Trump says exposing FBI Russia 'hoax' may be 'crowning achievement' of presidency

Remigio Civitarese
Settembre 19, 2018

Additionally, Trump has ordered DOJ and FBI to release all text messages related to the Russian Federation investigation - in unredacted form - of former FBI Director James Comey, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, former FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok, former FBI attorney Lisa Page and Ohr.

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant used by the FBI to monitor short-term campaign volunteer Carter Page's communications has been at the center of the controversy since evidence surfaced during the House Intelligence Committee's investigation on Russian Federation revealed that the unverified dossier compiled by former British spy, Christopher Steele, was the main body of evidence used by the bureau to obtain the warrant.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders cited "reasons of transparency" for the president's decision, as well as requests from Congressional investigative committees in a statement confirming the action.

On Monday, President Donald Trump's administration released a statement demanding the Department of Justice release all documents pertaining to the Russia Investigation.

Democrats in the House believe this is just another attempt by President Trump to selectively release documents which will strengthen his own defense in the Special Counsel investigation. The documents were sent to the "wrong person", ABC's sources said, and the documents sat untouched in the field office for weeks, as counterintelligence officials in D.C. began looking into former Trump campaign associate Carter Page and chairman Paul Manafort.

Democrats say that Trump and his allies are politicising a law enforcement investigation in order to protect the White House.

As for the president's order Tuesday, Meadows said, "declassifying the documents is the only true way for the American people to understand the elevation of concern that members have had for months". The FBI released a heavily redacted version of the application earlier this year, as intelligence experts maintain that sources and methods could be compromised if too much information is revealed.

William Banks, a Syracuse University national security expert, said that by making the information public, Trump is essentially overruling the decisions of career officials intent on keeping it from foreign intelligence services, terrorist groups and other adversaries.

So too were Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, former Federal Bureau of Investigation officials who have come under scrutiny for messages they exchanged that were critical of Trump. They're less willing to provide information.

"The Privacy Act is a big hurdle here unless Congress takes control of the materials and tries to release them themselves", Banks said.

Trump's demands mark his latest effort to turn up the heat on the Justice Department, whom he and his Republican allies have accused of running a tainted probe into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

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