Trump: Allegations in memo 'a disgrace'

President TrumpDonald TrumpMyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News Haaland, Native American leaders press for Indigenous land protections Simone Biles, Vince Lombardi and the courage to walk away 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."

ADVERTISEMENT

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 RyanRealClearPolitics reporter says Freedom Caucus shows how much GOP changed under Trump Juan Williams: Biden's child tax credit is a game-changer Trump clash ahead: Ron DeSantis positions himself as GOP's future in a direct-mail piece 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. 

ADVERTISEMENT

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) MuellerSenate 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 Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE's Russia investigation.

Democrats and some law enforcement officials fear Trump might use the memo as basis to fire Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinWashington still needs more transparency House Judiciary to probe DOJ's seizure of data from lawmakers, journalists The Hill's Morning Report - Biden-Putin meeting to dominate the week MORE, who supervises the Mueller probe. 
 
Asked if he still has confidence in Rosenstein, the president told reporters, "You figure that one out."