Schiff: Panel to meet with FBI to discuss memo redaction

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., ranking member on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said the panel will meet with the FBI to discuss redacting the Democratic response to a Republican intelligence memo alleging Justice Department surveillance abuses. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI

Feb. 12 (UPI) — House intelligence committee ranking Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff said the panel will meet with the FBI to discuss concerns about its rebuttal to the recently released Republican intelligence memo.

Appearing on CBS’s Face the Nation  on Sunday, Schiff, D-Calif., said the committee and the FBI will work to redact portions of the 10-page memo, which President Donald Trump decided not to release.

“We’re going to sit down with the FBI and go through any concerns that they have,” Schiff said. “And any legitimate concerns over sources and methods, we will redact.”

Trump on Friday blocked the release of the memo which responds to a Republican memo alleging Justice Department surveillance abuses concerning Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

A letter from the White House written by Donald McGahn stated the Democratic memo “contains numerous properly classified and especially sensitive passages.”

On Saturday, Trump explained on Twitter why he chose to block the memo, calling for Democrats on the panel to “re-do” it.

“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,” he wrote. “Told them to re-do and send back in proper form!”

On Feb. 2 Trump authorized the release of a Republican memo after the FBI said it had “grave concerns” about its accuracy.

Schiff said the FBI did note portions of the Democratic memo were classified, but didn’t cite any inaccuracies.

“Unlike the Republicans, we gave the FBI and the Department of Justice our memo even before we took it up into committee, and invited their feedback as to any concerns over sources and methods,” Schiff said.

He also said Trump blocked the memo because it “undermines his claim of vindication” from the probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

“The president doesn’t want the public to see the underlying facts. What is revealed in our memo are quotations from the very FISA application that really demonstrate just how misleading the Republicans have been,” said Schiff.

Schiff said he believes officials “followed all of the correct procedures” in drafting the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to request surveillance on Page.


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