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Photo: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images

Rep. Trey Gowdy, who was involved in the drafting of the controversial FISA memo, told CBS’ “Face the Nation” it has no effect on the Russia investigation:

There is a Russia investigation without a dossier… the dossier has nothing to do with the meeting at Trump Tower. The dossier has nothing to do with an email sent by Cambridge Analytica. The dossier really has nothing to do with George Papadopoulos' meeting in Great Britain. It also doesn't have anything to do with obstruction of justice.

Why it matters: President Trump claims the memo "totally vindicates" him and has suggested it should bring an end to the Russia "witch hunt." Gowdy disagrees.

Gowdy did defend the decision to release the memo, arguing the use of the Steele dossier to obtain a FISA warrant against Carter Page was “unprecedented” and inappropriate.

  • Gowdy said he has complete confidence in FBI Director Ray, Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein and Special Counsel Mueller.
  • On Andy McCabe, who stepped down recently as Deputy FBI Director: "I found him to be a professional witness even though I disagree with some of the decisions he made. And I think we've got to get to some point in life where you can disagree with the decision-making process that someone engaged in, without believing that they are corrupt or somehow part of the 'deep state', whatever that means."
  • On why he’s retiring: "I enjoy the justice system more. I enjoy being fair. I enjoy the pursuit of fairness as a virtue and I'm just more comfortable in that system."

Go deeper

DOJ cites discrimination in lawsuit against Texas over voting districts

Attorney General Merrick Garland. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The Department of Justice on Monday filed a lawsuit against Texas, alleging Republican state lawmakers discriminated against Black and Latino voters and has "again diluted the voting strength of minority Texans" when they approved new redistricting maps.

Why it matters: A DOJ assessment of the new districts found that they violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Merrick Garland said at a press conference.

3 hours ago - World

Biden to warn Putin U.S. will add troops in Eastern Europe if Russia invades Ukraine

Putin meets Biden in Geneva. Photo: Peter Klaunzer - Pool/Keystone via Getty

President Biden will warn Russian President Vladimir Putin when they speak on Tuesday that if Russia invades Ukraine, the U.S. is prepared to increase its troop presence, capabilities and military exercises on NATO's "eastern flank," a senior administration official told reporters.

Why it matters: The administration believes it's increasingly likely that Putin will order an invasion.

4 hours ago - World

U.S. announces diplomatic boycott of Beijing Winter Olympics

An Olympic-themed sculpture in Beijing on Dec. 1. Photo: Hou Yu/China News Service via Getty Images

The U.S. announced Monday that it will not send officials to the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics in protest of human rights abuses committed by the Chinese Communist Party.

Why it matters: The diplomatic boycott — which won't prevent American athletes from competing — marks a major escalation between the U.S. and China amid already heightened tensions over the CCP's treatment of Muslim minorities, military threats to Taiwan and economic tariffs.