Swalwell scandal: Dems' hypocrisy 'breathtakingly remarkable,' White House says

Swalwell scandal: Dems’ hypocrisy ‘breathtakingly remarkable,’ White House says

White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany slammed Rep. Eric Swalwell over a report that a suspected Chinese spy targeted him during his campaign, claiming Democrats are “under control of a foreign power.”The White House’s comments come after a report that a suspected Chinese spy got close to a number of politicians, including Swalwell, D-Calif., and that the FBI stepped in to disrupt the situation — even giving a “defense briefing” to him.FBI STEPPED IN AFTER SUSPECTED CHINESE SPY GOT CLOSE TO SWALWELL, OTHER POLITICIANS, REPORT FINDS“For 4 years, President Trump was accused of being a Russian operative,” McEnany said in a statement Wednesday.“It’s absolutely breathtakingly remarkable that the entity that was under control of a foreign power was the Democrats, including Eric Swalwell,” she said. “Democrats were accusing the right of something they were doing all along.”She added: “It was never Russia and the Republicans, it was the Democrats and China.”Axios reported that Swalwell was one of the targets of a Chinese national named Fang Fang or Christine Fang, who left the country in 2015 after working her way into political circles in California. The outlet reported that she was romantically involved with at least two mayors in the Midwest.While officials do not believe she received or passed on classified information, officials believed the case “was a big deal, because there were some really, really sensitive people that were caught up in the network,” one official told the outlet.
Rep. Eric Swalwell, a Democrat from California, listens during a House Judiciary Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., June 24, 2020. Photographer: Anna Moneymaker/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images
As for Swalwell, Fang reportedly took part in fundraising for the liberal congressman’s 2014 reelection campaign — although she did not make donations nor was there evidence of illegal contributions.Fang’s earliest known engagement with Swalwell occurred through the Chinese Student Association, Axios reported, and by 2014, she had developed “close ties” to Swalwell’s office.Fang is also reported to have placed at least one intern in Swalwell’s office and interacted with him at multiple events over several years.CHINA CONDEMNS NEW US SANCTIONS, SALE OF MILITARY EQUIPMENT TO TAIWANAccording to Axios, investigators became so alarmed by Fang’s behavior and activities that they alerted Swalwell in 2015 to their concerns, and gave him a “defensive briefing.” Swalwell then cut off all ties with Fang and has not been accused of any wrongdoing, according to an official who spoke to the outlet.Fang left the country in mid-2015.In a statement to the outlet, Swalwell’s office said: “Rep. Swalwell, long ago, provided information about this person — whom he met more than eight years ago, and whom he hasn’t seen in nearly six years — to the FBI. To protect information that might be classified, he will not participate in your story.”His office did not provide any further comment to Fox News.An FBI official familiar with the investigation told the San Francisco Chronicle that Swalwell was “completely cooperative and under no suspicion of wrongdoing.”“It was a defensive briefing,” the official told The Chronicle. “Information was obtained where we do a duty to warn … that he may be targeted by a foreign government.”Swalwell sits on the House Intelligence Committee, which, for years, was investigating whether members of the 2016 Trump campaign colluded or coordinated with Russia to influence the 2016 presidential election. Fang also volunteered for the 2014 House bid of Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., and a 2013 fundraiser for Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii. Khanna’s office said the congressman saw Fang at several gatherings but had no further contact, while Gabbard’s office told the outlet she “has no recollection of ever meeting or talking with [Fang], nor any recollection of her playing a major role at the fundraiser.”Khanna also expressed concern about the FBI investigations having “collateral damage” on privacy.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP”I respect the need for law enforcement to protect our nation from espionage. [But] we need strict guardrails to make sure the FBI’s investigations do not have collateral damage to the privacy of American citizens or to the legitimacy of Asian Americans in this country,” he said.Fox News’ John Roberts and Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report. 

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