Schiff pledges to fight potential executive privilege attempts

Story highlights

  • Schiff demanded testimony and documents from the administration
  • He said Obama's homeland security chief would testify

Washington (CNN)Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee, on Wednesday demanded documents

Schiff, in an interview on CNN's "The Situation Room," said he would fight any effort from President Donald Trump or his administration to claim executive privilege, preventing Congressional investigators from accessing documents like memos on former FBI Director James Comey's interactions with President Donald Trump.
"We're going to have to fight that," Schiff said. "I'd be prepared to support any court action. Obviously, this is something I would need to partner with (House intelligence committee chairman Mike) Conaway on, but we certainly have a need for this information."
    Schiff's comments came hours after Senate testimony from Trump administration intelligence officials. During that testimony, National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers and others repeatedly declined to discuss their conversations with Trump following reports the President had asked them to deny evidence of collusion between his associates and Russia as well as tamp down on the investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn.
    Schiff said he had made it clear to Rogers that he wanted Rogers to cooperate with congressional investigations voluntarily.
    "I spoke with Director Rogers today," Schiff said. "I am going to assume voluntary willingness to cooperate with us, and also I would be prepared to challenge any claim of executive privilege here."
    Schiff also said Jeh Johnson, who served as Homeland Security secretary in the Obama administration, was scheduled to testify before the House intelligence committee.
    "We've already been in contact with him to schedule that testimony," Schiff said. "That's our next open hearing. We're also going to bringing in witnesses in closed session for their interviews."