House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) is gunning for transcripts of President Trump's phone conversations with Russian President Vladimir Putin, citing concerns that Trump may have jeopardized national security, according to Reuters.
"I think the paramount need here is to protect the national security of the United States and see whether in the conversations with other world leaders - and in particular with Putin - that the president was also undermining our security in a way that he thought would personally benefit his campaign," Schiff said on NBC's "Meet the Press."
The Democratic-led House last week launched an official impeachment inquiry into Trump in the aftermath of a whistleblower complaint from an individual within the U.S. intelligence community that Trump solicited interference by Ukraine in the 2020 election for his own political benefit.
The whistleblower’s complaint cited a telephone call in which Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to open an investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden, a leader among Democratic candidates seeking to challenge Trump in 2020, and his son Hunter. Hunter Biden sat on the board of a Ukrainian gas company. -Reuters
In response to Schiff's comments, the Kremlin insisted that US lawmakers would require Russia's consent to publish transcripts of any conversations between Trump and Putin.
"Of course their publication is to some extent only possible by mutual agreement of the parties. This is a certain diplomatic practice," said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
"To be more specific, perhaps, diplomatic practice in general does not envisage their publication. If there are some signals from the Americans, then we will discuss (them)."
Interestingly, Schiff hasn't requested transcripts of any calls between former Vice President Joe Biden and former Ukrainian government officials.