Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) lamented on Tuesday morning that the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia investigation has become partisan and warned against the release of an anti-FBI memo crafted by staff for the committee’s Republican chair, Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA).
“I believe that he should follow the advice of his Justice Department which so far is to not release it,” Collins said on CNN when asked if President Donald Trump should approve the release of the memo, now that the House Intelligence Committee voted to make it public.
She said that the Justice Department has a “legitimate concern” in not wanting the memo released because it could “result in a compromise of sources and methods.”
Collins said that the House investigation has become too partisan and that House lawmakers are better off working together, along with the Justice Department, on a report everyone agrees can be released to the public.
“This issue is too important to break down along partisan lines,” she said.
The senator said that when the Senate Intelligence Committee encountered disagreement over a report on the use of torture, they worked with all parties on the final result.
“We sat down for months with the CIA and others from the intel community. We went through it, we redacted parts of it, and ultimately we released it. We released dissenting views at the same time,” she said. “It was a much better way to proceed.”
“It seems to me that what the House Intelligence Committee ought to do is sit down with the Justice Department, go through the report, see if there are issues that are contested or that would compromise our security, and come up with a redacted report. Now that’s not as satisfying to the press and the public, but there’s some underlying intelligence that will never be able to be released,” she added.
Collins also stressed that the public should pay attention to the final results in the Senate Intelligence Committee, special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, and in the investigation by the Justice Department’s inspector general.
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