GOP lawmaker calls for inquiry into fellow ‘R,’ Intel boss Mike Turner for dirty Valentine’s Day trick

A GOP lawmaker is calling for an inquiry into his Republican colleague, Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) over his cryptic warning of a “serious national security threat” this week, suggesting that he may have had ulterior motives in stirring up panic.

On Wednesday, the House Intelligence Committee chairman dropped a bombshell with his statement calling for President Joe Biden to declassify information already made available to Congress about the unspecified threat, an announcement that comes as the GOP-controlled House is the last hurdle for the $60 billion giveaway to Ukraine that cleared the Senate earlier this week as well as the renewal of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) without badly needed reforms to protect Americans from warrantless government snooping.

But something seemed suspicious about Turner’s fearful Valentine’s Day card to the nation, at least in the mind of some House Republicans, one of whom, Rep. Andy Ogles (R-Tenn.) is calling for an inquiry into what he describes as the Intel chair’s “reckless disregard” of his statement.

“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, and the well-being and psyche of the American people,” the congressman wrote in a Thursday letter to GOP House Speaker Mike Johnson.

“In hindsight, it has become clear that the intent was not to ensure the safety of our homeland and the American people, but rather to ensure additional funding for Ukraine and passage of an unreformed Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA.) This act constituted poor judgment at a minimum and a complete breach of trust influenced by the pursuit of a political agenda at the maximum,” the letter reads.

“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,” Ogle wrote, adding that as Speaker, it is Johnson’s duty and 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.”

Johnson downplayed the hysteria, telling reporters “I want to assure the American people: There’s no need for public alarm…”

Turner’s unexpected statement came after he visited Ukraine, a country that he is determined to send tens of billions to at a time when there are very serious issues that go unattended right here at home, particularly the crisis at the southern border.

National security spokesman John Kirby confirmed that Turner was referring to a space weapon being developed by the Russians but that it’s “not an active capability that’s been deployed.”

“You’re not talking about a weapon that can be used to attack human beings or cause physical destruction here on Earth,” he said, downplaying the sense of urgency that Turner was seemingly trying to create with his fearmongering.

Chris Donaldson

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