Local congressman under fire over controversial memo

02 February, 2018, 21:43 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
  • FBI Director Christopher Wray leaving the White House last week

The FBI has clashed publicly with United States President Donald Trump for the first time, condemning a push by Republicans to release a secret memo that purports to show how the bureau and the Justice Department abused their authority to obtain a warrant to spy on a former Trump campaign adviser over alleged Russian Federation links.

President Trump previewed the expected release of a controversial classified memo Friday by claiming that leaders of the FBI and Justice Department are biased against Republicans when it comes to investigations.

"The decision of Chairman Nunes and House Republicans to release a bogus memo has taken the GOP's cover-up campaign to a new, completely unacceptable extreme", said House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. A second White House official said Trump was likely to declassify the congressional memo but the precise method for making it public was still being figured out.

President Donald Trump on Friday authorized the full declassification of a controversial Republican memo - without redactions -that alleges abuses by US intelligence during the 2016 presidential campaign.

Democrats and critics in the intelligence community say the planned release of the memo is a stunt.

"The FBI was provided a limited opportunity to review this memo the day before the committee voted to release it".

Yesterday FBI Director Wray went public with his objections, cutting against the wishes of a president who appears to prize personal loyalty above all.

The FBI stressed its concerns in an extraordinary, unsigned public statement that demonstrated its growing rift with Trump and Nunes, a staunch defender in Congress of the president.

When the committee voted Monday to release the memo spearheaded by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, the committee also rejected a motion from Schiff to release his own memo at the same time. "The Justice Department called it "reckless" and said the memo was incorrect".

Top FBI and Justice Department officials strongly urged against release of the memo out of fear national security could be compromised.

"President Trump should heed the warnings of the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation, and reverse his reported decision to defy longstanding policies regarding the disclosure of classified information", read the statement. The president also reportedly put pressure on the Justice Department and FBI to remove Deputy Director Andrew McCabe from the investigation. As CNN reported, the president sees its release as a way to derail Robert Mueller's Russian Federation investigation once and for all.

Trump, who has previously expressed support of the publication of the memo, read the four-page document Wednesday, sources told ABC News. He defended Nunes to reporters at congressional Republicans' retreat in West Virginia.


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