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Top Judiciary Democrat says Justice Department denied access to intel memo

The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee says the Justice Department as well as the FBI have been denied acc...

Posted: Jan 23, 2018 7:58 PM
Updated: Jan 23, 2018 7:58 PM

The top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee says the Justice Department as well as the FBI have been denied access to the Republican House Intelligence Committee memo alleging FBI surveillance abuses, in the latest sign that the panel doesn't plan to share the classified memo ahead of an anticipated vote to make it public as early as next week.

Judiciary Committee top Democrat Jerry Nadler of New York said it was "profoundly unfair" that the memo on alleged FISA abuses wasn't being shared with the FBI or Justice Department, in a letter sent Tuesday to Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia.

Rep. Jerry Nadler's letter signaled a growing political fight on Capitol Hill over a memo

The memo is spearheaded by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes

Nadler's letter signaled a growing political fight on Capitol Hill over the memo spearheaded by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, a California Republican. Nadler called the memo a "profoundly misleading document" and said the Judiciary Committee members should view the memo's classified source materials.

"You and I have had the opportunity to review many of the documents that the intelligence committee claims are the basis for its memo," Nadler wrote to his committee's chairman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia. "Those materials tell a very different story than the conspiracy theory concocted by Chairman Nunes and being repeated in the press."

An FBI spokesman told CNN on Sunday that the agency "has requested to receive a copy of the memo in order to evaluate the information and take appropriate steps if necessary" and "to date, the request has been declined." The Justice Department declined comment on the memo.

But Republicans have said that the Justice Department and FBI should not be given access, given who is involved.

"I'm not in favor of looking at DOJ or FBI weighing in -- they've been less than cooperative on a number of fronts," said Rep. Mark Meadows, the head of the House Freedom Caucus and a vocal Republican pushing for public release of the memo.

"I think given the seriousness of this one and the players, that this should go to the President first," said Rep. Mike Conaway, the Texas Republican in charge of the Intelligence Committee's Russia investigation.

Meanwhile, Republicans on the Intelligence Committee say they're anticipating a vote to override the executive branch's declassification process to release the memo - and potentially some of the intelligence materials supporting it - as early as next week when Congress returns from its one-week recess, according to several Republicans on the panel.

Last week, the committee voted along party lines to allow all House members to view the classified memo, and to date roughly 200 Republicans have done so, along with a handful of Democrats, Conaway said.

"Last count we had we're pushing 200," he said.

Under the House Intelligence Committee rules, the next step is for the panel to vote on releasing the memo. If the committee votes to do so as is expected, the memo would be sent to the President to decide whether to make it public - potentially setting up a clash between the White House and the FBI and Justice Department, which to date have not been allowed to view the Nunes document.

Republicans allege that the four-page memo, which was prepared by Nunes and Republican committee staff, reveals FBI abuses of the FISA surveillance law. CNN has reported that the document alleges that judge who signed off on FISA warrants for members of Trump's team was not given full information about the opposition research dossier on President Donald Trump and Russia, including the Democratic sources funding the research.

Democrats charge that the Nunes' memo is skewed and contains inaccuracies intended to undermine special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Trump's team.

Nunes, Goodlatte and Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy have met to discuss what should be released publicly under the Intelligence Committee process, with many Republicans on board to move quickly to make the memo public.

One of the lingering questions for Democrats is what intelligence supporting the memo is not physically in the committee's possession. Under an agreement struck between the committee and Justice Department earlier this month, Nunes was given "access" to materials related to the dossier that he had been seeking, where the documents could be reviewed but not taken from FBI and Justice Department possession.

Rep. Chris Stewart, a Utah Republican on the Intelligence Committee, said there was some sensitive intelligence related to the memo that could not be made public, but he suggested much of it could be.

"This is by and large a law enforcement undertaking, and some of it has underpinnings in sensitive national security issues, but most of it doesn't," Stewart said. "Some of those things you won't see. The vast majority that you will."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 320107

Reported Deaths: 7378
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22291269
Hinds20741421
Harrison18444317
Rankin13917282
Jackson13731249
Madison10270224
Lee10060176
Jones8473167
Forrest7834153
Lauderdale7263242
Lowndes6523150
Lamar636088
Lafayette6314121
Washington5426137
Bolivar4841133
Panola4671110
Oktibbeha466398
Pearl River4606147
Marshall4574105
Warren4440121
Pontotoc425973
Monroe4161136
Union415877
Neshoba4064180
Lincoln4009113
Hancock387087
Leflore3516125
Tate342586
Sunflower339491
Pike3372111
Alcorn327473
Scott320374
Yazoo314371
Adams308386
Itawamba305178
Copiah299966
Coahoma298984
Simpson298589
Tippah292268
Prentiss284261
Leake272274
Marion271280
Covington267283
Wayne264842
Grenada264087
George252251
Newton248963
Tishomingo232268
Winston230181
Jasper222148
Attala215173
Chickasaw210559
Holmes190374
Stone188733
Clay187954
Tallahatchie180041
Clarke178980
Calhoun174232
Yalobusha167840
Smith164134
Walthall135447
Greene131834
Lawrence131224
Montgomery128643
Noxubee128034
Perry127538
Amite126342
Carroll122330
Webster115032
Jefferson Davis108334
Tunica108127
Claiborne103130
Benton102325
Humphreys97533
Kemper96729
Franklin85023
Quitman82316
Choctaw79118
Wilkinson69632
Jefferson66328
Sharkey50917
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 549013

Reported Deaths: 11311
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson810461571
Mobile42145831
Madison35718525
Tuscaloosa26179458
Shelby25626254
Montgomery25089614
Baldwin21901314
Lee16287176
Calhoun14724327
Morgan14639285
Etowah14183364
Marshall12454230
Houston10791287
Elmore10301214
Limestone10188157
St. Clair10161251
Cullman9958201
Lauderdale9612250
DeKalb8977190
Talladega8462184
Walker7341280
Autauga7242113
Jackson6953113
Blount6950139
Colbert6415140
Coffee5638127
Dale4930116
Russell454941
Chilton4478116
Franklin431782
Covington4279122
Tallapoosa4144155
Escambia401880
Chambers3728124
Dallas3610158
Clarke353161
Marion3245107
Pike314578
Lawrence3134100
Winston283572
Bibb268564
Geneva258481
Marengo250665
Pickens237062
Barbour234559
Hale227178
Butler224671
Fayette218962
Henry194443
Randolph187644
Cherokee187345
Monroe180641
Washington170739
Macon163051
Clay160159
Crenshaw156357
Cleburne153644
Lamar146937
Lowndes142254
Wilcox126930
Bullock124542
Conecuh113630
Coosa111629
Perry108626
Sumter105832
Greene93634
Choctaw62125
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Columbus
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Oxford
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Starkville
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High pressure will continue to dominate our weather forecast over the next few days. This will at least keep our area dry for our Wednesday and maybe a little room for a few showers on our Thursday, however nothing major.
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