Should Paul Ryan remove Devin Nunes from the House Intelligence Committee? | The Tylt

Should Paul Ryan remove Devin Nunes from the House Intelligence Committee?

Republican House Representative Devin Nunes has found himself in hot water after a tape of him talking at a closed-door fundraiser was leaked to TV host Rachel Maddow. On the tape, Nunes, who chairs the House Intelligence Committee, seems to be admitting to bias in favor of the president and encourages Republicans to protect him from investigation. The tape has spurred calls for Paul Ryan to remove Nunes from his chair position. But is an embarrassing audio tape a good enough reason?

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Should Paul Ryan remove Devin Nunes from the House Intelligence Committee?
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Should Paul Ryan remove Devin Nunes from the House Intelligence Committee?
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On her August 8 episode, TV host Rachel Maddow played a tape of Republican Representative Devin Nunes talking at a closed-door political fundraiser in Washington state. In the tape, Nunes appears to admit that he is trying to protect the president from thorough investigation in order to maintain control for the Republican Party.

"So therein lies, so it’s like your classic Catch-22 situation where we were at a – this puts us in such a tough spot. If Sessions won’t unrecuse and Mueller won’t clear the president, we’re the only ones. Which is really the danger. That’s why I keep, and thank you for saying it by the way, I mean we have to keep all these seats. We have to keep the majority. If we do not keep the majority, all of this goes away.”

Nunes is the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, the body tasked with investigating the accusations of collusions between the Russians and the Trump administration. By baldly stating he is trying to protect the president, Nunes has shown he cannot be an unbiased investigator into the serious accusations. Not only that, but he could be hindering further investigations with his actions. For these reasons, some are saying he should be removed as the chair of the House Intelligence Committee.

#KeepNunes

House Speaker Paul Ryan has the power to remove Nunes from his position as the committee chairman, and has been asked to remove the representative from the seat earlier this year. In February, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, requested Nunes' removal based on what they saw as "dishonest" actions. Ryan rejected that request. Per The Washington Times:

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan on Thursday rejected Democratic calls to remove House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes from his post, dismissing them as “political games” meant to distract the public.
“I think they’re just playing politics and I think they’re looking for a political distraction, is what I get out of that,” Mr. Ryan said at congressional Republicans’ policy retreat here.
...“I think they would love nothing more than to play politics and change the subject,” he said.

If Ryan did not remove Nunes for his earlier actions, there is little indication he will remove the representative now.

#RemoveNunes

Politico writer Mieke Eoyang argues it is Ryan's responsibility to remove Nunes from this position. Not only that, but as Ryan is resigning from his position in a matter of months, there is little to no chance of the speaker facing serious repercussions from this action.

There’s a broader imperative at stake in our national security, and there are a few simple steps Ryan could take to begin to restore the legitimacy of the House’s oversight of intelligence. He could start trying to fix the problem in his remaining nine months, rather than dumping it on the next speaker and leaving it to him—or, ahem, her—to fix.
First, Ryan should remove Nunes and pick a more cautious, balanced member to lead the panel. One option would be Conaway, the next most senior member of the committee, who had tried to keep afloat the bipartisan investigation and was working well with Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the committee’s ranking member.
Next, Ryan could encourage Conaway to give the staff a fresh start with career professionals who are respected on both sides of the aisle, like recently fired Homeland Security Adviser Tom Bossert or former Republican staff director Mike Allen.
Ryan should also make sure that the attacks on law enforcement and the intelligence agencies cease immediately—shut down this talk of censuring and impeaching the FBI director and the deputy attorney general. It’s one thing to disagree with the policy decisions that are made and another thing entirely to take action against individual political appointees for doing their jobs.
#KeepNunes

Writer Matthew Walther argues against this stance in an op-ed for The Week. Walther believes the kerfuffle about the Nunes tape is overblown. Nunes isn't admitting anything that couldn't already be assumed by his previous actions. Therefore, there's no reason to take the drastic action of removing Nunes from the position. 

So a Republican in the House wants his party to win the midterm elections? Fancy that. Also, good luck. Despite Democrats' embarrassing 1-9 track record so far in Trump-era special elections, there are good reasons to believe the party has a good chance at retaking the lower chamber in November, even if they lose ground in the Senate. So many Republicans are resigned to this conclusion that they are retiring en masse.
The supposedly more "scandalous" part of the recording is the revelation that Nunes is also hoping to end Robert Mueller's special counsel investigation of President Trump's 2016 campaign by any means necessary. He doesn't care whether this means Attorney General Jeff Sessions reneges on his promise not to get involved or whether Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein has to be impeached on some absurd pretext or whether Mueller himself decides not to bring any charges against the president, even the probable bloodless ones involving the obstruction of an investigation into supposed collusion. Is any of this a surprise? Nunes' intentions have been out in the open for a long time. He even went so far earlier this year as to charge his staff with inventing a conspiracy theory about the FBI sabotaging the election to rival even the most lurid speculations of the paid-up Muellerites. 
FINAL RESULTS
Politics
Should Paul Ryan remove Devin Nunes from the House Intelligence Committee?
A festive crown for the winner
#RemoveNunes
#KeepNunes