Members of Congress aren’t interested in criminal justice matters when it comes to the classified documents that have been found on the properties of President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, but they do want the Department of Justice to allow them to have access to the papers, Sen. Marco Rubio said Sunday.
“We’re not interested in the timeline, the tick-tock, the who-got-what, who-did-that,” the Florida Republican told CBS’s “Face the Nation.” “We deserve and have a right and a duty to review what the materials were so we can have a better understanding of not just what the agency is doing about it, but whether it’s sufficient.”
Rubio, the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, appeared on the program with Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., the committee’s chairman, to say they speak for their whole committee when demanding the documents.
“I don’t know how congressional oversight on the documents, actually knowing what they are, in any way impedes an investigation,” Rubio said. “These are probably materials we already have access to. We just don’t know which ones they are.”
Further, he said, if the documents were “very sensitive” and pose a national security threat, then the nation’s intelligence agencies must work on ways to mitigate that.
“How can we judge whether their mitigation standards are appropriate, if we don’t have material to compare it against and we can’t even make an assessment on whether they’ve properly risk-assessed it?” said Rubio.
Warner commented that both sides of the aisle are “united in that we have to find a way to do our job. That means we need these documents.”
He added that even Biden and Trump would want it known if “there’s no there there” when it comes to concerns over compromised intelligence.
Rubio, meanwhile, called it “absurd” that the members of Congress are being denied access to the documents.
“There isn’t a day that goes by that there isn’t some media report about what was found where, what some sort of characterization of the material,” Rubio said. “I just saw one this morning again. So somehow, the only people who are not allowed to know what was in there are congressional oversight committees.”
He added that the DOJ’s media leaks are “unimpeded,” and now, there is an “untenable situation that I think has to be resolved.”
Rubio said he does not want to start withholding funds from the agencies involved in the investigation, but at the same time, “we’re not going to sit here and just issue press releases all day.”
“I’d prefer for them just to call us this morning or tomorrow or whenever and say, ‘Look, this is the arrangement that we think we can reach so that the overseers can get access to this,'” he said.
Warner, meanwhile, said the committee is “not really focused” as much on classified documents that were turned over after being found at former Vice President Mike Pence’s home. But he added, “Who knows what additional shoes may fall?”
Their call comes as House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Turner, R-Ohio, Sunday said both sides of the aisle will try to force the Department of Justice to allow them to review the classified documents.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.