Rep. Luna sponsors resolution censuring Adam Schiff for Russia investigation

The resolution passed Wednesday with a 213-209 vote after failing in the House last week.
Rep. Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla., listens as votes are cast for the new Speaker of the House on the opening day of the 118th Congress at the U.S. Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, in Washington.
Rep. Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla., listens as votes are cast for the new Speaker of the House on the opening day of the 118th Congress at the U.S. Capitol, Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, in Washington. [ ALEX BRANDON | AP ]
Published June 21

U.S. Rep. Anna Paulina Luna’s revamped effort to censure Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff passed in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday with a 213-209 vote.

The resolution is the latest high-profile action from Luna, a first-year Republican member of Congress from Pinellas County. The resolution also shows the growing influence of the House Freedom Caucus, a group composed of hard line conservative Republicans in the U.S. House, of which Luna is a part.

A crowd of Democrats shouted “shame” toward the Republican side of the floor as House Speaker Kevin McCarthy repeatedly attempted to bring members into order. Schiff was formally censured shortly after and referred to the House Committee on Ethics for an investigation.

The resolution accuses Schiff, of California, of misleading the public about collusion between Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Russia during a congressional investigation when Schiff was on 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,” Luna said on the House floor Wednesday.

In a letter to his colleagues, Schiff called the resolution a false and defamatory attempt to distract from Trump’s legal troubles.

The Russia investigation concluded that Trump’s campaign welcomed Russian interference and expected to benefit from it, but had not coordinated with the Russian government’s attempts to influence the 2016 election.

Luna introduced a different version of the resolution last week, but it was killed after 20 Republicans crossed party lines to vote against it. Part of that resolution suggested the House Committee on Ethics fine Schiff $16 million, half the cost of the Russia investigation. This week’s version of the resolution had no such requirement.

Last week’s vote came a day after Trump was arraigned at a federal courthouse in Miami after being charged over potential mishandling of classified documents. Trump pleaded not guilty to 37 criminal charges.

On the House floor Wednesday, Schiff said the resolution was “petty political payback” and wasting congressional resources on a “hollow sop to the MAGA crowd.”

“Extreme MAGA Republican Anna Paulina Luna is a phony politician who wastes her time in Congress catering to the far-right wing instead of focusing on the problems Floridians care about,” said Justin Chermol, a spokesperson for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Luna has aligned herself with more conservative Republicans in the House Freedom Caucus like Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida, Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia and Lauren Boebert of Colorado. Members of the caucus often go head to head with more moderate members of the party and are typically pro-Trump.

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In January, Luna joined several other Republicans in a rebellion against McCarthy before he was elected House speaker.