Republican lawmaker slams 'Soviet-esque' impeachment inquiry process after House vote

Rep. Guy Reschenthaler, R-Pa., described the ongoing Trump impeachment inquiry process as "Soviet-esque" and blasted Democrats for their "giddiness" after a nearly party-line vote approving the probe's parameters.

Reschenthaler, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee who is privy to the closed-door hearings run by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told Neil Cavuto on Thursday President Trump should be afforded the opportunity to cross-examine witnesses.

"Why isn't the press involved in this? Why aren't all members of Congress given these transcripts? Why doesn't the president have representation behind closed doors?" he asked.

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Affirming Cavuto's question as to whether he agrees with other top Republican lawmakers that the process is a "kangaroo court," Reschenthaler said the process under Schiff and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., hearkens back to the post-war Moscow.

"It is also Soviet-esque," he said, wondering aloud why Schiff's committee was given the lead and not the House Judiciary Committee -- which was at the forefront of the Nixon and Clinton impeachments.

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"You know what was so disturbing today was just how giddy the Democrats were when this vote passed," he added. Two Democrats -- Reps. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., and Jeff Van Drew, D-N.J., voted with Republicans against the impeachment inquiry rules. A former Republican, Rep. Justin Amash, I-Mich., voted with the majority of Democrats in supporting the measure.

The southwestern Pennsylvania lawmaker also called on Schiff to release the transcripts from his closed-door proceedings so the public is better informed on whether or not to support impeaching the president.

"Let the public decide," he said.

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He called on Democrats writ large to take the impeachment inquiry process more seriously and give the same balance to it that past House majorities had.

He called it a distraction from what he considered to be more pressing matters the House has yet to take up, like the USMCA trade deal.