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The Journal Gazette

Sunday, February 11, 2018 1:00 am

Trump 'unable' to release memo

Associated Press

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump on Saturday accused the Democrats of playing politics with classified information, asserting their memo countering GOP allegations about the conduct of the FBI's Russia probe was a trap.

Citing national security concerns, the White House notified the House Intelligence Committee on Friday that the president was “unable” to declassify the Democratic memo. White House counsel Don McGahn said in a letter to the committee that the memo contains “numerous properly classified and especially sensitive passages” and asked the committee to revise it with the help of the Justice Department.

He said Trump was still “inclined” to release the memo if revisions are made. Trump weighed in with a tweet Saturday.

“The Democrats sent a very political and long response memo which they knew, because of sources and methods (and more), would have to be heavily redacted, whereupon they would blame the White House for lack of transparency,” he tweeted. The meaning of the “(and more)” was not immediately clear.

Trump urged the Democrats to “re-do and send back in proper form!”

The president's rejection of the Democratic memo was in contrast to his enthusiastic embrace of releasing the Republican document, which accuses the FBI and Justice Department of abusing their surveillance powers in obtaining a secret warrant to monitor Carter Page.

The Intelligence Committee's top Democrat, California Rep. Adam Schiff, criticized Trump for treating the two documents differently.