Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., on Thursday implored President Trump not to release the classified memo drafted by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and his staff.
“President Trump should heed the warnings of the Justice Department and FBI, and reverse his reported decision to defy longstanding policies regarding the disclosure of classified information," the outgoing Arizona Republican wrote in a joint statement issued with Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del.
The pair from the Senate Judiciary Committee said the White House "risks undermining U.S. intelligence-gathering efforts, politicizing Congress’ oversight role, and eroding confidence in our institutions of government" if Trump doesn't prevent the memo from becoming publicly available.
Releasing the memo has become a rallying point for the conservative wing of the Republican Party, particularly in the House.
While Democrats oppose its unveiling the public, at least one other Senate Republican, John Thune of South Dakota, has expressed concern about the memo's release. His standpoint is to allow the Senate the ability to view it before Trump allows its release.
Should Trump choose to block the release of the memo, the House could still hold a vote to override the decision. But Trump has indicated he intends to allow the public release of the four-page document on Friday and return it to the House Intelligence Committee with only "technical edits" made at the request of the FBI so it can be disseminated.
The memo allegedly details how the DOJ and the FBI abused surveillance powers to gather information on former Trump campaign associate Carter Page.
Reports Thursday suggest Trump believes the report's distribution will damage the special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe.
FBI Director Christopher Wray recently viewed the memo, and his bureau issued a rare public statement Wednesday saying it had “grave concerns” about the report's accuracy.
GOP members of the House Intelligence Committee used an obscure congressional rule Monday to send the document to the president, giving him a maximum of five days to object to its release.
Democrats have condemned the memo as nothing more than Republican "talking points" that could lead to a "false narrative" without the proper context.