House Republicans Disrupt Closed-Door Impeachment Inquiry

Tom Williams / Congressional Quarterly via ZUMA

Tom Williams / Congressional Quarterly via ZUMA


We ran the numbers: There are 2068 news articles covering this topic. 55% (1147) are left leaning, 36% (742) center, 9% (179) right leaning.

Following former ambassador to Ukraine Bill Taylor’s destructive testimony, nearly two-dozen Republican House members staged a protest on Wednesday by storming into the secure space used by the House Intelligence Committee to conduct the impeachment investigation. 

Led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), the Republican lawmakers demanded they be allowed to see the closed-door proceedings. The protest resulted in such a long delay -- nearly five hours -- to the deposition that pizza and snacks were brought into the committee area. This recent action by Republicans represents a “new and confrontational” phase of the conservative attack on the impeachment investigation. 

The protest ended around 2 p.m. ET when the republicans in the committee SCIF -- Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility -- were forced to leave to attend House votes. Of the 2,068 news articles written, 1,147 (55%) are left-leaning, 742 (36%) are centrist, and 179 (9%) are right-leaning.

A left-leaning article from The New York Times focuses on the potential motives behind the protest by House Republicans. The article reports that the most likely motive to the Republican’s siege of the committee SCIF where the impeachment investigation is being conducted was to “deflect the spotlight from the revelations the investigation has unearthed about President Trump.” The Times also notes that nearly “a quarter of House Republicans are members of the three panels conducting the inquiry, and have been allowed to participate in the private depositions and interviews from the start.”

NPR published a centrist article detailing the protest’s attempt to underscore the weight of Bill Taylor’s testimony on Tuesday. Included in his testimony were allegations that -- while Taylor was in charge of conducting U.S. foreign policy to Ukraine -- a small group of Trump allies were attempting to push a different foreign policy focused on advancing the president's political interests in the 2020 election. According to NPR, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) said that the protest was a “response” to Taylor’s “devastating” and “pulverizing” testimony. Additionally, Swalwell said the protest “will not stop us in pursuing the truth.” 

RealClearPolitics published a right-leaning article that highlights the purpose of the protest in the eyes of the Republican House members involved. Prior to storming the SCIF, Rep. Gaetz and the “Freedom Caucus” members held a press conference where they “demanded transparency in the Democrats’ impeachment inquiry,” according to the article. Additionally, the article reports that Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) tweeted: “By golly, if they're going to do it, do it in public. Don't hide it from the American people. Show your face where we can all see the travesty that you are trying to foist on America & the degradation of our Republic that you are engaged in."