Top Justice Department officials made a last-ditch plea Monday to White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly about the dangers of publicly releasing a memo alleging abuses by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, according to people briefed on the meeting.
Shortly before the House Intelligence Committee voted to make the document public, Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein warned Kelly that the four-page memo prepared by House Republicans could jeopardize classified information and implored the president to reconsider his support for making it public, those people said. Rosenstein was joined in the meeting at the White House by FBI Director Christopher A. Wray.
Rosenstein, who is supervising special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, said the Department of Justice was not convinced the memo accurately describes its investigative practices. He said making the document public could set a dangerous precedent, according to a person familiar with the discussion.