency declaration The 31 Trump districts that will determine the next House majority Hillicon Valley: US threatens to hold intel from Germany over Huawei | GOP senator targets FTC over privacy | Bipartisan bill would beef up 'internet of things' security | Privacy groups seize on suspended NSA program | Tesla makes U-turn MORE (Texas) will all also remain on the committee.

Conaway, who led the panel's Russia probe after Nunes stepped aside, had to receive a waiver in order to continue serving on the committee after surpassing the panel's time limit set for serving members.

Rep. Pete KingPeter (Pete) Thomas KingThe 23 Republicans who voted against the anti-hate resolution House passes second major gun bill Eight Republicans side with Dems on background checks for gun sales MORE (R-N.Y.) will no longer serve on the panel. He, too, would have required a waiver in order to remain on the panel.

The committee is expected to be ground zero for investigations into President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoint Chiefs chairman denies report that US is planning to keep 1K troops in Syria Kansas Department of Transportation calls Trump 'delusional communist' on Twitter Trump has privately voiced skepticism about driverless cars: report MORE's possible ties to Russia as well as the president's business dealings.

The committee can now organize and become fully constituted ahead of the panel's closed-door meeting next Friday with President Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen. 

Democrats had named the new Democratic members to the high-profile panel nearly two weeks ago. They include Reps. Val DemingsValdez (Val) Venita DemingsHouse intel interrogates Cohen for eight hours Gun violence in America: This carnage must stop Five takeaways from McCabe’s allegations against Trump MORE (Fla.), Raja Krishnamoorthi (Ill.), Sean Patrick Maloney (N.Y.), and Peter WelchPeter Francis WelchDivisions emerge over House drug price bills Trump CFO Weisselberg emerges as key person of interest for Dems Cohen claims batter Trump MORE (Vt.).

Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffDems fear Trump is looking at presidential pardons The Hill's Morning Report — Trump readies first veto after latest clash with Senate GOP The real reason Nancy Pelosi has backed away from impeachment MORE (D-Calif.), the chairman of the high-profile panel, indicated that those two weeks without GOP members have made an impact.

“We had a briefing today on hot spots around the world, classified briefing and none of the Republican members were there. So they’re also cutting themselves off from good information,” Schiff told CNN and The Hill on Wednesday.

But before either side announced new members, lawmakers quietly grumbled that the shutdown had delayed House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiMulvaney: Military projects impacted by wall funding haven't been decided yet Left-wing Dems in minority with new approach to spending Julian Castro hints at brother Joaquin's Senate run MORE (D-Calif.) and McCarthy's ability to suss out who would serve on which committee.

The first few weeks, according to a Democratic committee source, will be orientation.

The source told The Hill that the panel will prioritize Russia, authoritarianism, and "vigorous oversight" of the Trump administration, but noted that the roadmap of which investigatory actions to pursue, and in which order, is still being decided.

The source also said the subcommittees for intelligence will be different than under Nunes.

There will be four subcommittees that will oversee: technological problems like artificial intelligence; counter-intelligence, proliferation, and terrorism; intelligence management and reform, including security clearances; and then finally, defense and war fighter support. 

Schiff, who has stated that the panel's first order of business will be to vote to release transcripts from the panel's witness interviews to special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE. He indicated that will be done once the committee is up and running.

"We will be adopting rules and doing some other things, so whether that will be the first meeting or the second meeting, I cannot say," Schiff said.