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Trump blocks Democratic memo from Intelligence Committee

11 February 2018

The memo was reviewed by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Justice (DOJ), after which the agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which falls under the DOJ, provided their recommendations to the President.

Former Donald Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski excoriated Democrats during a "Fox and Friends" segment Saturday while weighing in on President Donald Trump's decision to block their rebuttal to Rep. Devin Nunes' (R-CA) controversial memo.

The letter says they enclosed a version of the memo, which was not released, marked to highlight information they thought could endanger "protection of intelligence sources and methods, ongoing investigations and other similarly sensitive information".

Trump contended it was a ploy to allow Democrats to "blame the White House for lack of transparency".

Democrats on the intelligence committee complained the Republicans' four-page memo cherry-picked facts and explained events out of context and was thus not accurate.

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In a letter to the House Intelligence Committee, White House Counsel Donald McGahn said although the President is "inclined to declassify" the Democratic memo, he is "unable to do so at this time" because it contains "numerous properly classified and especially sensitive passages".

President Donald Trump has for now stopped the release of the Democrats' counter-memo, rebutting Republican assertions over the Federal Bureau of Investigation's "bias" and "surveillance abuses" targeting a former Trump campaign aide as part of its probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 United States presidential election.

Before the Republican memo's release, a White House official told reporters that Trump supported making it public because he favored "transparency".

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., accused Trump of obstructing justice by releasing one document and refusing to disclose another.

FBI Director Christopher Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, in a letter to McGahn released by the White House on Friday, expressed concerns about the release of portions of the Democratic memo.

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The Democratic memo reportedly rebuts claims in the GOP document that investigators misled a judge when seeking a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant to spy on former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

Trump has said the GOP memo "vindicates" him in the ongoing Russian Federation investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, has read the classified information both memos are based on.

Trump followed up with a tweet Saturday saying Democrats "knew, because of sources and methods (and more)" that it could not be declassified and released in full.

The U.S. intelligence community has concluded, and members of Trump's cabinet agree, that the Russians interfered in our election and plan to do so again.

There was a meeting about an hour earlier in the West Wing about the fate of the Democratic memo.

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Trump blocks Democratic memo from Intelligence Committee