by Countable | 2.26.18
After two weeks of scrutiny by intelligence officials, the memo authored by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee has been released. The memo is a rebuttal to one prepared by the Republican chair of the committee, Devin Nunes, and his staff, which accused the FBI of targeting former Trump campaign staffer Carter Page for surveillance for political reasons.
At issue in both memos is the use of a dossier as a source in the investigation into Page and as part of the FISA application that allowed surveillance of Page to occur. The dossier was prepared by Michael Steele on behalf of Fusion GPS as opposition research on then-candidate Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential campaign.
The GOP memo alleges the FISA application and investigation were primarily fueled by the dossier and thus were politically biased from the start.
The Democratic memo rebuts this claim, and maintains that multiple sources were used which corroborated core aspects of the Steele dossier. Also, it points to text in the application which informed the judge the dossier was "gathered through politically motivated means" per protocol.
The GOP memo was authorized by the White House to be released without any redactions, despite concerns from intelligence officials about its contents and omissions. The Democratic memo was heavily redacted because White House counsel argued that it contained "numerous properly classified and especially sensitive passages".
Upon release of the Democratic memo, the GOP staff of the House Intelligence Committee released another point-by-point rebuttal of the Democratic memo.
President Trump took to Twitter to offer his take on the Democrat's document:
The Democrat memo response on government surveillance abuses is a total political and legal BUST. Just confirms all of the terrible things that were done. SO ILLEGAL!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2018
Read all three memos (links above) and decide for yourself what you think about this they said/they said conflict, which has deeply divided the historically bipartisan House Intelligence Committee.
Have you read all three memos? Do you think, given the information in them, that the application for surveillance of Carter Page was justified? Did the FBI overstep and rely overmuch on a politically motivated document, or did they do due diligence and provide appropriate levels of corroborating support for their surveillance? Does this finally put the whole thing to rest, or not?
Tell us in the comments what you think, then use the Take Action button to tell your reps!
— Asha Sanaker
(Photo Credit: CNN via Twitter)
Written by Countable