by WorldTribune Staff, December 11, 2020
House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said he was briefed by the FBI in 2015 that a woman named Fang Fang was a suspected Chinese Ministry of State Security agent. But McCarthy said he was not notified about Rep. Eric Swalwell’s relationship with the suspected spy.
“Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi was notified. I was not. I’m asking for an FBI briefing now,” McCarthy told reporters on Thursday. “But if she knew and maintained Swalwell on [the intelligence panel] — wrong. He is a national security threat.”
McCarthy said that Swalwell, California Democrat, should be removed from the House Intelligence Committee.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who claims she has been opposing Chinese influence activities for 30 years, said she does not have any security concerns about Swalwell.
“In terms of Mr. Swalwell, in the spring of 2015, the leadership of the House and the committee were informed that overtures from a Chinese person were being made to members of Congress,” Pelosi said. “When that was made known to the members of Congress, it was over. You know, that was the end of any communication with those people.”
Fang’s sexual relationships with other political figures have prompted speculation about the nature of her relationship with Swalwell. The California Democrat has thus far not commented on that speculation.
“Fang’s relationships with at least two Midwestern mayors turned sexual, according to Axios, with at least two incidents being caught by FBI surveillance,” Fox News notes. “When asked about the nature of Swalwell’s relationship with Fang, the Democratic congressman’s office declined to comment.”
Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz tweeted: “More than once, I’ve said ‘screw the Chinese communists.’ Little did I know how closely Swalwell was listening.”
McCarthy also questioned why Democrats withdrew from participation in a bipartisan task force on China after initially agreeing to take part, suggesting Chinese influence.
“This just raises so many more questions. Eric Swalwell should take it upon himself to resign from [the intelligence panel]. Why did Eric Swalwell, knowing what he knew after he was warned by the FBI, he didn’t go to them, they went to him.”
Swalwell has sought to play down the incident, telling CNN and Politico that the relationship happened years ago. He also suggested the Trump administration leaked the information because of his outspoken criticisms of the president.
McCarthy also noted that Swalwell challenged Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on the increase in Chinese spying, insisting Russia remains a greater threat.
“Why did he challenge that and take China’s side and not America’s?” he asked. “… It’s an easy one to answer for me. He is a national security risk that should not serve on the intel committee. Swalwell was swindled and he should be against China now instead of keep standing up for them. “