Nunes memo wasn't meant to win over everyone -- just 34 senators

Rep. Adam Schiff of California panels top Democrat

Rep. Adam Schiff of California panels top Democrat

US President Donald Trump has voiced his accusations against Adam Schiff, top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.

Democrats said the four-page Republican document mischaracterises highly sensitive classified information and was meant to undermine Special Counsel Robert Mueller's criminal probe into possible collusion between Moscow and the Trump campaign to sway the 2016 presidential election.

Despite the fact that Rep. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, recused himself from the Russian Federation investigation previous year, he recently drafted an unsubstantiated memo attempting to smear the reputations of several people involved with Mueller's investigation into Trump's campaign team.

- He misstated former director James Comey's remarks about the dossier.

The House Intelligence Committee is expected to vote during a meeting on Monday on whether to publicly release the Democrats' rebuttal memo.

The California congressman said it would be "very hard" for the Trump administration now to block its release. The committee rejected that move last week, with one Republican member saying revisions are needed so the memo will not endanger national security. We now know enough to speculate that the Schiff rebuttal - which wouldn't exist in the first place if Nunes hadn't embarked on this charade with the White House's blessing - may actually give us new information about the genesis of the Russian Federation probe that only further underscores its legitimacy.

The tantalizing possibility that this memo would contain actual, accurate damning evidence that the investigation was corrupt just vanished.

The President then used another tweet to laud the Chairman of the Intelligence Committee, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA). "People can criticize that - that decision, but I think providing oversight and shining a light on these issues is important".

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"I think it is fair to ask the deputy attorney general what did you know at the time you signed one of the applications".

Representative Devin Nunes, the committee's Republican chairman who commissioned the Republican memo, declined comment.

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and some other prominent Republicans in Congress say the Nunes memo is separate from the Mueller investigation and should not be seen as an attempt to undermine Mueller. Either the Schiff memo will be released, which will produce a couple of news cycles about the ham-handed GOP effort to protect President Trump at all costs; or it will be kept secret, and the naked partisanship of their indefensible campaign to attack the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Justice Department will become even more obvious.

On Dec. 7, the House Ethics Committee closed its investigation of Nunes, even though, according to the Atlantic, "the committee was never able to obtain or review the classified information at the heart of the inquiry".

President Trump walks outside the West Wing to depart the South Lawn of the White House by Marine One, in Washington, DC, Feb. 2.

The release of the document came as Republicans, Democrats, and the President were still squabbling over the release of last week's memo, which Democrats charged was lacking in context.

The No. 2 Democrat in the Senate says Republicans may be setting the stage for a "constitutional crisis" if they use the Nunes memo to end the special counsel's Russian Federation investigation. Even as Democrats described it as inaccurate, some Republicans quickly cited the memo - released over the objections of the FBI and Justice Department - in their arguments that Mueller's investigation is politically tainted. And Democratic lawmakers say it raises "serious questions about the integrity" of the rule-making process. The dossier compiled on Trump by former British spy Christopher Steele formed an "essential part" of the FISA warrant obtained to surveil former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, but the court was not told the dossier was a fundamentally political document, Limbaugh said.

The memo claimed the only reason the warrant on Mr Page was Mr Steele's dossier, despite the former MI-6 agent's anti-Trump bias.

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