Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, shot back at President Trump for calling the Democrats' rebuttal memo to the Republican report on alleged FISA abuses "very political."
"Mr. President, what you call 'political' are actually called facts, and your concern for sources and methods would be more convincing if you hadn’t decided to release the GOP memo ('100%') before reading it and over the objections of the FBI," Schiff, D-Calif., tweeted Saturday.
Mr. President, what you call “political” are actually called facts, and your concern for sources and methods would be more convincing if you hadn’t decided to release the GOP memo (“100%”) before reading it and over the objections of the FBI. https://t.co/L48kAQOztL— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) February 10, 2018
He was responding the president, who tweeted earlier in the day that the Democratic memo, which Trump declined to have released in its current form Friday, was designed to contain sensitive information in such a way that made it a political weapon.
"The Democrats sent a very political and long response memo which they knew, because of sources and methods (and more), would have to be heavily redacted, whereupon they would blame the White House for lack of transparency," Trump said in a tweet Saturday morning. "Told them to re-do and send back in proper form!"
The Democratic memo has been sent back to the House Intelligence Committee for a second look.
Democrats say their 10-page memo provides much-needed context and details missing from the GOP memo released the Friday before last, which Trump allowed without redactions despite protests from Democrats, the Justice Department, and the FBI. That memo, put together by an effort spearheaded by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., details alleged surveillance abuse by the U.S. government that allowed spying on a member of the Trump campaign.
In a letter transmitted to the House Intelligence Committee late Friday, White House counsel Don McGahn explained Trump was “inclined to declassify” the Democrats' memo, but he wouldn't be doing so over national security concerns, following a review by top spy and law enforcement officials, including Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
McGahn also said Trump directed the Justice Department to give “technical assistance” to the intelligence committee if they decide they want to “revise” the memo to “mitigate the risks identified," and that the White House is ready to review any new draft offered in the future.