The Republican-led House Intelligence Committee voted Monday to invoke an obscure congressional rule to force the release a classified memo written by Republicans that outlines what they say are abuses of federal surveillance authorities.
Ranking member Adam Schiff, D-Calif., told reporters that the Republican majority voted Monday night to make the four-page GOP memo public, but voted against the idea of releasing a counter memo written by the Democratic minority.
“[House Intel] voted to release GOP memo publicly and to release the Dem memo for viewing by Members of House of Representatives,” committee spokesman Jack Langer confirmed with the Washington Examiner.
The four-page memo put together by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., allegedly details how Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein sought the renewal of a federal court-authorized surveillance warrant against former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.
Also reportedly named in the memo are outgoing FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe and former FBI Director James Comey.
By invoking House Rules 10 — which the Congressional Research Service has said has never been invoked before — the memo can now be made public so long as President Trump does not explicitly object within the next five days. The White House has indicated Trump might support the release of the memo, but wasn't specific on Monday about how Trump would decide.
The Department of Justice warned the committee last week against releasing it, as neither its top officials nor those in the FBI had viewed it.
However, it was reported that FBI Director Christopher Wray was allowed to view the memo in the House's safe spaces over the weekend.
Democrats have said the memo is misleading and mischaracterizing — it also reportedly accuses top FBI brass of abusing the surveillance warrant process known as FISA — and said they will put together and vote to release a classified memo of their own to fill in the blanks.
“We have crossed a deeply regrettable line in this committee,” Schiff said.
The transcript from the committee's Monday night debate over both memos will also be made public, Schiff revealed.