House Intelligence Committee ranking member Adam Schiff, D-Calif., has accused Republicans of secretly altering a memo sent to the White House that alleges misconduct by the FBI in the investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.
In a letter sent to committee chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., on Wednesday, Schiff claimed the GOP made “material changes” to the version sent to the White House that were never reviewed or approved by the committee.
“This is deeply troubling, because it means that the Committee Majority transmitted to the White House an altered version of its classified document that is materially different than the version on which the Committee voted,” Schiff said.
He added, “The White House has therefore been reviewing a document since Monday night that the Committee never approved for public release.”
The memo commissioned by Nunes reportedly alleges abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in the FBI’s monitoring of a former campaign adviser to President Donald Trump.
The FBI released a statement on Wednesday expressing “grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.”
Schiff called the changes “substantive” but claimed they do not correct the “profound distortions and inaccuracies” in the document.
The top Democrat on the committee urged Nunes to withdraw the memo and hold a new vote to release the modified document to the public.
However, Nunes spokesman Jack Langer dismissed Schiff’s request, claiming only minor edits were made to the memo.
“The vote to release the memo was absolutely procedurally sound, and in accordance with House and Committee rules,” Langer said.
He added, “To suggest otherwise is a bizarre distraction from the abuses detailed in the memo, which the public will hopefully soon be able to read for themselves.”
The latest dispute over the memo comes after White House Chief of Staff John Kelly predicted that the document would be released soon.
“It will be released here pretty quick, I think, and the whole world can see it,” Kelly said during an interview with Fox News Radio on Wednesday.