tv Bryan Pagliano Fails to Appear at House Oversight Hearing CSPAN September 26, 2016 4:50am-6:01am EDT
mr. chaffetz: the committee of government oversight and reform will reconvene, this is a continuation of examination the preservation of the state department federal records. we are scheduled to have mr. pagliano attend this hearing. due to his absence and his violation of a subpoena issued by the committee on government and oversight reform, we intend to adjourn this hearing and immediately convene a business meeting to consider a hearing to report mr. pagliano in contempt of congress. mr. cummings, do you have a statement? mr. cummings: i have a brief statement. let me just say this, this is no surprise to anyone. mr. pagliano's attorney told us he wouldn't be here. they told us it would be an abuse to force him to appear for a second time before congress just to assert his fifth amendment rights. they sent us another letter last night saying exactly the
same thing. let me read from one portion of the let sore there's no question about what is going on here. and i quote, we have corresponded extensively with you and the committee's attorneys over the past two weeks on this subject. the facts have not changed. continuing the quote, you and the committee have been told from the beginning that mr. pagliano will continue to assert his fifth amendment rights and will decline to answer any questions put to him by your committee, end of quote. the letter explains that he already asserted the fifth amendment rights before the benghazi select committee and he should not be forced to do so a second time. the letter continues, and i quote, a subpoena issued by a congressional committee is required by law to serve a valid legislative purpose and
there is none here. you demand under the present circumstances that mr. pagliano again assert his constitutional rights in front of video cameras six weeks before the presidential election betrays a naked political agenda and furthers no valid legislative aim, end of quote. i ask unanimous consent -- consent that the full letter from mr. pagliano's attorney, sent last night to the committee be entered into the official record. i have nothing else on that, mr. chairman. mr. chaffetz: without objection, so ordered. the hearing is adjourned. the committee on oversight and government reform will come to order. pursuant to committee rule 5-b and house rule 2-h-4, the committee announces it may postpone proceedings today on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered.
without objection, the chair is authorized to declare a recess at any time. this is a full committee business meeting to consider the resolution and report recommending to the house of representatives to find brian pagliano in contempt of congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the committee on government oversight and reform. our first and only item for consideration is a resolution recommending that the house of representatives find him in contempt of congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the committee on oversight and government reform. the clerk will designate the report. the clerk: resolution recommending that the house of representatives find brian pagliano in contempt of congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the committee on oversight and government reform. mr. chaffetz: i intend to offer an amendment in the nature of a substitute to the report. without objection, we'll caw call up the amendment in the nature of a substitute and i'll recognize myself to give one statement on the a.n.f. and underlying report. the clerk will designate the amendment.
the clerk: amendment in the nature of a substitute offered pli mr. chaffetz to the resolution that the house of representatives find bryan pagliano in contempt. mr. chaffetz: i now recognize myself for five minutes. today the committee will are consider a resolution an report recommending brian pagliano be held in contempt of the house of representatives. subpoenas are not optional. mr. paglian sombings a crucial fact witness in this committee's investigation in former secretary of state hillary clinton's use of an unsecured server. this is of deep concern to the committee and we have jurisdiction over federal records, we have jurisdiction over national archives, we have jurisdiction in several places. over the course of the investigation, we have learned some of the information about mr. pagliano's involvement. mr. pagliano originally worked for secretary clinton as an i.t.
specialist. as he was closing out her campaign's computer equipment he received a call from justin cooper who testified before the committee last week. it was mr. cooper who requested mr. pagliano build a server for ms. clinton in early 2009 as she started her new job as secretary of state. several months later, in march of 2009, the two men met in the basement of clinton's chappaqua residence to install a new server mr. pagliano built. he continued to monitor and maintain the server while secretary clinton was at the state department. after setting up the server , he joined secretary clinton at the state department as a schedule c appointee in the bureau of resource management. by law, schedule c appointees are required to appoint to a presidentially appointed position. there were no presidential appointees in his bureau of
resource and management, making his employment arrangement at best. later they questioned his about to maintain a private cline's server given his job. even though he worked at the state department for almost four years, the agency has been only able to find a handful of mails. we have questions about this. mr. pagliano's emails are federal records, just like secretary clinton's emails and subject to production and response to freedom of information act request. the committee has jurisdiction over both the federal records act and foia. we also have a long record of oversight, investigative, and legislative work in this area. the committee subpoenaed mr. pagliano to appear at a hearing on september 13, 2016 he did not show up to that hearing. i explained mr. pagliano was uniquely qualified to provide testimony to help us better understand secretary clinton's
use of a private email server. i also made clear the committee would consider all options to his failure to appear, including recommendation he be held in contempt. we heard several hours of testimony from mr. cooper, also involved in setting up secretary clinton's email server. mr. cooper, to his credit, explained a lot. we did appreciate his participation in answering all the questions that this committee asked. throughout his testimony, mr. cooper routinely referred to mr. pagliano as the individual more appropriate to answer questions who knew more about the server. it was clear from mr. cooper's testimony, his words, not ours, that we needed to hear from mr. pagliano. mr. pagliano's attorney asserts that because his client took the fifth before the committee on benghazi he shouldn't be required to take the fifth before this committee. that's not a good faith argument. first and foremost, the select committee's jurisdiction is
limited, only relating to the september 11, 2012, terrorist attack in again because -- benghazi. this committee's jurisdiction is broad. questions about these two topics alone are well outside the purview of the select committee's investigation. secretary clinton's emails and mr. pagliano's were subject to these laws. mr. pagliano could explain what he knew or was told about the laws and tell us whether they were considered by him or others in setting up secretary clinton's private email server. his testimony could provide important information informing legislative reform this is committee may want to consider, ensuring this disaster never happens again. this includes reforms based on how he was able to prevent the state department from locating most of his emails. another key difference this committee has the benefit of
reviewing the testimony mr. pagliano did provide in his interview with the f.b.i. , he select committee never did see that. nor was the select committee aware of thousands of classified emails that traveled over secretary clinton's server when they spoke to mr. pagliano. this committee's questions are broader and more informed than the other committee's making a comparison unnecessary. answering a number of these questions could never subject him to criminal liability. the department of justice has confirmed he was granted immunity before he spoke to the f.b.i. director comey confirmed he was recommend nothing charges be brought against anyone involved in the matter. attorney general lynch accepted this and closed the case. under the circumstance he has no fear of criminal liability preventing him answering question. the committee recessed its september 13 hearing to give mr. pagliano a chance to show up and testify. to clear up any ambiguity created by his six lawyers about whether they'd confirm
service of the prior subpoena well, had the u.s. marshals personally serb him. we scheduled a continuation of the earlier hearing for this morning but once again he failed to show. this committee cannot operate, it cannot perform its duty nor can any committee of congress if subpoenas are ignored. so we're left with no choice but to consider this resolution, report recommending the household mr. pagliano in contempt of congress. now recognize the ranking ember, mr. cummings. mr. cummings: yesterday our committee held an important hearing on a critical issue that matters to millions of the american people. the skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs.
members on both sides of the aisle joined together to examine these abuses in a truly ipartisan way. that is exactly the kind of investigation our committee should be conducting, and that is the kind of investigation that the american people would want us to conduct. but today's spectacle is just the opposite. this is nothing but a blatantly partisan republican attack on the democratic candidate for president of the united states of america. it undermines the integrity of our committee. and it make ours constituents disgusted with congress instead of proud of our work. today is our fifth day of, quote, emergency, end of quote, hearings. on hillary clinton's emails in
the past three weeks. fifth day of emergency hearings. on hillary clinton's emails in the past three weeks. in that period, the chairman has issued an astonishing 12 subpoenas. if you don't count weekends that's more than one a day. that's also more than a third of the total number of ubpoenas he issued in all of 2016. got an emergency here. he issued every single one, unilaterally, with no debate. i ask the question, are hillary clinton's emails really worth a third of the committee's attention? of course not. and what exactly is the emergency?
as far as i can tell, the only emergency is the election approaching in a few weeks. i suppose if republicans could argue that since hillary clinton is running for president, the american people should know everything they can before entering the voting booth. so i ask the simple question, then where is our investigation of donald trump? his potentially fraudulent business practices. his campaign's potential connections to russian hackers. what about that emergency? his charitable foundation's illegal campaign donations, pay to play schemes, and payments to settle corporate debts. the answer's obvious. the republican frenzy is focused exclusively on -- and obsessively on secretary clinton and that is for
political reason. i do believe that this is an abuse of authority and taxpayer dollars to inappropriately affect the presidential election. there's one key fact that everyone needs to understand about today's vote. mr. pagliano has already asserted his fifth amendment right before this very congress on this very topic. in fact, he did it in person. right in front of me and chairman gowdy on the benghazi select committee. this critical fact is not mentioned anywhere in this contempt resolution. not mentioned. you can search all you want. but you will not find it. why is that fact so crucial? because it demonstrates that there is no legitimate legislative purpose in forcing
mr. pagliano to assert his fifth amendment rights before congress a second time. and there is certainly no legitimate purpose in forcing him to do so in public. to do so could open the flood gates for every republican-led committee on capitol hill. committee members may not know this, but last friday, the chairman sent u.s. marshals, yes, u.s. marshals, into mr. pagliano's workplace to personally serve a second subpoena for his appearance efore the committee. the committee could have sent a staffer in a coat and tie but they sent federal marshals with guns. this served no purpose but to harass and intimidate mr. pagliano. the chairman ordered this action in secret.
without even notifying the democratic committee members of his plan. got an emergency going on here. secret. no consultation. secret. no debate. secret. no votes. secret. emergency. these actions are the definition of abuse. they are harassment. and i believe that they are unethical. i've said it before, i'll say it again. and i echo the passion of mr. lynch who has spoke on this subject extensively. the committee's actions in trying to force mr. pagliano to come back to congress and invoke his fifth amendment rights yet gone raise serious legal, ethical, and constitutional concerns.
members should not be placed in any position of voting for a resolution that could subject them or their staffs to potential disciplinary action. the american bar association, the d.c. bar, and the maryland bar which i have been a member of since 1976, all have ethics rules that prohibit attorneys from taking actions to embarrass, harass, or burden private citizens. it is professional misconduct. the d.c. bar's legal ethics committee warns that no attorney should compel any witness to appear in a congressional hearing when, and i quote, it is known in advance that no information will be obtained and the sole effect of the summons will be to pillory
the witness, end of quote. that is exactly what we have here. now, republicans may try to argue that mr. pagliano received immunity from the justice department. but that immunity agreement was limited. and we all had the opportunity to read it just this morning to confirm that. that is why a federal court has already ruled that mr. pagliano can continue to assert his constitutional privileges in separate proceedings which he has done. as i close, one exposes the committee's abuses for what they really are -- what exposes the committee's abuses for what they really are is this. if the chairman really wanted to obtain mr. pagliano's fifth amendment assertion for the record he could have easily held a closed deposition, just as chairman gowdy did on the benghazi committee. but that is obviously not the
goal here, ladies and gentlemen. republicans want a photo op. they want a ready made campaign commercial. no matter what anyone says, that's not a legitimate legislative purpose and as i've said before, i deem it and elieve it to be unethical. although i strongly support the committee's authority and prerogatives of the house of representatives, i simply cannot vote for resolution that is potentially so unethical that it could subject members of the committee or our staff to this -- to disciplinary action. for all of these reasons, i urge all members to vote no on this resolution and i yield back. mr. chaffetz: the gentleman yields back.
i'd like to ask unanimous consent to enter into the record all the correspondence we've had with mr. pagliano's attorneys. without objection, so ordered. does any other member wish to speak? the chair recognizes mr. mica of florida. mr. mica: thank you, mr. chairman. this is difficult situation when you have to hold someone in contempt or vote. ut again, i have to refer to y years on the panel and being the senior member, this -- what we do here in this committee, ladies and gentlemen, my colleagues, one of the most important things that anyone has to do in our government. we all represent hundreds of thousands of incredible people who today are working, struggling to make a living, pay their taxes. raise their families and retire someday.
nd they send us here to make certain that the constitution laws of the land are upheld. and we have one of the most important responsibilities in this committee to see that just that is done. our responsibility and authority under the constitution gives us the right to demand the appearance of any -- any individual, particularly those who have been involved in government activity, and legitimately ask questions of hem. this gentleman was requested in a proper request to appear before us. we had others who came at that same hearing and came and they had the same opportunity, they exercised their fifth amendment right. they took the fifth amendment.
this gentleman defied and was in contempt of this committee. he was in contempt. we can't make this government work, we cannot function if people will not adhere to the constitution, the rules, and the basic ability of the congress to talk to these people. he could have come here, immunity or whether it's limbed or not doesn't make any difference. he would not be denied his fifth amendment rights. he could have expressed that here. but he -- you cannot have as an option, you'll destroy this committee, you will destroy the congressional oversight process, and whether it's a republican or democrat, now listen to this, it doesn't matter whether it's chairman chaffetz or if it was chairman cummings, we cannot have people come here and deny the right
under the constitution for us to question them. they may not want to answer an they have that right under the constitution, just like we have the right to question them. so again, this is very fundamental to the process. he acted in contempt. he thwarted the constitution and laws and the procedures that -- and if you continue that, you destroy the whole basis of our government. that's the difference between our government and other governments. it's really the principal responsibility of this committee, i tell you, this isn't, again, a partisan issue, it's not a political issue, this is -- this is an issue that goes to the very core of the integrity of our democratic and constitutional process. mr. chairman, i yield back the balance of my time.
mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentleman. any other member wish to speak? recognize the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. lynch, for five minutes. mr. lynch: thank you, mr. chairman. it is my opinion, at least from the course of these investigations, that mr. pagliano has indeed previously complied with a subpoena for the same information that the committee seeks today. and he has been given limited use immunity, only limited use immunity, and the previous -- n the previous interviews, which would, again, expose him to possible prosecution if we -- if he were to, i think it's reasonably predictable that he would be subject to criminal prosecution because of the eferral by this committee. n this matter.
in essence, what's going on here is this is what we're engaging in is a review. a review of the decision by director comey not to prosecute. hat's what we're doing here. that's why the prosecutorial notes were requested by this committee and surrendered. that's why all of this is ongoing, because this committee wishes to go beyond the legislative function we have and to have a de novo review of what the attorney general has dismissed and closed and what the director of the f.b.i. has efused to prosecute. i think that, especially this is a violation of the separation of powers clause in the constitution.
i think what we're doing here today is something that if it's denied even to the judiciary, when a prosecutor looks at the facts and this is an extensive interview process, review process, investigation process, when they decide that there's -- there are not sufficient facts to prosecute, then that is their decision. they condition -- they can decide which statutes to prosecute under and whether to prosecute and that decision has been made. and because of the nearness of the election, this committee is going where no committee has one before, basically review and because of the nearness of the election, this committee is going where no committee has gone before, basically review the decision of the f.b.i. not to prosecute in this atter.
and this particular hearing, to hold mr. pagliano in contempt, really boils down to this, is that the chairman is saying that his rule, his rule is that the witness has to come before the committee and be subjected to what the witnesses were subjected to last week. which was total embarrassment. we had reports that were read and forcing them to repeatedly declare their fifth amendment ights. being publicly embarrassed on tv. that's the chairman's rule. but that is not the law. we know because in previous earings, mr. gowdy, and i give him credit, in compliance with the law, brought that witness in, in a closed hearing, executive session, and that witness exercised his fifth amendment rights.
and that was the decent and fair and legal thing to do. that's not what we're doing here. we're continuing to try to mbarrass this particular witness, as other witnesses were embarrassed, mr. thornton, last week. that is not necessary. and i think it's beneath the dignity of this committee and as well, i think violative of the constitutional rights of that witness. that's what this boils down to. i think -- i think this contempt proceeding will have short is rift in the district court -- short shrift in the district court. i don't think it's going anywhere and i take comfort in that fact because we are so far afield of the constitution again in this committee.
not only the fifth amendment but also now the separation of powers where we try to take up a new -- take up anew this matter that's been settled by the f.b.i. director and the attorney general. mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentleman. mr. gowdy. mr. gowdy: most members of the committee probably know how they're going to vote. i don't think this is going to change any minds. i want to talk for a second to the folks who may be following this back home just trying to figure out what these lawyers are arguing about. mr. chairman, there are two separate issues at play. number one, is whether or not you have to come when you have been issued a summons or subpoena. there are people sitting in jury rooms right now all across this country because they received a summons, even though they're not going to be called for jury service they may be excused, they may, frankly, be
disqualified, but you still have to come. there are subpoenas being issued all across this country to firefighters and e.m.s. and police officers and doctors and everyone else who may have witnessed anything from a crime to a traffic accident. they may not get called as a witness. but they have to come. so issue number one is whether or not you have to come when you are issued legal process. and the answer is yes. the witness himself or herself does not get to pick and choose which legal process you're going to follow and which ones you're not or nobody would go to jury service. so issue number one is do you have to come? issue number two is whether or not you have to talk. and unless your name is jack bauer, you cannot force anyone to talk. now, we can have a robust debate about whether or not
this witness has been immunized. i read the immunity agreement. what i find interesting is the double speak that i hear from some of my colleagues. you cannot in one sentence say d.o.j. has refused to prosecute, that this is a nothing case, and then the next sentence say you're worried that d.: j. is going to prosecute. congress cannot prosecute anyone, for anything. nothing. the only entity in this country that can level criminal charges is the executive branch. and they have already said they're not going to do so. so where is his criminal exposure? where is it? unless they're going to say, mr. chairman, that we are worried that he is going to make a false statement before congress. that would be interesting if that's the argument. we are worried that this witness who cooperated with the f.b.i. may tell congress something different. guess what?
the agreement he has with the department of justice requires him to be truthful. so you wouldn't want people to say the same thing to congress that you say to the f.b.i. -- so you would want people to say the same thing to congress that you say to the f.b.i. this is what i find most interesting of all. the department of justice said they're not going to prosecute anybody for anything, this matter is closed. but i'll bet you that agreement allows for this witness to cooperate with other entities of government. in fact, in the old days, it required that witness to cooperate with other entities of government and i'll tell you why, mr. chairman. i have sat while some of the very member who are sitting in this room right now provided oversight over the f.b.i., over national security letters. they didn't give one second thought about second-guessing
the f.b.i. in the issuing of national security letters. i mean who else would provide oversight over the f.b.i. if not for congress? and i listened to some of the very same members on this committee provide oversight over the department of justice. over the prosecution of ted stevens. so they have no problem providing oversight over the department of justice. when they don't like the outcome. but when they do like the outcome, oh, no, no, no. we cannot second-guess. that's the one entity in this republic that can never be second-guessed, is the f.b.i. i find that fascinating, particularly coming from as many criminal defense attorneys as we have on the other side who made a dadgum living questioning the f.b.i. i mean, that's what -- that's how they made their living is second-guessing the f.b.i. but no, once you take the oath of office for congress, whatever they do, you don't want to prosecute the f.b.i.,
we're fine with that. you dent want to do anything about the people who committed fraud in the housing crisis? we're fine with that. god forbid we ask the f.b.i. anything. all i want to know is did you give immunity to the person who destroyed federal records after a subpoena was in place. that's a fair question and i would think every member of congress would want to know the answer. mr. chaffetz: the gentleman's time has expired. does any other member wish to speak? mr. chaffetz: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. my friend from south carolina wanted to help clarify for the folks back at home what this was all about and i don't know if he did that but certainly the rise and tenor of his voice suggests outrage about something that has gone awry. mr. connolly: so let me take my crack at talking at my folks back home. what's gone awry is the rampling of your rights.
election not going well. at the presidential level. maybe we can take a piece out of hillary clinton and pagliano might be the key to doing that or at least a key. and so we're going to send marshals, u.s. marshals to someone's office to degrade and humiliate, an overreach if there ever was, and we'll do it without consultation from half of this committee which kind of tells you they're up to something they don't want quite us to know about. my friend from south carolina says there's a double standard. i certainly supported the critique of the prosecutors that they overreached with ted stevens. it was wrong. in my home state of virginia, i don't applaud the acts of some of our republican governor but
i agreed with the supreme court ruling that it was prosecutorial overreach and there was way too much ambiguity on the stand of what constituted as a quid proquo. i was sensitive to their -- quid pro quo. i was sent tiff to their rights and many of my colleagues shared a concern but we also share a concern about a broader principle here than a short-term political cheap shot in the hopes that might work and the fifth amendment rights of a u.s. citizen be damned. that's not right. and after all of the things are over in this election cycle, the sad legacy of the expediency of dispensing with a constitutional right of every american to protect himself or herself against legal jeopardy, o have a process that protects
them from testifying if they hoose not to whether we like it or not and this isn't sadly the first time we've trampled on those rights. we self-declared somebody, in fact, had voluntarily given up her fifth amendment rights even though she protested that was in the true, even though her attorneys insisted it's not true and even though there's lenty of case law during the mccarthy era, ironically, that clearly suggests that's not the standard. but that didn't stop us. so today we'll vote on a party line vote and we're going to further sully and degrade the reputation of congress and of this committee and it ought to make every american tremble
just a little bit because if we can do this to mr. pagliano, we can do it to you. and oh, by the way while we're at it, what other rights in the constitution -- because we know not the second amendment, because that's sacred. that's not conditional in any way, shape or form. but the first amendment not so much. this amendment apparently not at all. and we'll get to the rest if it's convenient, if the expedient, if it politically serves our interest. when i took an oath for this job, it wasn't to insist that mr. pagliano compromise his rights at that table and be humiliated. it was to protect the constitutional rights of every american to the best of my ability. and we're about to compromise those rights in this vote and that's wrong and that's a legacy none of us should be proud of. i yield back. mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentleman.
does any other member wish to speak? mrs. maloney. but we'll come to mrs. maloney -- i think we have to go to ms. plaskett for five minutes. ms. plaskett: thank you, mr. chairman. my colleague from south carolina knows that not everybody on this side of the aisle was a criminal defense attorney. some of us were actually prosecutors and could never see them self as a criminal defense attorney. so i take going within the scope of the law extremely seriously and i'm very concerned about this being an unethical act on the part of this committee. now, my colleagues questioned this is not about politics and this is not partisan. so i'm wondering what it is about and i think it's an abuse of power and a waste of time. and it's a waste of this committee's time and it's destroying this committee. it's destroying the reputation
of this committee because it's very clear what mr. pagliano would do if he came here. i guess many of my colleagues believe they can break the man and take away him asserting his fifth right when his attorneys have told us in writing that should he be brought here he will assert his fifth amendment right to every question. so what's the point. what's the point of bringing him here and having him in contempt in front of the camera except for the camera because it's something we can do in closed doors under deposition and it would be on the record. his attorneys have been very clear in writing he would continue to assert his right to all questions and they offered to bring him to personally assert his rights in a closed session. but that's not good enough for this committee.
that doesn't serve the purpose of what this committee was once. i thought my colleagues were interested in coming to the truth and to finding out information that we hadn't already found out, that that's the purpose of the oversight and government reform committee, but it seems really that the name of this committee possibly should be changed to the abows committee. the abuse of power committee. the committee that likes to make sound bites. the committee that likes to be on cnn and msnbc and have political fodder for whatever it is they need it for. that's a problem. and it's also a problem because we're not protecting the attorneys that are on this committee because it's very clear, under legal ethics rules set forth by the american bar association as well as the district of columbia bar that if we move forward on this ou're exposing the attorneys who practice or have decided that they want to keep their bar standing or the staff
attorney. i'd like to ask the chair, are we going to protect the attorneys that are here if contempt should be brought against them in a place where they can actually have criminal charges, that being a court of law? is our attempt to be in front of a camera so important that the staff that works for us should be put out on a limb for us to be able to meet our means, our expediency before november 8, or as i understand from some of the assertions that have been made, maybe even after january 20 if it doesn't go the way that they want it to go? so i pose that question to this committee as to how far we're willing to go. are we going to expose the attorneys that are here in practicing in trying to uphold the law because we want to skirt the edges a little bit for the political expediency that we need to move forward in this? and i yield back the balance of my time. yes.
mr. cummings: let me say this. first of all, i want to thank you for raising the issue with regard to the ethical rules of the bar. i said a little bit earlier that i've been a member of the maryland bar since 1976, and i worked hard to get that license. as a matter of fact, even though i'm not practicing now, i still pay my bar deuce because i don't want anything -- dues because i don't want anything to happen to that license. i worked hard to that license and i've sworn to uphold the ethical rules of my profession just as i know you have, not just a letter of the law but the spirit of the law. and maryland, like d.c., has a legal ethical rule that says and i quote, and this is the maryland rule, an attorney hall not use means that have no substantial purpose other than to embarrass, delay or burden a third person, end of quote. and so i just do not see how the actions of this committee regarding mr. pagliano do
anything other than that and that's why i'm voting against this and i thank the gentlelady for yielding and bringing up the point. mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentlelady. the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from texas, mr. farenthold, is recognized. mr. farenthold: thank you very much. and i'll be brief, mr. chairman. i'm not concerned about voting for this. i'm a licensed attorney, and i'm confident that any legislative action i take will be protected under the speech and debate clause of the united states constitution that says i shall not be questioned in any other forum for any activity i take as a legislator. i yield back. mr. chaffetz: the gentleman yields back. does any other member wish to speak? the gentlewoman from new york, mrs. maloney. mrs. maloney: thank you, mr. chairman. and mr. chairman, you have repeatedly claimed on television and other places that this is and to quote your words, one of the biggest security breaches in the
history of the state department, end quote. now, this claim is completely false, outlandish and frankly really unsubstantiated in any ay, shape or form. the f.b.i. director has been on record and has said already and concluded, and i am quoting from the f.b.i. director, we did not find evidence confirming that clinton's email server system were compromised y sign -- cyber means, end quote. now, the f.b.i. is an independent agency, apolitical, nonpartisan whose purpose is to find the truth, protect the american people and protect our system of government. and they found that this was totally unfounded and
outlandish and untrue. so what are we doing? the only person that is being hurt by this is hillary rodham clinton. the f.b.i. has already said there's no case there, there was no harm there, but in contrast, the official state department system was hacked in 2015 by a reported russian hacker and it apparently was a terrible cyber intrusion against a federal agency and against our country. so i'd like to put this in perspective about what we're really talking about and some members of this committee may not remember that in the 1990's this is exactly what the republican leadership did under former chairman dan burton who was chairman of this committee. they falsely accused
undisputedly, historically, they falsely accused the clinton white house of intentionally destroying emails to hide them. and they launched hearings, massive investigations and their claims turned out to be completely false. completely unsubstantiated. just like these claims that they're putting forward now are unsubstantiated. and then back then, just like today, they wildly exaggerated their claims. and i want to read from the actual report that this committee put out under former republican chairman, dan burton, in october of 2000. and where they actually claimed that the fake scandal was bigger than watergate. and may i quote from their report? the email matter can fairly be called the most significant obstruction of congressional
investigation in united states history. while the white house's obstruction in watergate related only to the watergate break-in, the potential obstruction of justice by the clinton white house reaches much further. well, this was preposterous, nd i read last night a report, and i ask unanimous consent to place it in the record by the democratic minority at that time called "unsubstantiated allegations of wrongdoing involving the clinton administration. so i feel -- may we put this in the record? mr. chaffetz: without objection, so ordered. mrs. maloney: thank you. and i urge everyone to read it. and what we have today is another deja vu, a repeat of the same false allegations. and i would venture to say they are political, totally
politically motivated. our independent f.b.i. said there isn't a problem here. they are trying to create one with false allegations. and here we are again and the same republican hysteria is now being thrown at another linton, the same unsubstantiated allegations. the same completely exaggerated false claims, and i urge the listening public to read the eport of the f.b.i. on the current emails and to read the report on the prior hysterical hearings that proved to have no basis to truth and reality. my time has expired. mr. chaffetz: the gentlewoman's time has expired. i'd like everybody to read the
f.b.i. report. unfortunately, it has not been released in its totality. we'll now recognize the gentleman from north carolina, mr. meadows. mr. meadows: mr. chairman, i appreciate your recognition. i would just like to ask the gentlewoman from new york to remind her of the rules -- mr. chaffetz: members are advised to not address other members. they can address the chair but they cannot address others. mr. meadows: mr. speaker, i'd like to make a point of order. the debate here is getting to bring in personalities. we have rules in this committee where attacking members, either their motives or anything else, is not to be done and so i would kindly ask the chair to remind members that if they're going to make personal attacks that they need to keep those in a generic and nonspecific form. i yield back.
mr. chaffetz: before the gentleman yields back -- mrs. maloney: point of personal privilege since my name was mentioned. mr. chairman, can i clarify? i was talking about claims, not a member. mr. chaffetz: i said no. no. ok. what the gentleman -- the gentleman has yielded to me. members are advised -- and i'll read from what the parliamentarian gave me. members must advise they must observe the house's conduct. they may not use disorderly words or unparliamentary language such as words impugning the motives of other colleagues. end quote. so my point here is you can be disgusted by it, you can be frustrated by it. there is a seminole question. i don't think it's a partisan question when there is a duly issued subpoena, that person must appear. t is not an optional
exercise. it's not, hey, i want to dial it in by sending a letter from my attorney. that, no matter which side of the aisle you're on, if you believe in the rule of law, if you believe in the morality of our constitution that requires people to obey that law, now, nonattendance is not an option, and i feel very strongly about that. mr. cummings talked about in his statement about secret this and secret that. i believe it should be as open and transparent. i don't think it should be done behind closed doors. i do think it should be open and transparent. that's the way in large part the judicial branch operates, and i think it's the way this committee should operate to the maximum extent possible. i'd like it to be as open and transparent as possible. i think we issued a -- we duly -- we issued a subpoena in the right way and it is not an optional exercise and that is the question today.
twice -- i was very generous. twice, twice we gave him an opportunity to show up. and i wish we weren't here today. we shouldn't have to be here today. but that was the choice that was made and we're left but no choice to hold him in contempt. he violated the subpoena. so i yield back to the gentleman from north carolina. mr. cummings: if the gentleman will yield? mr. meadows: certainly. mr. cummings: mississippi maloney, her name came up, and i think she was trying to take a minute to explain what she was trying to do. i would ask she be allowed to do that. mr. meadows: reclaiming my time. mr. chaffetz: he was not supposed to. mr. meadows: well, reclaiming my time. i didn't mention anybody's name. i mentioned the gentlewoman from new york, and specifically as it relates -- the ranking member will know full well this is something that is very
personal to me because i came to his defense when someone on my side attacked him. and so it is important that we have debate. it is important that we do that without personalities involved, and we must rise to the occasion to have differences without making personal attacks. and i yield back the balance of my time. mr. chaffetz: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mrs. maloney: point of personal privilege. mr. chaffetz: no. i want to give members each an opportunity if they have -- if they'd like to speak on the a.n.s. does any member wish to speak on the a.n.s.? sorry. mr. desantis is now recognized for five minutes. mr. desantis: mr. chairman, when i hear some of these things, i sat and read -- i sat and heard director comby. he did say the f.b.i. did not find evidence that secretary clinton's email system was hacked by foreign agents. the implication that was made by the gentlelady from new york
was in fact that did not happen. that's not what comey said. what he said was, we do not have been able to determine if they had done it because they're sophisticated. if you look at somebody like former director -- deputy director of the c.i.a., mike more ell, who is supporting secretary clinton for president, he basically said any good intelligence service would have anything on any classified system but particularly something like secretary clinton's emails. so i think the issue this subpoena is driving at is you had a lot of classified information on unclassified server. you have people like pagliano who was involved in that and we have a fact pattern in which those emails were deleted not only after being revealed publicly, not only after being subpoenaed by congress but after combetta had a conversation with people affiliated with secretary
clinton and of course now these reddit trass scripts have been found by people online that strongly suggests that someone with a similar profile to combetta, hey, i want to strip v.i.p.'s email. once it became public it was deleted. there are a lot of questions about how the i.t. side of this investigation was handled. whether the f.b.i. pursued a case involving potential obstruction of documents and people like pagliano and combetta is essential to that. i think it's an appropriate use of oversight authority because i think people who know who've been involved in the federal system, a lot of times the f.b.i. can't get you on a substantive offense they go after the process crimes, lying to them, obstructing justice, destroying evidence. and there didn't seem to be from the reports we read that concerted of an effort to do that in this case. so i'm supportive of what the chairman is doing and i yield back.
mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentleman. does any other member wish to speak on the a.n.s.? are there any -- recognize the gentleman from alabama, mr. palmer. mr. palmer: thank you, mr. chairman. i have been reluctant to speak on this. i feel compelled to because i think this is bigger than the email issue. it's bigger than the politics that our colleagues keep bringing up. it's about the rule of law. it's about constitutional separation of powers. i'm not the only one that feels that way. jonathan turley who is recognized as a preeminent law professionor warns that the constitution is in danger. it's essential that we as a committee exercise the responsibility invested in us by the constitution to protect the nation from abuse of power. abuse of power by the executive branch, abuse of power by the justice department.
and clearly it's against the law to destroy evidence. evidence was destroyed. it's clearly against the law to alter documents and documents were altered. it's clearly against the law for people who are not authorized to handle classified information to be given classified information. and it's our responsibility to protect the constitution and protect the nation against people who violate the law. it shouldn't matter what had party's in power. it shouldn't matter who did it. that's our responsibility. it shouldn't matter where we are in an election cycle. that's our responsibility. when you have law professionors such as large tribe and particularly jonathan turley who testified in a senate judiciary hearing that we're watching a fundamental change in our constitutional system and it's changing in the way that the framers warned us to avoid. so i think this is bigger than the politics. it's bigger than the issue. it's about preserving the
separation of powers and this committee upholding its constitutional oath of office to do its duty. i yield back. mr. chaffetz: i thank the gentleman. are there any amendments to the amendment in the nature of a substitute? any other member wish to speak? the question is now on the amendment in the nature of a substitute. those in favor signify by saying aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it and the amendment is agreed to. the question is now on adoption and favorably reporting the ontempt amendment, as amended, and transmitting the report as adopted for filing as a privileged report to the house of representatives. all those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the -- roll call has been
requested. the clerk will call the roll. >> mr. chaffetz. mr. chaffetz: aye. >> mr. chaffetz votes aye. mr. mica. mr. mica: aye. >> mr. mica votes aye. mr. turner. mr. duncan. mr. duncan votes aye. mr. jordan. mr. jordan votes yes. mr. walberg. mr. amash. mr. amash votes yes. mr. gosar. r. desjarlais. mr. desjarlais votes yes. mr. gowdy. mr. gowdy votes yes. mr. farenthold. mr. farenthold: yes. mr. farenthold votes yes. mrs. lummis. mr. massie. mr. massie: yes. >> mr. massie votes yes. mr. meadows votes yes. r. mulvaney.
mr. buck. mr. walker. mr. walker votes yes. mr. blum. mr. blum votes yes. mr. hice. mr. hice votes yes. mr. russell. mr. carter. mr. grothman. mr. grothman votes yes. mr. hurd. mr. hurd votes yes. mr. palmer. mr. palmer votes yes. mr. cummings. mr. cummings votes no. mrs. maloney. mrs. maloney votes no. ms. norton. mr. clay. mr. clay votes no. mr. lynch. mr. lynch votes no. mr. cooper. mr. connolly.
mr. connolly: never, no how, no way, no. >> mr. connolly votes no. ms. duckworth. ms. duckworth votes no. ms. kelly. ms. kelly votes no. mrs. lawrence. mrs. lawrence votes no. mr. lieu. mrs. watson coleman. mrs. watson coleman votes no. ms. plaskett. ms. plaskett votes no. mr. desaler in. mr. desauliner votes no. mr. welch. r. welch votes no. ms. lujan grisham. mr. chaffetz: how has the member of the district of columbia recorded? >> ms. norton has not
voted. ms. norton votes no. mr. chaffetz: has all members -- oh. >> mrs. lummis is not recorded. mrs. lummis votes yes. mr. chaffetz: have all members had had an opportunity to ote? how is the member from michigan, mr. walberg, recorded? mr. walberg: aye. >> mr. walberg is not recorded. e votes yes.
chaff the clerk will report this tally. >> there are 19 nays and 15 -- yeas and the 15 nays. mr. chaffetz: without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. pursuant to 2-l, members will submit their views on votes recorded today. i ask unanimous consent that the staff make necessary conforming changes to the report, ordered reported today subject to the approval of the minority. hearing no objection, so ordered. there's no further business. without objection, the committee stands adjourned. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. isit ncicap.org]
♪ announcer: this week on "q&a," author and "washington post" columnist robert samuelson. he talks about his columns and the economic performance of the united states under president obama. brian: robert samuelson, how would you describe what you do for a living? robert: i've been reporting about the economy since the late 1960's. i write a column for the "washington post" writers group. one of the columns appears in "the washington post" and other papers. one of them appears mostly on the internet, the other appears in the newspaper and on the internet. brian: what do you want people