Monday, 10 December, 2018

Secret memo hints GOP could be targeting Deputy AG Rosenstein, report says

Melinda Barton | 30 January, 2018, 01:21

Only some members of the House have seen it.

Trump's directive was at odds with his own Justice Department, which had warned that releasing the classified memo written by congressional Republicans would be "extraordinarily reckless" without an official review.

What is the Nunes Memo?

The memo has become one of the biggest controversies swirling around Washington since its existence was revealed just over a week ago.

Four pages and the subject of countless tweets, the memo is the nexus of a bubbling controversy over whether the Justice Department acted improperly in probing Russia's meddling in the 2016 presidential election. In 2013, while living in New York, Page became friends with a supposed Russian diplomat, who turned out to be a Russian spy seeking intelligence on U.S. energy policy. But Newsweek points out that warrants are rarely granted on the basis of one piece of information.

I don't know what the Nunes memo says.

"You also do not hear them suggesting that if [special counsel Robert] Mueller were fired, or [Deputy Attorney General Rod] Rosenstein, which could be more significant because he is overseeing Mueller's investigation, that they would take action", she said. Democrats have characterized the memo as misleading talking points created to smear the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Committee Chairman Devin Nunes announced the last-minute scheduling change Monday morning, adding the panel was to convene to discuss "pending committee business and other matters", but did not specifically say whether a vote would take place regarding the controversial memo.

Secret memo hints GOP could be targeting... "[Mark] Warner (D-Va.) and [Richard] Burr (R-N.C.) are working so closely together on the Senate side, for the most part, has at least preserved that committee", Mitchell concluded.

In 2013, an investigation claimed that a Russian spy had allegedly tried to recruit him although Page was never charged with any wrongdoing and has denied he would ever have cooperated with Russian intelligence officials, according to the New York Times. But, as a former government national security lawyer, I think it's important to emphasize that, if the executive branch were to follow the process that has been reported-i.e., allowing the Congress to release the memo without any executive branch classification review-it would be deeply problematic. Remember Geraldo Rivera and the infamous Mystery of Al Capone's Vaults? A vote on releasing that memo to the public was expected this week.

The Department of Justice has said that releasing the document would not comply with the terms struck with Republican Speaker Paul Ryan's office when the agreement was made to hand over the information to form the Nunes memo. If he doesn't, its contents will be published.

Rosenstein's commitment to shielding the investigation from interference has reportedly irked Trump as well, and the president has complained about the independence of the Justice Department in recent weeks.