Former FBI agent explains why the controversial GOP memo needs to be released

President Donald Trump is expected to approve the release of a controversial memo containing currently classified information.

The memo, written by House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, alleges abuse at the hands of the FBI and Department of Justice.

It’s said to show an abuse of power in the surveillance of Trump campaign officials, specifically former Trump aide Carter Page.

Bob Foley

In an exclusive interview, we asked attorney and former FBI agent Bob Foley, if the memo should be released, “Well, I think it should (be released),” Foley said “Although it does come with certain risks, I think the time has come that the public should know what’s going on with their government.”

On Wednesday the FBI condemned its release.

The ranking Democrat on the house Intelligence Committee, Congressman Adam Schiff, accused Republicans of altering the memo before delivering it to the White House.

“The Democratic side is concerned with the risk to national security. On the Republican side, I think it could affect the Mueller investigation, “Foley said.

Foley also shed some light on what the release of a memo with such classified information could mean for Trump and the Department of Justice, “That information and those sources could be exposed and that of course creates a concern for national security.”

Foley said, “It’s important now to restore the confidence to where it should be.”

FBI director prepared to issue rebuttal if Nunes memo released, Fran Townsend says

(CBS News) FBI director Christopher Wray is prepared to issue a rebuttal if the White House releases Rep. Devin Nunes’s classified memo alleging inappropriate surveillance of the Trump campaign by the FBI and Justice Department, according to CBS News senior national security analyst Fran Townsend. The FBI issued a statement Wednesday that they have “grave concerns” about the memo and the “material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.”

Devin Nunes. Photo: U.S. Congress

Townsend, who served as homeland security adviser to President George W. Bush, told “CBS This Morning” she believes the FBI is worried about both the accuracy of the memo’s contents and what it may reveal about their sources and methods.

“I think we have to remember the Nunes memo is an advocacy piece. It’s not a fact piece. This is Chairman Nunes’ summary of what he believes the abuses are. For that reason, it’s one-sided,” Townsend said.

Townsend, who spent 13 years at the Justice Department, said it’s simply “not possible” for one partisan actor to push through a FISA warrant or to obtain one based on a single piece of evidence.

“There’s multiple internal reviews in the FBI, there’s a legal review at the Justice Department, it goes to the attorney general, or in this case, the deputy who reviews it and then it goes to an independent federal judge who looks at it. No FISA warrant relies on a single piece of evidence. So if the allegation from Chairman Nunes is that they relied solely on the Steele dossier, that’s not possible. It never happens,” she said.

Earlier this week, FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe stepped down amid mounting pressure from the FBI director.

Townsend also addressed a Washington Post report about an internal Justice Department probe focusing on McCabe’s slow handling of a batch of Hillary Clinton’s emails uncovered in the late stages of the 2016 campaign.

“My understanding here from sources inside the FBI was initially they believe there might have been as many as 6,000 e-mails some of which may have been classified and there would have had to been an entire process to review that,” Townsend said. “I think we shouldn’t attribute malice where it might have just been bureaucratic caution.”

Reporter:Brooke Shafer
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