Just days ago we learned that the Senate Intelligence Committee's investigation into Donald Trump's ties to Russia is woefully understaffed. Now, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee informs us that the House investigation faces a staffing shortage, too.
News broke earlier this week that Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina had failed to subpoena any documents or witnesses or even bother to appoint any full-time staff to the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Donald Trump’s possible collusion with Russia.
Amidst complaints about the pace of the investigation and the lack of resources dedicated to it, that committee has since hired two full-time staff in addition to seven working on the investigation part-time. Welcome news, though still woefully inadequate when you consider that just one committee out of seven that investigated Benghazi had 46 staff.
So it is especially troubling, though perhaps not surprising, to now learn from House Intelligence Committee ranking member Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) that that committee is also not staffed appropriately.
From a new interview with Chuck Todd on Meet the Press Daily:
SCHIFF: In large white collar investigations, and this is sort of in this category, understand it takes a long time to investigate evidence of this nature particularly when you’re dealing with evidence that may be held by a hostile foreign government or may involve witnesses spread out throughout the globe. This is not something easy to prove in the best of circumstances.
And you have to layer onto that we have a full-time day job in overseeing the intelligence agencies.
It’s one of the reasons I’d feel a lot more comfortable if we had an independent body, an independent commission, also doing this work, that would be completely immune from any political pressure, but also that would be staffed appropriately.
Recent poll shows that 73 percent of voters want an independent investigation into Russia’ election meddling. Rep. Schiff’s concerns about the time and resources dedicated to the House probe, combined with revelations about under-staffing of the Senate Intelligence Committee, are sure to compound that call from Congress and the American public.