House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi expressed alarm Monday that House Republicans moved to release a memo alleging FBI abuse of surveillance powers, accusing House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes of misleading the public.
“What they’re putting forth is a total misrepresentation. It is false,” Pelosi told CNN’s Chris Cuomo.
The California Democrat said she had reviewed the Nunes memo and its basis as well as the intelligence underlying the memo, and she accused Republicans of crafting a misleading document and misusing sensitive information available to them in order to undercut the ongoing special counsel investigation into potential coordination between associates of President Donald Trump and Russia.
Pelosi said that because the dispute was over classified information, she was unable to prove her claim that the GOP memo paints a false picture about the activity of the intelligence community.
“In order to refute it, you’d have to tell the facts, and the facts are classified,” Pelosi said.
House Republicans have kept up a steady drumbeat calling for the release of a classified memo summarizing the Nunes investigation into the FBI and Justice Department’s use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Despite early pushback from the Justice Department against releasing the memo without review, the intelligence panel moved toward the release. Before the vote Monday, FBI Director Chris Wray was given the chance to review the memo and raise concerns about factual inaccuracies or national security concerns.
The move puts the memo in Trump’s hands, giving him five days to allow or oppose its release.
White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley said on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront” that Trump would meet with his security and legal advisers, and he expressed the President’s interest in “transparency” around the matter.
CNN’s Jeremy Herb and Manu Raju contributed to this report.