US House committee unanimously votes to release Democratic memo

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Washington, Feb 6 (IANS) The House Intelligence Committee voted unanimously to make public the Democratic memo rebutting Republican allegations that the FBI abused surveillance laws, the media reported.

The classified memo from Representative Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, is written to push back against the central allegations of the Republican memo from Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, reports CNN.

Nunes’ memo was released on February 3 and alleges the Federal Bureau of Investigation abused the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) process in obtaining a surveillance warrant on President Donald Trump’s former campaign adviser Carter Page.

After the vote on Monday night, Schiff told reporters that the committee also agreed to send the Democratic memo to the FBI and Justice Department to play a role in the Executive Branch approval process.

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Schiff and other Democrats charge that Nunes’ memo is inaccurate and misleading, and the 10-page Schiff memo goes point-by-point to counter the charges in the Nunes memo.

The Representative said that he has also given his memo to the Justice Department for review.

The Republican-led House Intelligence Committee blocked the release of the Democratic memo at its meeting last week, saying members had just been presented with the document, instead moving forward with the four-page Nunes memo that now has been de-classified after Trump agreed to its release on February 3. CNN reported.

The panel did, however, agree last week to let the full House review the Schiff memo in a classified setting.

Republicans leaving the closed-door meeting on Monday said they support its release, which is now in the hands of the White House.

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Following Monday’s vote, a White House official said the Schiff memo will be “read and reviewed” in a five-day period.



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