Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas, said Sunday he does not believe that the controversial Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act memo vindicates President Trump from special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin in the lead-up to the 2016 election.
"I don't," Hurd told ABC when asked whether Trump and his former campaign aides were absolved from any problematic conduct in light of the memo being made public.
"I don't agree with some of my colleagues that say, who are always using the word 'explosive.' I'm not shocked that elected officials are using hyperbole and exaggerations," the Texas Republican continued.
Does @HurdOnTheHill agree with Pres. Trump that the House GOP memo vindicates him in the Russia investigation? “I don’t” he tells @GStephanopoulos. #ThisWeek pic.twitter.com/lokrB4sOPk— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) February 4, 2018
Trump wrote on Twitter Saturday that the House Intelligence Committee memo outlining alleged abuses of surveillance powers by the Justice Department and FBI "totally vindicates" him in Mueller's Russia investigation.
"But the Russian Witch Hunt goes on and on. Their [sic] was no Collusion and there was no Obstruction (the word now used because, after one year of looking endlessly and finding NOTHING, collusion is dead). This is an American disgrace!" Trump tweeted.
Though Hurd, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, said Trump was yet to be exonerated, he stood by the GOP-drafted memo.
He explained that it was important to release the memo because when DOJ and the FBI applied to gather information on Trump campaign foreign affairs adviser Carter Page they relied on the Trump-Russia dossier, which "they knew ... wasn't verified."
.@HurdOnTheHill tells @GStephanopoulos the FBI and Justice Department knew information in the Steele dossier “wasn’t verified” when using it to apply for a surveillance warrant on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. #ThisWeek pic.twitter.com/C2yu8OjOKe— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) February 4, 2018
Hurd also pushed back on assertions that the memo was a political attack on Mueller and law enforcement agencies, before adding Republican members of the committee voted down making a Democratic counter memo public because its contents would have led to an "erosion" of national security.
“The [Democrats’] information wasn’t ready to go, and so we decided to release ours. People can criticize that decision,” Hurd said.
Why didn’t the House Intel Committee wait for the Democratic memo? GOP member @HurdOnTheHill tells @GStephanopoulos “The [Democrats’] information wasn’t ready to go, and we decided to release ours. People can criticize that decision.” #ThisWeek pic.twitter.com/m08SkekbTf— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) February 4, 2018