Nunes: I did not read material summarized in the memo

Rep. Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesNunes's facial expression right before lawmakers took break from Sondland testimony goes viral The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Johnson & Johnson — Sondland affirms quid pro quo for Ukraine in public testimony Live coverage: Schiff closes with speech highlighting claims of Trump's corruption MORE (R-Calif.) on Friday admitted that did not personally review the applications for surveillance warrants that provide the basis of the classified memo released earlier in the day.

Nunes said he relied on the review of committee member Rep. Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyFive landmark moments of testimony to Congress Conway spars with Wallace on whether White House will cooperate with impeachment inquiry after formal vote Gowdy: I '100 percent' still believe public congressional hearings are 'a circus' MORE (R-S.C.). 

“No, I didn’t,” Nunes told Fox News’s Bret Baier, when asked if he saw the applications.

The memo, released earlier in the day by the House Intelligence Committee, alleges that politically motivated material was used to petition the government for a warrant to surveil an American citizen.

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Nunes, the chairman of the committee, brushed off news reports that accused him of not seeing the underlying documents as “bogus.”

He explained that the committee set up an agreement with the Justice Department that would allow just one person to review the documents.

Nunes said he thought Gowdy would be the best choice because of his background as a federal prosecutor, and that Gowdy then shared his notes and observations with the rest of the members.

Rep. Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffNunes's facial expression right before lawmakers took break from Sondland testimony goes viral Sondland brings impeachment inquiry to White House doorstep Maloney wins House Oversight gavel MORE (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, torched Nunes earlier in the week for not reading all the materials involved in creating the document. He acknowledged the agreement Nunes referenced, but blasted the chairman for sending someone else to read the documents.

"The chairman never bothered to go read these underlying materials," Schiff told CNN's Anderson Cooper on Monday. "After months and months of making this argument that the FBI and DOJ are involved in some sort of conspiracy, he didn't even bother to read the materials himself."

Democrats have accused the GOP of cherry-picking facts in a partisan effort to protect President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE and undercut the Russia investigation.

FBI and Justice Department officials advised against releasing it, saying that it leaves out important context.