The House Intelligence Committee meets at 5 p.m. Monday in the Capitol. The meeting will give the committee its first opportunity to vote on the question of releasing the so-called “FISA abuse” memo that has captured Washington’s attention in recent days. Since the GOP holds a 13 to 9 advantage on the committee, the overwhelming likelihood is that if there is a vote, the panel will decide, along party lines, to release the memo.
At that point, House rules call for the committee to await a decision by the president on whether he supports or opposes release of the memo. President Trump has made clear he supports release, so the memo could be made public quickly.
Now, though, it appears that Attorney General Jeff Sessions — who remains recused from the Trump-Russia affair — is trying to send conciliatory signals to Congress on the oversight issue. In a speech in Norfolk, Va. on Friday, Sessions suggested the Justice Department has been too “defensive” in handling criticism.
“We don’t see criticism from Congress as a bad thing,” Sessions said. “We welcome Congress as a partner in this effort . When they learn of a problem and start asking questions, that is a good thing. Sunlight truly is the best disinfectant. Truth produces confidence.”