Washington, Oct 22: US House Democrats have blocked a motion by Republicans to censure Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee over his handling of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
Lawmakers voted to table the censure resolution, effectively killing it, by a vote of 218 to 185, which fell completely along party lines with Republican-turned independent lawmaker Justin Amash siding with the Democrats.
“Chairman Schiff is a great American patriot. Our country is extremely well-served by his serious, smart and strategic leadership to protect our elections, national security and democracy — which sadly stands in stark contrast to Republicans in the Congress,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement after the vote. “The House will proceed with our impeachment inquiry to find the facts and expose the truth, guided by our Constitution and the facts.”
Republicans also argued that the inquiry led by the Intelligence Committee and two other House panels was being conducted in secret and that they have been unable to see transcripts of closed-door interviews.
Schiff has said that the transcripts of the closed-door depositions will eventually be made public.
Trump on Monday retweeted a number of his earlier tweets targeting Schiff over the censure motion, urging Republicans to fight harder for him against the impeachment inquiry.
“Republicans have to get tougher and fight,” he said during a Cabinet meeting at the White House during the day.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on September 24 announced the investigation into whether Trump may have committed an impeachable offence surrounding his dealings with Ukraine, and Schiff is one of the House Democrats leading the probe.