President Trump reportedly expected to declassify Democratic rebuttal of controversial GOP memo

Open this

US President Donald Trump on Saturday told Democratic lawmakers to refile a memo about the probe into his campaign's possible collusion with Russian Federation, leaving a chance the document could still be released.

On Feb. 2 Trump authorized the release of a Republican memo after the Federal Bureau of Investigation said it had "grave concerns" about its accuracy. Why the military wants 6B from Congress MORE (D-N.Y.) and House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiGOP lawmaker: Dems not standing for Trump is "un-American" Rep. GutiƩrrez: "Complete betrayal" if Pelosi backs budget caps deal without DACA Senate leaders say they're zeroing in on two-year budget deal MORE (D-Calif.) both accused Trump of applying a double standard by approving the release of the GOP memo but not the Democratic one.

Critics say Trump is withholding the memo because it would discredit his assertion that intelligence community has a bias toward him.

Trump explained why he chose to block the memo on Twitter Saturday, calling for Democrats on the panel to "re-do" it. "Told them to re-do and send back in proper form!" he tweeted Saturday.

The memo's release would have capped off a week in which Republicans and Democrats on the committee have publicly fought, with the panel now erecting a wall to separate feuding Republican and Democratic staffers who had long sat side by side. Still, Schiff said, Democrats "look forward to conferring with the agencies to determine how we can properly inform the American people about the misleading attack on law enforcement by the GOP".

On Tuesday, Kelly told reporters that Trump hadn't yet read the 10-page Democratic rebuttal because it's "quite lengthy". Asked if Democrats drafted a memo they knew would be blocked, Schiff said "of course not".

"Also they voted against the release of the Republican memo".

They joined other Trump administration critics in calling the release of the Republican document an effort to undermine the investigation led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into possible links between Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and Russian Federation, as well as possible obstruction of justice.

"However, given the public interest in transparency in these unprecedented circumstances, the President has directed that Justice Department personnel be available to give technical assistance to the Committee, should the Committee wish to revise the February 5th Memorandum to mitigate the risks identified by the Department", McGahn wrote. Republicans argued that the reliance on Steele's material politicized the government's surveillance powers.

That would allow them, he said, to "blame the White House for lack of transparency".

The Democratic memo is believed to elaborate on these points.



Other news