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‘You’re going to remove yourself, Mr. Gaetz’: New transcript reveals drama after GOP lawmaker crashed impeachment hearing

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House Democrats on Friday released a transcript from the closed-door deposition from White House adviser Fiona Hill showing the dramatic moments when Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) ordered a Republican lawmaker out of the room.

Schiff, the House Intelligence Committee chairman, interrupted an opening statement from Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) to ask why Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) was present in the closed hearing.

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“Excuse me, could we suspend?” Schiff said, according to the transcript. “Do we have any members here that are not members of the three committees authorized to be present? Mr. Gaetz, you’re not permitted to be in the room.”

Gaetz protested, saying he served on the Judiciary Committee, which he argued had jurisdiction over impeachment, but Schiff repeated his command to leave.

“Mr. Chairman, really?” Gaetz said.

“Yes, really,” Schiff said. “Mr. Gaetz, take your statement to the press, they do you no good here, so please absent yourself.”

Gaetz asked whether the California Democrat would have someone remove him from the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility beneath the Capitol, and Schiff said that wouldn’t be necessary.

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“You’re going to remove yourself, Mr. Gaetz,” Schiff said.

Jordan then tried to defend Gaetz’s presence, saying the impeachment inquiry had heard about 20 hours of testimony with only 12 lawmakers present, and he asked whether having an additional lawmaker present would hurt.

“Mr. Gaetz, you’re not a member of the three designated committees that are participating in this interview,” Schiff reiterated. “You’re not permitted to be here. That is the ruling of the chair, and you are required to 1eave.”

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Gaetz asked the chairman to cite a rule justifying his removal, and Schiff again told him to leave.

“I am citing the House rules and the deposition rules,” Schiff said. “You are not permitted to be here. Mr. Gaetz, you are simply delaying the procedures in violation of the rules. Please absent yourself.”

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Schiff told the GOP lawmaker to take his “spectacle” outside, and then told the inquiry they would wait until Gaetz left — and he ordered a penalty to the Republican minority for their colleague’s misconduct.

“I do want to say that this dilatory tactic will come out of the minority’s time for questioning,” he said.


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Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan to give up royal titles — ‘the hardest #Megxit possible’

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Britain's Prince Harry and his wife Meghan will give up their royal titles and public funding as part of a settlement with the Queen to start a new life away from the British monarchy.

The historic announcement from Buckingham Palace on Saturday follows more than a week of intense private talks aimed at managing the fallout of the globetrotting couple's shock resignation from front-line royal duties.

It means Queen Elizabeth II's grandson Harry and his American TV actress wife Meghan will stop using the titles "royal highness" -- the same fate that befell his late mother Princess Diana after her divorce from Prince Charles in 1996.

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GOP senator tells home-state press that impeachment trial must be ‘viewed as fair’: report

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Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) spoke to local reporters on Saturday about her role in the upcoming Donald Trump impeachment trial.

Murkowski explained she would likely vote with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on an initial vote on whether to allow witnesses. However, she left the door open to voting for witnesses after House impeachment managers make their opening case.

"I don't know what more we need until I have been given the base case," she said. "We will have that opportunity to say 'yes' or 'no' ... and if we say 'yes,' the floor is open."

Overall, Murkowski said it was important for the trial to been viewed as fair.

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White House press secretary urged to do her job: ‘We don’t pay you to be a Twitter troll’

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White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham was blasted on Saturday over the confusion resulting from her refusal to hold daily press briefings.

CNN senior media reporter Oliver Darcy was alarmed that Grisham's assistant, Hogan Gidley, was forcing reporters to refer to his remarks as coming from a "sources close to the President's legal team."

Darcy noted that Trump had repeatedly questioned the veracity of unnamed sources, making it problematic for Gidley to demand to be quoted as such.

https://twitter.com/oliverdarcy/status/1218704788432572422

Grisham responded to the criticism and asked Darcy to "stop with the righteous indignation.

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