07.07.16

Democrat Schiff slams calls to deny Clinton classified briefings (Politico)

Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, ripped Republicans for calling on intelligence officials to deny Hillary Clinton briefings as a consequence of the FBI investigation into her emails, calling the demand "as predictable as it is absurd."

"Providing an intelligence briefing for the party nominees is a sound practice, and is designed both to prepare the candidates for office and to help them avoid representations during the campaign that may adversely affect the national interest before or after election," Schiff, a Clinton supporter, said in a statement released Thursday.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) sent a letter to Director of National Intelligence James Clapper on Wednesday demanding that the FBI's findings carry the need for appropriate actions.

"Given the FBI's findings, denying Clinton access to classified information certainly constitutes appropriate sanctions," Ryan wrote in his letter. "There is no legal requirement for you to provide Secretary Clinton with classified information, and it would send the wrong signal to all those charged with safeguarding our nation's secrets if you choose to provide her access to this information despite the FBI's findings."

Schiff's statement hit email inboxes minutes before FBI Director James Comey was set to testify before the House Oversight Committee on the investigation and decision not to recommend charges against the former secretary of state.

"The call by the House GOP Leadership to cancel briefings for Secretary Clinton and brief only Donald Trump is as predictable as it is absurd. These briefings are given because it serves the national interest to do so, and because one of the candidates will be the next President of the United States," Schiff said in the statement. “With Trump, the question isn't whether the briefings should occur, but whether they would do any good."