House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) “acted in concert” with Politico to leak false information from the impeachment inquiry as part of a “scheme” to advance the “inquisition” against President Donald Trump.
These claims coming from the shocking defamation suit filed by a senior Trump White House official on Monday. As both executive chairman and publisher of that media outlet were named as defendants in the suit.
Kash Patel, a leading counterterrorism official on the National Security Council (NSC) has entered his complaint with a Virginia court. He contends that Schiff “weaponized the media” to push his plan forward. Patel had previously been a staff member under Intelligence Committee Ranking Member Devin Nunes (R-CA).
The lawsuit charges that, “between October 14, 2019 and November 8, 2019, Politico and (reporter Natasha) Bertrand colluded, collaborated and conspired with Schiff to defame Kash. Schiff, or members of his staff or aides acting at his direction, leaked to Bertrand the closed-door testimony that [former former senior advisor and European and Russian affairs specialist who served on the NSC Fiona] Hill and [NSC Director of European Affairs Lt. Col. Alexander] Vindman gave in the subfloor of the Capitol Visitor Center. The leaks occurred in real-time. Schiff leaked the testimony to Bertrand because Schiff knew that it would be a violation of House Rules and Committee Rules for Schiff to publish the substance of the testimony himself.”
And further states, “The joint collaborative purpose of the leaks was to publish Hill and Vindman’s false and defamatory statements, including Hill and Vindman’s egregious personal attacks on Kash, so as to further Schiff and Politico’s interests in harming the President and advancing the impeachment inquisition. In furtherance of the conspiracy, Bertrand secretly communicated with Schiff or his staff via encrypted email, including proton-mail, and messaging services, such as Signal.”
“Between October 23, 2019 and November 8, 2019, the Defendants acting in concert with Schiff, made, published and republished numerous false factual statements of or concerning Kash without privilege of any kind. … On November 8, 2019, Schiff revealed the transcripts of Hill and Vindman’s closed-door, secret interviews conducted in the Capitol Visitor Center. The transcripts demonstrate that Politico, Bertrand, Schiff, and his staffers misled the public in the First and Second Politico Pieces, and intentionally lied about the substance of Hill and Vindman’s interviews.”
Also reasoning that, “Politico, Bertrand, and (Chairman of the Board) Albritton knew that Schiff had a preconceived agenda that he was actively promoting. They knew about Schiff’s extreme bias and hatred of President Trump. Significantly, they also knew that Schiff was a wholly unreliable source because of his penchant to tell lies and to mislead.”
Patel seeks a sum of $25,000,000 or more for the defamation he suffered, plus “presumed damages and actual damages, including, but not limited to, insult, pain, embarrassment, humiliation, mental suffering, injury to his reputation, special damages, costs, and other out-of-pocket expenses.”