Last night, the ranking — and rankest — minority member of the House Intelligence Committee released what can only be described as a desperate Hail Mary pass to try to, if not prevent, then at least create confusion about the memo developed by the House Intelligence Committee staff alleging abuses of the FISA warrant application process. In the past I’ve said that the memo alleged abuses in the use of the Trump dossier but Chairman Nunes’ statement last night made it clear that abuse of the FISA process is the thrust of the memo.
Schiff, who seems to have become the Alex Jones of the never-Trump movement, released a memo that claimed Nunes had made unspecified changes to the memo, therefore, the memo was not what the House Committee agreed to release and the planned release is against committee rules.
This is nuts on several levels.
First, no one outside the committee and White House has seen the memo so it is impossible to determine the truth or falsity of the statement. You have to believe Schiff who has been fingered as the source of several patently false leaks, most notably about the timing of an email alerting Donald Trump, Jr. to the existence of the DNC emails released by Wikileaks.
Second, the memo was sent to the White House with the expectation that changes would be made. That is what review is all about. Schiff and his fan club were incensed at the thought that Justice and FBI wouldn’t be able to make changes and now they are incensed that changes might have been made.
Anyway, the House Intelligence Committee has now responded:
Just talked with House Intel source. Said total changes to memo were: A) Unknown number of 'grammatical and clarifying' fixes. B) One change requested by FBI due to sources & methods concerns. C) One two-word change requested by Democrats for accuracy. House Intel GOP statement: pic.twitter.com/ZkNuMBoLZK
— Byron York (@ByronYork) February 1, 2018
This memo is going to be released. The never-Trumpers and other advocates of secret government are going to have to get used to the idea.