President Trump declassified a trove of documents related to the early days of the FBI's Russian Federation investigation, including a portion of a secret surveillance warrant application and former FBI Director James Comey's text messages.
Trump requested the release of "all text messages relating to the Russian Federation investigation" from several former senior FBI officials, including James Comey, the former director, and Andrew McCabe, his former deputy.
US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he is not anxious about what his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who is cooperating with the US special counsel's probe into Russian election meddling, will tell prosecutors, as long as he is truthful.
Both the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Justice Department issued statements late Monday saying they were working to comply with the order but had to review the documents first, "to ensure the safety of America's national security interests".
But one source familiar with the process, speaking on condition of anonymity, said neither the Justice Department nor the Federal Bureau of Investigation had any idea how the declassification process was supposed to work in this case - suggesting Trump's order had taken them by surprise.
U.S. President Donald Trump is raising the possibility he could order the declassification of more documents related to the investigation into Russia's election meddling. -Calif., the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee, said he had been told the release of these materials could compromise intelligence sources and methods.
Much is already known about the Carter Page warrant and the Strzok/Page relationship through previous texts, documents and memos, but the release should provide much more detail.
The president has the authority to declassify any secret in the government, but experts could not recall a president doing so in a manner that seemed to leave aside any concerns raised by his own intelligence advisers. "Some people aren't likely to risk their lives or their families' under those conditions".
"We're on the verge of I believe of having full transparency in this process", Nunes said.
Page admitted earlier this summer, Fox News reported Sunday, that investigators, led by her then-paramour Strzok, had found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin after more than nine months of investigating.
Despite the president's decision to declassify the documents, it is not clear when they will be made public.
The disclosures were unprecedented given that surveillance warrants obtained from the secret court are highly classified and are not meant to be publicly disclosed, including to defendants preparing for or awaiting trial.
Various U.S. intelligence agencies, including the CIA, National Security Agency and FBI, have investigated him for alleged contact he had with Russian officials under U.S. sanctions. "The Democrats know it's a witch hunt, too, but they don't want to admit it because that's not good politics for them".