A bipartisan group of lawmakers sent a letter to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Friday requesting a committee to investigate government programs involving unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAPs, following a whistleblower’s testimony Wednesday at a House Oversight Committee hearing.

Reps. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., and Anna Paulina Luna, R-Fla., who spearheaded the whistleblower hearing, along with Reps. Jared Moskowitz, D-Fla., and Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., sent the letter following testimony by David Grusch, a former intelligence officer who worked on the National Reconnaissance Office’s UAP Task Force.

The trio requested a select committee “with subpoena authority” to investigate further claims made by Grusch and others. The goal of the committee would be “to go about the task of collecting information from the Pentagon and elsewhere for the benefit of the public and to discharge our constitutional, legislative and oversight roles,” the trio wrote in the letter.

“This issue is much bigger than the news cycle: it represents a confluence of concerning governmental actions that indicates a lack of forthrightness on the part of the Pentagon and the intelligence community. No governmental program, no matter how sensitive, can be outside the view of Congress,” the group continued.

The government has operated — without congressional knowledge or oversight — a decades-long UFO retrieval and reverse engineering program, Grusch told lawmakers Wednesday. Asked by Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., if the government had retrieved the pilots of the collected aircraft, the retired airman said that some of the UFOs retrieved had “biologics” in them.

Grusch did not name the government officials involved in the program, nor did he provide any documents to corroborate his testimony. He did say a number of times during the hearing that he would divulge more information to lawmakers in a classified setting.

The testimony flew in the face of previous statements from Pentagon officials, including the Pentagon’s head of UFO research and analysis, Sean Kirkpatrick, who previously denied the existence of an alien exploitation program.

Kirkpatrick, who leads the Pentagon All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office, told senators in April that there was “no credible evidence” that any objects being examined by his office were of extraterrestrial origin.

The Pentagon declined to comment about the possibility of a committee on UFOs, but denied Grusch’s claims of a crash retrieval program outside the purview of Congress.

Zamone “Z” Perez is a reporter at Military Times. He previously worked at Foreign Policy and Ufahamu Africa. He is a graduate of Northwestern University, where he researched international ethics and atrocity prevention in his thesis. He can be found on Twitter @zamoneperez.

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