At a media availability with House Republicans following the impeachment inquiry vote Thursday, Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) challenged Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, to be the first witness in the upcoming impeachment hearings to answer for his relationship with the whistleblower.
REP. DOUG COLLINS (R-GA): Thank you, everyone. What you've heard so far is very true. But as I said on the floor today, what you saw in the House was a very dark cloud falling upon this democracy. Even more, it's falling upon the House because what is happening here--and Mr. McGovern had the audacity to stand there today and say all Republicans want to do is argue about process; they don't want to argue about substance. I think our leadership team and others have said today that's not true.
But let me also say something to Mr. McGovern. Process leads to substance. When you screw up the process, then you're looking for an answer you've already determined. Notice what they've done. We're only putting it in Adam Schiff's purview right now. We've already heard how that's unprecedented. But I want to go to the committee that has always historically been the committee of impeachment. And the impeachment committee should be the Judiciary Committee. If you want to do this right, then Madam Speaker, do it right. Do not lie to the American people and say these procedures put up are the same as Nixon and Clinton. I challenge the rules, Chairman, today to say if you wanted to have that argument, then I'll have that argument. Give us plenty of time, and I'll guarantee you I will win. Why? Because we're right.
900 precedents in Clinton and Nixon. I saw eight pages the other day. I saw things that they are only simply saying Adam Schiff's committee now gets to do whatever they want, continue the process without presidential involvement, without presidential scrutiny, without anything else of fairness or bipartisanship in any way that we saw in others. How can they stand before you, and when you go talk to them in a little bit, just ask them, how is that fair?
Then to give it to a Judiciary Committee that has been completely neutered of its power. They've showed for 10 months they were completely inept at handling the Russia investigation. Do I have to remind you of John Dean? This is pathetic. And then when it came to writing the rules for us the Rules Committee actually had to write the rules for the Judiciary Committee because they didn't even trust them enough to do that.
So I ask you as members of the media, how can the American people trust this Judiciary Committee, which the speaker of the House doesn't trust, to handle an impeachment article? I tell you what. When it gets to the Judiciary Committee I do have one thing for Mr. Schiff. If he wants to be, as said, a special counsel, he set himself up, then here's my challenge to Mr. Schiff. You want to be Ken Starr? Be Ken Starr. Come to the Judiciary Committee. Be the first witness and take every question asked of you.
Starting with your own involvement with the whistleblower. Folks, this ain't over. Get ready. The cloud that is dropping will be dropping on their heads because process matters, and substance will always win out in the end, and this president has nothing to worry about on substance. I yield back.