Rep. Devin Nunes, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, told FNC's Maria Bartiromo on "Sunday Morning Futures" that the emerging scandal about his son's business relationships in Ukraine is likely "the end" of Joe Biden's presidential campaign. Nunes also said that a whistleblower's allegation that President Trump inappropriately asked for information about Biden during a July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has "all the hallmarks of the Russia hoax."
"This has all the hallmarks of the Russia hoax," Nunes said about the accusation about Trump's phone call. "Something leaks out. ... and then it's the same reporters that report on it, the same reporters that reported on the Russia hoax. Then you move forward, and what happens? Then supposedly they come and testify -- and the night before they testify, the whistleblower who supposedly doesn't want anybody to know who this person is, or what information they have, well, it's spilled all over the pages of the Washington Post" the day before Congress was briefed on the matter."
"Whoever came up with this scheme -- it looks like somebody was trying to deflect what Biden did back in 2015," Nunes said. "This scheme seems to have backfired on Biden. I mean, Biden's already dropping in the polls."
"These stories first originated back when Hillary Clinton was trying to make sure Biden didn’t get in the race," Nunes said about the allegations about Biden's son. "So now that these have been resurrected, I don’t know who came up with the scheme -- maybe this whistleblower really is not a partisan. We want to hear from that whistleblower, but it sure looks like the scheme has backfired. And, like I said, it looks like this is the end of Biden’s campaign. I really do... his lead is basically down to zero."
Nunes also spoke about the latest information in the Michael Flynn case and his lawsuit against Twitter. Transcript:
MARIA BARTIROMO: The acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, is set to testify before the House Intel Committee next week on the whistle-blower complaint he is refusing to hand over to lawmakers.
It was reportedly sparked by a July phone call between President Trump and the president of Ukraine. Now, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the president repeatedly asked the Ukrainian counterpart -- his Ukrainian counterpart, rather, to investigate Joe Biden's son.
Joining us right now is Republican Congressman from California Devin Nunes. He's the ranking member of the House Intel Committee. He also sits on the House Ways and Means Committee.
And, Congressman, it's always a pleasure to have you.
REP. DEVIN NUNES (R-CA): Great to be here with you in person.
BARTIROMO: Thank you so much for joining us.
So you're going to be there, obviously. You're the ranking member of Intel. What are you expecting from Joseph Maguire?
NUNES: Well, it will be interesting to see what his thoughts are as to why this information shouldn't be provided to Congress.
Most people would believe it's because it was a privilege conversation that the president had with another foreign leader, which, historically, we have never received those.
Now, I'm all for receiving privilege conversations that our leaders are having with foreign leaders, as long as we're going to get all the conversations that happened between Vice President Biden and the Ukrainians, Barack Obama and Putin, Barack Obama and all the other world leaders.
So this really opens Pandora's box. If it's going to be game for the legislative branch of government to get all these privileged conversations that our leaders have, it needs to be more than just President Trump.
We need to get all the conversations that our leaders have with foreign leaders.
BARTIROMO: I mean, once again, you put on MSNBC or CNN, and it's all about this. Once again, the media is all over this, as if the president did something improper.
Did the president do anything improper?
NUNES: Right, this has all the hallmarks of the Russia hoax, right? It's the same -- let's just go through it.
Something leaks out that there's something bad that happened. And then it goes -- it's the same reporters that report on it. The same exact reporters that reported on the Russia hoax report on it. Then you move forward.
And what happens? That's -- then there's -- then, supposedly, the -- they come and testify, the night before they testify. Then this whistle-blower, who supposedly doesn't want anybody to know who this person is or what information they have, well, it spilled all over the pages of The Washington Post the day before the I.C. or the -- before the ICIG, the inspector general for the intelligence community, comes in and briefs us.
NUNES: So this is -- it looks -- whoever came up with this scheme, because it looks like it was somebody trying to deflect what Biden did back in 2015, OK, who's -- he's definitely got some questions that he needs to answer as to what -- what was he doing talking to the Ukrainian leadership at the time when his son has a contract?
NUNES: We want to get to the bottom of that also.
So -- but this scheme seems to have backfired on Biden. I mean, Biden is already dropping in the polls, and this probably could be the end.
BARTIROMO: It probably is a tough subject for Biden to even go to because of these conflicts.
We know that his son also took a plane trip on his plane, the vice president's plane, when he went to China.
BARTIROMO: And then he got a billion dollars from the Chinese government, his hedge fund?
I mean, look, there's a lot. Look, the left knows that Biden's son is a problem for him. This is why, when Hillary Clinton was running, these stories first originated -- first originated back when Hillary Clinton was trying to make sure that Biden didn't get in the race.
BARTIROMO: I see.
NUNES: So, now that these have been resurrected, I don't know who came up with the scheme. Maybe there really is -- this whistle-blower is not a partisan.
NUNES: I mean, we want to -- we want to hear from that whistle-blower.
But it sure looks like the scheme has backfired. And this -- like I said, I think this is probably the end of Biden's campaign.
BARTIROMO: End of his campaign?
NUNES: I really do. I don't think -- I mean, not that he's -- he's still formidable. He still has a bloc of support.
BARTIROMO: Yes. Yes.
NUNES: But if you look, his lead is basically down to zero. If you look what happened in Iowa now, it looks like Elizabeth Warren is in the lead.
BARTIROMO: Your colleague on the left Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is tweeting out. She said, at this point, the bigger national scandal is the Democratic Party's refusal to impeach President Trump.
It just seems like everything that comes out, they continue to move toward any pursuing of impeachment, and they're not looking at the real wrongdoing, which we have been covering for two-and-a-half years, what happened at the FISA court.
What do you make of AOC's tweet?
NUNES: Well, remember, she was put up by the socialists, right, to run.
When she ran in the primary and beat a sitting Democrat in New York City, she was a socialist. So what do socialists do? They want full control. They want one-party control. So the only way to get one-party control right now is to impeach the president.
So that's what they're trying to do. So the more I think that they're -- that they're out there promoting this kind of craziness and silliness, I think the more the American people are going to be put off, and I think the higher likelihood that President Trump is reelected.
BARTIROMO: Meanwhile, I mentioned in the last half-an-hour with Senator Graham that there's this op-ed by Kim Strassel, "Horowitz Speaks."
You had Michael Horowitz testifying last week, not a word about it. What can you tell us about the FISA abuse and when we will see this Michael Horowitz report on FISA?
NUNES: Well, this is going to be more evidence that is coming forward.
So, you had the Comey report. Now you have this report that Horowitz is coming up with. I hear that it is very lengthy. Everybody forgets this is -- we were the ones who first -- the House Intelligence Committee Republicans are the ones that brought this to everyone's attention.
BARTIROMO: Yes. Yes.
NUNES: And then this is what got Horowitz investigating the FISA abuse.
So we have already determined that there was FISA abuse. The question is, does Horowitz come up with new evidence, more evidence that can then be used by the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, Durham, who's been put in place by Attorney General Barr to come up with answers to questions that Mueller -- Mueller never finished his report.
There's so many people that we don't know about with Mueller that we need Durham to not only get to the bottom of, tell us exactly what happened.
NUNES: And then Horowitz should have evidence that can then be used to build criminal cases against people who lied to the FISA court.
BARTIROMO: So you...
NUNES: And that's what we really want to see.
The American people aren't going to have trust in these intelligence agencies until someone is put in jail.
I just came back. I went and did an event out in Missouri for Congressman Billy Long. The question that I get as I'm going through airports, the question I get at these events where I'm speaking publicly, everybody wants to know the same thing.
NUNES: When is somebody going to pay the price for what they did? Are you really going to have a FISA court that operates like this?
I don't think so.
NUNES: And, look, the FISA court has a responsibility too.
So I hope that -- it'll Durham longer to do his investigation.
NUNES: But you know who could really do something right now? The FISA court.
NUNES: The FISA court, once they get Horowitz's evidence that he's going to provide, the FISA court needs to step in and hold some of these lawyers in contempt, because that will get action quick to people that will start to talk.
BARTIROMO: I want to -- I want to take a short break.
But you also have breaking news this morning, because you have pinpointed one individual that we want to talk about. We have done a lot on him. We're going to come back and talk about that.
Congressman Nunes is with me this morning, then General Jack Keane.
Stay with us. We will be right back.
BARTIROMO: I'm back with House Intel Ranking Member Devin Nunes.
And, Congressman, you a moment discussed -- we have some breaking news. What was that?
NUNES: Well, few weeks ago, General Flynn's lawyer filed in court some very surprising claims, made some surprising claims, some of which we didn't know, some of which we were familiar with.
But, remember, we have talked about on your show many times about Joseph Mifsud, OK? Joseph Mifsud is the Maltese professor, Maltese diplomat, who's kind of like this Forrest Gump figure. He just shows up everywhere.
So, if you remember, he was the one who originally supposedly talked to Papadopoulos.
BARTIROMO: Yes. And he told Papadopoulos, Russia has Hillary Clinton's e-mails.
NUNES: Right, supposedly, right? This is what we have been told.
Well, now General Flynn's lawyer filed in court that, when Mifsud -- when General Flynn was at the now infamous R.T. event, where General Flynn went to Russia, even though he had told the U.S. government, hey, I'm going to Russia, I'm going to speak at this event, give a speech, have a dinner, going to be with Putin.
NUNES: Well, guess who was at that dinner, according to General Flynn's lawyers? Joseph Mifsud.
BARTIROMO: So what he is doing there?
NUNES: Well, that's why I say, like, what -- like, why does this -- how does this guy show up in late 2015, and then just happens to talk to Papadopoulos a few months later, happens to be close to British intelligence, happens to be close to Christopher Steele, this London Center for International Law?
BARTIROMO: Right, where George Papadopoulos worked.
NUNES: So, this guy -- and, remember, Mueller stopped short of calling Mifsud a Russian agent.
So what do we know for sure? He's probably not a Russian agent.
NUNES: Now, the question is, who was he working for?
But it is -- it is almost impossible that somebody like this could just happen to show up in front of Flynn, in front of Papadopoulos, then goes missing. Nobody knows who the hell he is. Nobody can find him.
And this is what -- back to the last segment, this is what we hope Attorney General Barr, along with the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, Durham, will get to the bottom of it. We need to know who Mifsud is. This is the guy...
BARTIROMO: If we find out that Mifsud is actually -- I mean, he's the guy who told Papadopoulos that there are -- there are e-mails that Russia has.
If we find out that he actually is not some Russian agent, and we find out that he's working with intel, then we know that they tried to frame Donald Trump.
NUNES: That's correct, yes.
Yes, look, Mifsud is at the heart of all this. Why couldn't Mueller, with $30 million, $40 million, and he cannot find out who Mifsud is?
NUNES: How is it that we have now -- how is it that General Flynn's lawyers have found out that Mifsud was at this R.T. event?
We think that that's true now, with the evidence that we have seen.
NUNES: How was it that Mueller spends all this money and never finds this out, when this is the person that supposedly knows about Hillary Clinton's e-mails?
BARTIROMO: Well, we're going to -- we're going to follow that.
NUNES: None of this makes any sense.
BARTIROMO: Before you go, real quick, I know you're still suing Twitter. Tulsi Gabbard is suing Google.
Do you want to see legislation on big tech?
NUNES: It may be where it has to go. I mean, we're hopeful that the judge -- this is in court, should be decided this week. We hope that this case moves forward, because Twitter cannot continue to create content, and then decide who gets to see that content.
It's happening to conservatives on a daily basis. And, look, these tech oligarchs are really dangerous for democracy. They have to be reined in.