(CNN)FBI Director Christopher Wray sent a striking signal to the White House Wednesday, issuing a rare public warning that a controversial Republican memo about the FBI’s surveillance practices omits key information that could impact its veracity.
The move sets up an ugly clash with the President who wants it released.
“With regard to the House Intelligence Committee’s memorandum, the FBI was provided a limited opportunity to review this memo the day before the committee voted to release it,” the agency said in a statement. “As expressed during our initial review, we have grave concerns about material omissions of fact that fundamentally impact the memo’s accuracy.”
President Donald Trump himself was overheard telling a Republican congressman after the State of the Union address he will “100%” release the memo.
Yet the FBI warning was the latest evidence of law enforcement and intelligence agencies raising concerns about the potential public release of a memo composed by the staff of Republican Congressman Devin Nunes of California, which some say has inaccuracies and does not paint a full picture of how the surveillance process works, according to two law enforcement sources.
Some Justice Department officials had concerns about publicly expressing continued opposition to releasing the memo, according multiple officials. Trump had already been angered by a letter that the Justice Department sent to the House Intelligence Committee last week warning the release would be “extraordinarily reckless.” The FBI went ahead and issued the statement Wednesday anyway.