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After FBI Briefing, GOP Leader McCarthy Says Eric Swalwell Should Be Removed From Intelligence Committee

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said Friday that Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell should be removed from the House Intelligence Committee due to his contacts with an alleged Chinese spy.

McCarthy issued the recommendation following a briefing from the FBI about Swalwell’s interactions with the alleged Chinese agent, Christine Fang.

“The House Intelligence Committee is a special committee. The members on it have access to many of America’s top national security secrets,” McCarthy wrote on Twitter.

“Long story short—There are 200 other Democrats who would be better to be on the Intel Committee than Eric Swalwell.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took part in the FBI briefing.

Axios reported earlier this month that Fang cozied up to Swalwell and several other Democratic politicians while working undercover for the Chinese Communist Party’s Ministry of State Security, its main spy unit. Fang became active in politics in the San Francisco area in 2011, and first met Swalwell when he served as a city councilman in Dublin, California.

Fang maintained contact with Swalwell after he was elected to Congress in 2012. She raised money for Swalwell’s 2014 re-election campaign and planted an intern in Swalwell’s office, according to Axios.

Swalwell has repeatedly declined to give details about his relationship with Fang, who suddenly left the country in 2015.

The FBI briefed Swalwell in early 2015 about Fang’s covert activities, shortly after he was appointed to serve on the House Intelligence Committee. The committee handles highly classified government secrets and is considered one of the most sensitive committees in Congress.

There is no indication that Swalwell did anything illegal. He claims that he cut off contact with Fang after his briefing from the FBI. Republicans have accused Swalwell of hypocrisy because of his prominent role pushing the since-debunked theory that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.

Seventeen House Republicans submitted a letter to Pelosi on Tuesday calling for Swalwell to be removed from the Intelligence panel.

Swalwell has not responded to calls for his removal from the committee. His office did not respond to a request for comment.

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