Russia hoaxer Rep. Eric Swalwell of California, who sits on both the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and Central Intelligence Agency Subcommittee, blamed leakers for exposing his connections to a Chinese spy, implying that Democrats’ failed impeachment scheme is of more significance than any intel gathered on American politicians and reported back to Communist China.
“The wrongdoing here, Jim, is that at the same time this story was being leaked out is the time I was working on impeachment on the House intelligence and judiciary committees,” Swalwell said in an interview on CNN on Wednesday.
“If this is a country where people who criticize the president are going to have law enforcement information weaponized against them, that’s not a country any of us want to live in and I hope it is investigated as to who leaked this information,” he added.
This week, reporting by Axios revealed that suspected Chinese spy Christine Fang cultivated deep connections with U.S. Democratic politicians in the Bay Area for years, including with Swalwell, to send political intelligence and personal information back to China’s Ministry of State Security (MSS), one of the country’s primary spying agencies.
Fang reportedly developed a relationship with Swalwell, raising millions for Swalwell’s re-election in 2014 and assisting in placing at least one intern in his Washington, D.C. office before abruptly leaving the country in 2015, around the same time a counterintelligence investigation was opened on her.
Swalwell was reportedly “surprised” to hear about his presence in the Axios story because he claims there was “never suspicion of wrongdoing on my part”
“Just over six years ago, I was told about this individual and then I offered to help and I did help,” Swalwell said. “I was thanked by the FBI for my help and that person is no longer in the country.”
“All I did was cooperate,” he added. “The FBI said that yesterday.”
Swalwell made similar comments to Politico after the Axios story broke, saying that as a critic of the president, “The timing feels like that should be looked at.”
The Federalist previously reported that in addition to bundling donors for the congressman, officials believe Fang may have been sexually and romantically involved with Swalwell.
Two sources directly familiar with the counterintelligence investigation of Fang told The Federalist that she and Swalwell had a sexual relationship. Federal officials were so concerned about the romantic relationship between a U.S. congressman and a suspected Chinese spy that they even investigated whether Swalwell may have tipped Fang off about the counterintelligence investigation after he was given a defensive briefing on the matter shortly before Fang disappeared from the U.S. in 2015. A senior U.S. intelligence official told The Federalist that investigators only uncovered limited circumstantial evidence that Swalwell may have tipped Fang off after he was warned of her connections to Chinese intelligence.
Swalwell told CNN that he had “no concerns” about Fang before he was briefed on her ties to Chinese intelligence.
“Did you have any concerns about this person before you had what’s known as a defensive briefing from the FBI to make you aware of this threat?,” CNN anchor Jim Sciutto asked.
“No, Jim. I was shocked,” Swalwell replied.
Swalwell was one of the many Democrats who peddled lies and rumors claiming that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election.
— Eric Swalwell (@ericswalwell) January 9, 2019
The mainstream media have largely ignored the report from Axios, which named other Democrat politicians who were shown in pictures with Fang or benefited from her volunteer work and fundraising, devoting little to no time to the story.
Jordan Davidson is a staff writer at The Federalist. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.
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