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Trump Authorizes Release of Controversial GOP-Nunes Memo
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2 Feb 2018 01:09 PM EST

-by Trista McKenzie, Contributing Writer; Image: Rep. Devin Nunes (Image Source: Public Domain)

A controversial GOP intelligence memo that alleges FBI abuses of its surveillance authority and questions the integrity of the Russia probe has been released by House Republicans, with the approval of Donald Trump.

At the House-Senate GOP retreat in West Virginia, Republicans expected to speak on the tax bill and their 2018 plans, but the four-page document continued to hold the press's attention.

The memo, from the GOP as well as House Intelligence Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, claims that then-Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe told the House Intelligence Committee that a surveillance warrant would not have been sought for a Trump campaign aide without the Christopher Steele dossier, CNN reports.

Its release will likely put further strain on the relationship between the Trump administration and the Justice Department and intelligence community, both of which were against the memo release as it was based on classified information. It also heightens the partisan fight over investigations into Russian election meddling and possible collusion.

The FBI issued a public warning on Wednesday that the document leaves out information that could cause inaccuracies.

The memo states that the FISA court granted a warrant to monitor former foreign policy adviser Carter Page and approved three renewals, and that the FBI used an opposition research dossier on Trump and Russia penned by ex-British intelligence agent Christopher Steele to obtain the warrant without stating that the dossier was partially funded by Democratic sources. It also claims that Steele had personal anti-Trump motivations and that senior DOJ officials knew about his bias.

White House spokesman Raj Shah noted that the memo was previously sent to minority and majority members in the House Intelligence Committee as well as to House Speaker Paul Ryan's office. He added that the White House requested no redactions.

Trump also implied that the document proved that the FBI had a political bias and called it a "disgrace" and that some people in the FBI should be "ashamed of themselves."

A full text of the memo can be found online.

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