WEATHER AUTHORITY : Flash Flood Watch View Alerts

White House postures over Nunes memo

President Donald Trump's chief of staff ...

Posted: Jan 31, 2018 11:41 AM
Updated: Jan 31, 2018 11:41 AM

President Donald Trump's chief of staff said on Wednesday the White House would soon allow for the release of a highly controversial Republican memo alleging the FBI abused its surveillance tools.

John Kelly, speaking on a Fox News radio program, said Trump and his team were reviewing the document produced by Rep. Devin Nunes, R-California, and would open it to the public shortly.

"The memo came over, we've got our folks, our national security lawyers in the White House that work for me and the President, slicing and dicing it, looking at it so we know what it means and what it understands," he told host Brian Kilmeade.

"It'll be released here pretty quick, I think. And the whole world can see it," Kelly said, adding that he'd viewed the memo himself.

The announcement came as questions mounted about the White House's own role in creating the document. Trump's spokeswoman said Wednesday morning she didn't know whether any West Wing aides were involved in the memo's production.

"We have certainly coordinated with members of Congress as is appropriate. As to specifics on this, I just don't know the answer," press secretary Sarah Sanders said on CNN's "New Day."

"I'm not aware of any conversations or coordination with Congressman Nunes," Sanders said.

The memo has caused a firestorm in Washington and is the latest chapter in the ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Republicans claim the memo needs to be released because it shows abuse of power by law enforcement officials, while Democrats maintain it is nothing more than an attempt to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.

"We are still going to complete the legal and national security review that has to take place before putting something out publicly," Sanders said Wednesday. "That is the place where we are right now."

She added that the interagency review will be "taking place at the White House today."

White House aides have long stood behind the interagency review as a way to deflect questions about the controversial memo. But Trump undercut that talking point on Tuesday by telling Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-South Carolina, who urged him to release the memo, not to worry.

"Don't worry, 100%," Trump was overheard responding as he departed the House chamber following his State of the Union address. "Can you imagine?"

His remarks were caught on a live camera feed from the House floor.

Sanders said on CNN Wednesday that there is "always a chance" Trump could decide not to release the memo but added that she was unaware whether Trump had actually read the document.

However, hours before Trump's comments to Duncan, Sanders issued a statement saying there are "no current plans" to release the memo.

The House Intelligence Committee voted along party lines on Monday to release the classified document, which was then quickly sent to the White House for review. The memo claims the FBI abused the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act over its use of the opposition research dossier on Trump and Russia as part of the case to obtain a FISA warrant on former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page.

The process could last up to five days, according to White House officials, but it is possible that they could approve publishing the document sooner.

To date, though, White House, National Security Council and intelligence agency officials have declined to comment on what goes into such a review process. An official told CNN that the document is currently being reviewed and the findings could be presented to Trump as early as Wednesday.

Trump, who has been under a constant pressure campaign from Republican lawmakers and conservative media to release the memo, is eager to get it into the public eye, two people familiar with the matter tell CNN. But he decided against releasing it before delivering his State of the Union address, given that it would likely have stepped on the message he was hoping to send.

A decision by Trump to release the memo would pit him against his own Justice Department, which has warned that doing so would be "extraordinarily reckless."

FBI Director Chris Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein made that case to Kelly during a meeting on Monday, but it appears that Trump, given his comments on Tuesday, is undeterred by the warning.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 94573

Reported Deaths: 2870
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7017157
DeSoto544859
Harrison378073
Jackson341869
Madison321886
Rankin320276
Lee263368
Jones243878
Forrest240971
Washington218671
Lafayette211639
Lauderdale2015124
Bolivar179765
Oktibbeha175950
Lamar163934
Neshoba1548104
Panola144927
Sunflower142945
Lowndes141257
Warren138250
Leflore137781
Pontotoc124116
Pike121749
Monroe119966
Scott116825
Copiah116433
Coahoma113627
Holmes109458
Marshall108015
Lincoln107353
Grenada106835
Yazoo104130
Simpson101544
Union98324
Tate95837
Leake94138
Adams92236
Wayne87721
Pearl River86952
Marion84234
Prentiss82617
Covington80822
Itawamba78021
Alcorn77611
Tallahatchie76221
Newton76123
George75513
Winston73119
Tishomingo66537
Chickasaw66224
Tippah65017
Attala64325
Walthall59525
Clay58217
Hancock56921
Clarke56342
Jasper55915
Noxubee54515
Smith52614
Calhoun50712
Tunica48113
Montgomery45821
Claiborne45616
Lawrence42712
Yalobusha41914
Perry41318
Quitman3755
Humphreys37415
Stone36012
Greene35417
Webster33213
Jefferson Davis32911
Amite31410
Carroll31412
Wilkinson30118
Kemper28615
Sharkey26313
Jefferson2439
Benton2232
Franklin1913
Choctaw1806
Issaquena1033
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 132452

Reported Deaths: 2335
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson19230342
Mobile13192291
Montgomery8711175
Madison767475
Tuscaloosa7355114
Lee576560
Shelby576550
Baldwin512449
Marshall388943
Calhoun339040
Etowah338447
Morgan322626
Houston275322
Elmore258647
DeKalb237519
St. Clair225535
Walker225080
Talladega209927
Limestone202119
Cullman186819
Dallas176226
Franklin174828
Russell17302
Autauga171425
Lauderdale166233
Colbert162126
Blount157314
Escambia157325
Jackson152711
Chilton151328
Dale134143
Covington133427
Coffee12898
Pike11729
Chambers114042
Tallapoosa113984
Clarke106317
Marion95228
Butler91138
Barbour8487
Winston71812
Marengo70219
Lowndes65127
Pickens63914
Bibb63510
Randolph62413
Hale61628
Lawrence60320
Bullock59314
Geneva5844
Monroe5798
Cherokee57516
Clay5537
Washington54913
Perry5396
Conecuh53011
Wilcox53011
Crenshaw52532
Henry4805
Macon47920
Fayette4299
Sumter42319
Lamar3552
Choctaw34612
Cleburne3346
Greene30215
Coosa1673
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Overcast
65° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 65°
Columbus
Overcast
72° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 72°
Oxford
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 58°
Feels Like: 63°
Starkville
Overcast
70° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 70°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather