President Trump said Friday that a rebuttal memo written by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee will be released “soon.” The memo was written to provide context to a Republican memo released last week alleging abuses by the FBI and the Justice Department against the Trump campaign.
“It’s going to be released soon. We’re going to be releasing a letter soon,” Trump said at the White House Friday afternoon.
The White House said President Trump met with top Justice Department and FBI officials on Friday to discuss the rebuttal memo authored by House Intelligence Committee Democrats, after Trump signaled the document would be released “soon.”
“This afternoon, the President met with the Director of the FBI, the Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General, and the White House Counsel’s Office to discuss the memorandum from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and receive their input,” White House principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah said in a statement Friday. “The President is weighing his options and will respond soon.”
He was likely referring to the letter sent alongside the copy of the memo from the White House back to House Intelligence. After that, the committee can release the memo.
The Republicans’ memo released one week ago had such a letter, which also details the decision to release the memo and accompanying redactions.
Democrats on the panel say their memo corrects the misleading Republican memo, which accused the FBI and DOJ of using a flimsy set of evidence paid for by Democrats to authorize spying on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.
After originally voting last month to keep the Democratic memo private, House Intelligence voted Monday to make it public.
Following the vote, Trump was given five days to review the memo and then give it back to the committee with redactions, or explicitly object to its release.
The Democratic memo is reportedly 10 pages long; the Republican memo was four.
“He met with the deputy attorney general, Rod Rosenstein, within the last hour to discuss some of the differences between the two memos,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Tuesday. “When [the review is] completed, the president will be given a thorough briefing on the findings of the different organizations and stakeholders that are involved, and will make a determination at that time.”
Later in the day White House principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah said Trump is "weighing his options and will respond soon" in regards to releasing the memo.
A spokesperson for the top Democrat on House Intelligence, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday afternoon.