A recording of a fundraising event with Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) reveals why Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein hasn't yet been impeached despite so many Republicans calling for the action — and what they're waiting for.
Here's what the recording said
Nunes told the crowd at the fundraiser that he personally had called for Rosenstein's impeachment, but that it had to be delayed in order to keep the Senate on track with the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
"So if we actually vote to impeach, OK, what that does is that triggers the Senate then has to take it up," Nunes explained to a questioner on the recording.
"Well, and you have to decide what you want right now because the Senate only has so much time," he added.
The recording was captured by an operative who paid for entry to the fundraiser for Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers in Spokane, Washington.
'Sometimes we cringe'
In another portion of the tape, Nunes said that the special counsel's investigation was politically motivated, but admitted that some of the president's tweets made him "cringe."
"They know it's ridiculous to go after the president for obstruction of justice," Nunes said. "But if they tell a lie often enough and they put it out there and they say, 'Oh, we're looking at the tweets,' cause you know you've got a mixed bag on the tweets, right? Like sometimes you love the president's tweets, sometimes we cringe on the president's tweets."
"But they're trying to make a political," he added, "this is all political as to why that story ran in the New York Times on the tweets."
In another portion of the recording, Nunes appears to admit that if a candidate received "secret information" like "stolen emails" from a foreign government, and that candidate released them, it would be a criminal act.
'If we do not keep the majority, all of this goes away.'
In another portion, Nunes explains why keeping a majority in the House of Representatives is so important.
"If Sessions won't unrecuse and Mueller won't clear the president, we're the only ones," Nunes says. "Which is really the danger... we have to keep all these seats."
"We have to keep the majority," he adds. "If we do not keep the majority, all of this goes away."
The audio was recorded by a member of the progressive group "Fuse Washington," and played on MSNBC Wednesday. They paid $250 for their entry.