GOP Committee Chairman Faces Investigation Demand After Classified Info Debacle

0
1039

Rep. Andy Ogles (R-Tenn.) — known as a more strictly right-wing voice in Congress — is asking Speaker of the House Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.) for an investigation into statements this week by Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio), the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

Turner temporarily drove serious alarm after warning in a public statement of what he characterized as a national security threat, calling on the Biden administration to declassify materials related to the matter. Others in government subsequently pushed for a more restrained reaction.

Ogles accused Turner of seeking to cultivate support for legislative initiatives related to combating foreign intelligence operations potentially targeting the U.S. In tandem, Ogles’ corner of the GOP also opposes assistance from the U.S. for Ukraine as part of a more consistent agenda of trying to redirect the U.S.’ focus away from argued foreign threats.

“This revelation by the Chairman was done with a reckless disregard of the implications and consequences said information would have on geopolitics, domestic and foreign markets, or the well-being and psyche of the American people,” Ogles alleged, later adding: “Mr. Speaker, it is with great reticence that I formally request an inquiry as to any impact the Chairman’s statements may have had on U.S. foreign and domestic policy.”

Ogles included an apparent subtext suggesting Turner’s exit from the post as chairman, seemingly taking his continuance in the role as a question rather than assumed. “[S]hould the Chairman retain his post, you have a duty and an obligation to reassure this body (Congress) and the American people that the processes of the Intelligence Committee have not been corrupted by the very institutions they are charged with monitoring,” the Tennessee Republican told Johnson.

Currently, some Republicans are pushing back on a foreign aid package approved by the Senate that sets up new assistance for Ukraine amid the country facing an ongoing Russian invasion. Some have pointed to some of the money designated for that assistance actually going to American companies as weapons deliveries and other aid are assembled.