Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) on Wednesday filed the “PENCIL Act,” calling for Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) to be removed from the House Intelligence Committee and for his security clearance to be immediately revoked.
The PENCIL acronym stands for “Preventing Extreme Negligence with Classified Information Licenses,” but it also appears to be reference to President Trump’s latest nickname for Schiff — “little pencil neck.”
Gaetz’s office issued a statement about the resolution on Thursday:
“As a member of the ‘Gang of Eight,’ Rep. Schiff is responsible for characterizing critical and sensitive intelligence information for other members of Congress and the American people.
“For two years, Rep. Schiff falsely claimed there was ‘clear evidence on the issue of collusion,’ and falsely claimed the Trump campaign accepted help from the Russian government to win the presidency.
“Rep. Schiff cannot be trusted by his colleagues in Congress or the American people, and therefore must be removed from the House Intelligence Committee and stripped of his security clearance.”
Schiff, as the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, had been one of the most vocal promoters of the idea that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.
He claimed repeatedly on cable news shows, in hearings, and on Twitter over the last two years that there was “evidence” of the collusion – even after Special Counsel Robert Mueller did not establish any collusion, conspiracy, or coordination between President Trump’s campaign and Russia.
After Mueller’s finding on collusion, every Republican on the House Intelligence Committee signed a letter calling on Schiff to step down as chairman of the committee.
The full text of Gaetz’s resolution is below:
Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that Congressman Adam Schiff should be removed from the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House and that his security clearance should be revoked immediately.
Whereas Congressman Adam Schiff is the Chairman of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives;
Whereas by virtue of this Chairmanship, Congressman Schiff is a member of the ‘‘Gang of Eight’’, a group of eight members of Congress who access, review, and analyze America’s most sensitive intelligence, including covert actions, as set forth in section 503(c)(2) of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 3093(c)(2));
Whereas because not all members of Congress can access, review, and analyze all intelligence presented to the Gang of Eight, each member must be able to rely upon the judgment, integrity, and truthfulness of each member of the Gang of Eight to serve Congress’s overall decision- making functions;
Whereas Gang of Eight members must be credible when sharing their reactions to America’s most sensitive intelligence information;
Whereas Congressman Schiff can no longer be trusted by his colleagues in Congress or the American people;
Whereas every Republican member of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence has signed a letter stating that they have no confidence in Congressman Schiff as Chairman;
Whereas Congressman Schiff has repeatedly slandered President Donald J. Trump by falsely claiming he colluded with Russia to win the presidency;
Whereas in March 2017, Congressman Schiff falsely claimed the Trump campaign accepted help from the Russian government to win the presidency;
Whereas in December 2017, Congressman Schiff falsely claimed ‘‘the Russians offered help, the campaign accepted help, the Russians gave help, and the president made full use of that help’’ when referring to unsubstantiated claims of collusion between President Donald J. Trump and Russia;
Whereas in January 2019 Congressman Schiff claimed there was ‘‘clear evidence on the issue of collusion’’ between the Trump campaign and Russia;
Whereas in February 2019 Congressman Schiff claimed there was ‘‘ample evidence of collusion of the campaign’’ colluding with Russia;
Whereas Congressman Schiff said in April 2019 he does not regret calling out President Donald J. Trump over baseless and disproved allegations of collusion with Russia;
Whereas the principle conclusions of the Mueller Report determined there was no collusion between the Trump Campaign and Russia;
Whereas Congressman Schiff continues to claim there is ‘‘ample’’ evidence of Trump-Russia collusion ‘‘in plain sight’’ without offering any evidence to prove his claims;
Whereas Congressman Schiff has demonstrated a blatant bias in the performance of his official duties as Chairman of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; and
Whereas Congressman Schiff has proven himself untrustworthy by advancing falsities about the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, as relating to unfounded allegations of collusion with the Russian Federation:
Now, therefore, be it Resolved,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This resolution may be cited as the ‘‘Preventing Extreme Negligence with Classified Information Licenses Resolution’’ or the ‘‘PENCIL Resolution’’.
SENSE OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. It is the sense of the House of Representatives that Congressman Adam Schiff should be removed from the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House and that his security clearance should be revoked immediately.