Mike Pompeo says he held back intel from Rep. Adam Schiff

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Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says he held back sensitive information from Rep. Adam B. Schiff of California out of concerns it would leak to persons who shouldn’t receive it.

Mr. Pompeo, speaking to Fox News on Wednesday, made the claim after House Speaker Kevin McCarthy ousted Mr. Schiff and another Democrat, Rep. Eric Swalwell, from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

“When we provided information to him and to his staff, it ended up in places it shouldn’t have been with alarming regularity,” Mr. Pompeo explained. “In the end, I decided, I held back information from them as a result.”

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries formally nominated Mr. Schiff and Mr. Swalwell to the intelligence panel, but Mr. McCarthy would not budge from his long-stated plan to eject them.

Mr. McCarthy has cited Mr. Schiff’s political partisanship on the panel, including references to the “Steele dossier” and its debunked allegations about former President Donald Trump and Russia as reasons for removal.

Mr. Swalwell had close relations with a Chinese spy, with whom he later cut ties after federal investigators informed him of the espionage link.

Mr. Pompeo, a former congressman who served as CIA director before moving to the State Department in the Trump administration, is promoting a new book and is considered a possible 2024 GOP presidential contender.

He took particular aim at Mr. Schiff in his Fox comments, saying the Democrat “ruined” the committee as chairman.

“I watched the House Intelligence Committee under the leadership of Adam Schiff. I watched him denigrate and lower its ability to actually perform its function,” Mr. Pompeo said. “When he was out talking about the Russia hoax, going on to say that the Hunter Biden laptop was Russian disinformation, knowing that it almost certainly was not.”

In 2021, the Democratic leadership stripped Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Paul Gosar of Arizona over their rhetoric, fearing it would stir violence.

Mr. Schiff says Mr. McCarthy is punishing him as a way to cater to the right flank of his party, as the speaker tries to navigate a narrow majority.

Rep. Victoria Spartz, Indiana Republican, issued a statement condemning Mr. McCarthy’s move.

“I appreciate these Republican members speaking out against what McCarthy is doing,” Mr. Schiff told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on “AC360.”

• Kerry Picket contributed to this report.

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