‘What’s he afraid of?’ Schiff’s repeated attempts to shut down GOP congresswoman does not go unnoticed

Rep. Adam Schiff is being slammed for yet another interruption of Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik during impeachment hearings as he repeatedly told her she couldn’t speak because he would not recognize her.

The House Intelligence Committee chairman rebuffed the New York congresswoman again after she tried to interject with points of order during Friday’s hearing which included testimony from Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine.

(Video: CSPAN)


Stefanik and her colleague, Rep. Jim Jordan, interjected just as ranking member Devin Nunes finished his opening statement on Friday.

“Mr. Chairman, I have a point of order under H Res 660,” Stefanik announced. “The point of order is, will the chairman continue to prohibit witnesses from answering Republican questions as you’ve done in closed hearings, and as you did this week when you interrupted our questions?”

“The gentlewoman will suspend,” Schiff interrupted, banging the gavel. “That is not a proper point of order. The gentlewoman will suspend.”

“Mr. Chairman, I have a point of order,” Jordan jumped in, as Schiff shut him down over and over.

“I have a point of order, though,” the Ohio Republican stressed, adding that “there are four transcripts that have not been released.”

“Gentleman is not recognized!’ Schiff exclaimed, slamming the gavel.

“Holy cow,” an exasperated Jordan responded.

“The ranking member was allowed to exceed the opening statement, and I was happy to allow him to do so,” Schiff said.

But Republicans persisted, with Stefanik jumping back in.

“Mr. Chairman, I have a point of order. Mr. Chairman, I have a point of order,” she said.

“The gentlewoman is not recognized,” the California Democrat repeated before banging his gavel again.

“So we know, clearly, you are going to interrupt us throughout this hearing,” Stefanik said.

The exchange followed the two tangling over the transcript of the July 25 phone call between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and President Donald Trump as the New York congresswoman tried to enter it into evidence. Stefanik noted that Schiff had “mischaracterized the call” before.  The Democrat interrupted and ordered that Stefanik “will suspend.”

“What is the interruption for this time?” Stefanik asked Schiff on Friday as tensions escalated ahead of testimony from Yovanovitch.

A battle of words and procedures then unfolded as Schiff, Stefanik, and Nunes locked horns over the congresswoman’s ability to question the witness.

(Video: CBS News)

“The ranking member yielded time to another member of Congress,” Stefanik argued.

“Nope,” Schiff responded, banging his gavel again.

“You’re gagging the member from New York?” an incredulous Nunes asked.

“This is the fifth time you have interrupted a duly-elected member of Congress,” Stefanik told Schiff during the fiery exchange.

The committee chairman insisted he was following House rules in blocking the lawmaker from speaking, and he later allowed Nunes to yield his time to Stefanik.

(Video: CSPAN)

But many watching the proceedings unfold wondered if there was more to Schiff’s reluctance to allow Stefanik to speak, especially in light of the allegedly sexist remark made about the congresswoman by ABC political analyst Matthew Dowd.




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