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'Needed to be done': Lawmakers consider if Schiff’s censure will bolster his Senate campaign

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill weighed in on whether the censure of Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., will boost his campaign for the Golden State's Senate seat.

FIRST ON FOX: Several lawmakers on Capitol Hill shared their thoughts on whether California Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff’s House censure will affect his Senate campaign.

Schiff became only the 25th lawmaker in American history to receive censure from the House. Censure is the second-most serious form of discipline a representative can face in Congress, topped only by expulsion.

The California Democrat found himself on the receiving end of the lower chamber’s spit over his pushing of the debunked collusion claims between former President Trump and Russia amid the 2016 election.


However, with Schiff running for Senate in deep-blue California, the censure — which the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee calls a "badge of honor" — could prove politically and financially lucrative. Schiff sent out fundraising emails shortly after the censure.

Republicans, though, believe the move was necessary to preserve the integrity of the House, even if Schiff gets a political boost.

Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., told Fox News Digital he thinks Schiff probably hauled in some serious campaign cash after the censure.

"Yeah, I think he probably raised a couple million dollars that night, but I think it needed to be done," Burchett said.

Rep. Scott Fitzgerald, R-Wis., said he does not believe that Schiff’s censure will elevate him politically in the 2024 California Senate race.

"I think the American people have seen for pretty much the last two and a half years that Congressman Schiff has developed his own strategy of misleading and mischaracterizing certain events," Fitzgerald said.

"He did it as chairman of the [Intelligence] Committee, I think he’s done it as a member of Judiciary in this Congress, and doesn’t seem to have changed his thoughts in regards to the Russian collusion complete debacle that continues to unravel as we gain more information," he added.

Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, told Fox News Digital he doesn’t "really think through those kinds of lenses," adding "the censure yesterday speaks for itself."

"Mr. Schiff, he knowingly proceeded with an investigation knowing he had information that was, frankly, counter to what he was putting out into public view, misled the American people from a position of importance, chairman of the Intelligence ommittee," Roy said.

"He knew the Democrats were at the beginning, the tip of the spear of what led to the investigation in the first place," Roy said. "Hillary Clinton Democrats that were a part of the initial outset of the investigation plus the Steele dossier that was not corroborated as they head into the fall in 2016, and knowing full well that [Charles Dolan, Jr.] was the Democratic operative who was the source."

"And he had all of the information at his disposal that we’ve seen released from the intel committee subsequently," the Texas Republican continued. "And so, I think it’s a matter of course for the House to be able to check against abuse of power like that, and the American people need to have that happen, regardless of what the political consequences are."

Arizona GOP Rep. Eli Crane told Fox News Digital he wouldn’t say "what’s going to happen, what’s not going to happen," but that what he thinks "needs to happen if we’re going to save this country is: Republicans need to learn how to punch back."

"For far too long, I think this town on our side of the aisle has been run by country club Republicans who have managed the decline of this country because they’re more interested in being gentlemen instead of fighting back," Crane said.

"I’m not one of those guys, clearly, and I’m glad that we have other members like Rep. Anna Paulina Luna from Florida who feels the exact same way," he continued. "I think the only way to make change in this town is to force change and that’s what we’re doing right now."

On the other side of the aisle, California Democrat Rep. Robert Garcia told Fox News Digital the censure of Schiff was "a huge mistake."

"Adam Schiff has stood up for truth and for justice, and I think the Republican conference doesn’t even want to deal with George Santos, who is the person who should be really getting censured and removed from Congress," Garcia said.

"I’m not sure what it’ll do politically, but obviously the Democratic caucus has stood by Adam Schiff," he added.

The censure vote against Schiff, which ultimately passed by a party line vote of 213-209 with six Republicans voting present, was launched by Republican Florida Rep. Anna Paulina Luna. The censure bill said that Schiff’s peddling of the debunked collusion narrative between Russia and former President Donald Trump was unbecoming of a member.

"As chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff launched an all-out political campaign built on baseless distortions against a sitting U.S. president, at the expense of every single citizen in this country and the honor of the House of Representatives," Luna said before the vote.

"With access to sensitive information unavailable to most members of Congress and certainly not accessible to the American people, Schiff abused his privileges, claiming to know the truth while leaving Americans in the dark about his web of lies . . . lies so severe that they altered the course of the country forever," she said.

Fox News Digital’s Andrew Mark Miller contributed reporting.

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