President TrumpDonald TrumpFormer defense secretary Esper sues Pentagon in memoir dispute Biden celebrates start of Hanukkah Fauci says lies, threats are 'noise' MORE said Friday he approved the release of a controversial Republican memo alleging surveillance abuses at the FBI, escalating a feud between the president and the top law enforcement agency over the origins of the Russia investigation.
Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office, Trump suggested the document shows political bias at the FBI that tainted the probe into whether his campaign cooperated with Russia’s election meddling.
“I think it’s a disgrace,” Trump said of the alleged bias. "A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves."
The decision cleared the way for the House Intelligence Committee to release the memo, which it did shortly after noon.
“It was declassified and let’s see what happens,” Trump said.
White House spokesman Raj Shah said copies had been sent to Republican and Democratic members of the Intelligence panel and the office of Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanNo time for the timid: The dual threats of progressives and Trump Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power Cheney takes shot at Trump: 'I like Republican presidents who win re-election' MORE (R-Wis.).
Shah said the White House made no redactions to the document.
Trump’s decision came over objections from the FBI and Justice Department, which said the memo contained misleading information and could compromise sensitive information.
In a rare public statement Wednesday, the FBI said it was “gravely concerned” that critical facts were missing from the document and painted an inaccurate picture of how the bureau sought approval to conduct surveillance in the probe.
Democrats have dismissed the document as a politically motivated attempt by Trump and his GOP allies in Congress to discredit special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerAn unquestioning press promotes Rep. Adam Schiff's book based on Russia fiction Senate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG MORE's Russia investigation.