Rep. Eric Swalwell is facing a renewed effort to see him stripped from the House Intel Committee. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy will crank up the heat on Swalwell by introducing a new resolution to see him removed from the committee.
Pelosi just reappointed Eric Swalwell to the Intelligence Committee. Based on the briefing she and I received together, Swalwell should not be on the panel in charge of guarding our nation’s secrets.
Next week, I will offer a resolution to remove him from the Intel Committee.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) March 12, 2021
“Pelosi just reappointed Eric Swalwell to the Intelligence Committee,” Rep. McCarthy tweeted. “Based on the briefing she and I received together, Swalwell should not be on the panel in charge of guarding our nation’s secrets. Next week, I will offer a resolution to remove him from the Intel Committee.”
In December a story broken by Axios placed Swalwell at the center of a suspected Chinese spy’s “honeypot” operation targeting influential American politicians. Christine Fang, aka “Fang Fang,” was deeply immersed in Swalwell’s campaign, and he was photographed with the believed spy on a number of occasions.
Among the incriminating pieces of evidence reported by Axios:
- Fang took part in fundraising activity for Swalwell’s 2014 re-election campaign, according to a Bay Area political operative and a current U.S. intelligence official. Swalwell’s office was directly aware of these activities on its behalf, the political operative said. That same political operative, who witnessed Fang fundraising on Swalwell’s behalf, found no evidence of illegal contributions.
- Federal Election Commission records don’t indicate Fang herself made donations, which are prohibited from foreign nationals.
- Fang helped place at least one intern in Swalwell’s office, according to those same two people, and interacted with Swalwell at multiple events over the course of several years.
A statement from Swalwell’s office said: “Rep. Swalwell, long ago, provided information about this person — whom he met more than eight years ago, and whom he hasn’t seen in nearly six years — to the FBI. To protect information that might be classified, he will not participate in your story.”
In mid-December, House Republicans also pressured Pelosi to remove Swalwell from the House Intel Committee. The letter was signed by House Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana and Republican Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney of Wyoming.
“We write to you today out of concern with Congressman Eric Swalwell’s reported, close contacts with a Chinese Communist Party spy recently reported by Axios. Because of Rep. Swalwell’s position on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, his close interactions with Chinese intelligence services, however unintentional they may be, are an unacceptable national security risk,” the Republicans wrote in the letter.
“HPSCI handles some of the most sensitive information our government possesses — information critical to our national defense,” the letter continued. “As such, we urge you to immediately remove Rep. Swalwell from his position on the House Intelligence Committee.”
House Minority Leader McCarthy’s resolution would elevate national security concerns about Rep. Swalwell’s position on the House Intel Committee.