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Rep. Devin Nunes gives a press conference. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Rep. Devin Nunes, who led the release of the memo, admitted to Fox News' Bret Baier that he hadn't read the FISA documents that made up the basis of the memo.

Why it matters: The memo is largely based on the argument that there were FISA abuses within the FBI, particularly relating to former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. As chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, some are criticizing Nunes for not reading these pertinent documents himself before releasing the memo.

How it happened: "So, the agreement we made with the Department of Justice was to create a reading room and allow one member and two investigators to go over and review the documents," Nunes told Baier. "I thought the best person on our committee will be the chairman of the Oversight Committee, Trey Gowdy, who has a long career as a federal prosecutor, to go and do this.  And then they over a series of meetings would come back with their notes and brief the rest of the committee members."

  • This further raises questions about whether there was any incorrect information provided to the FBI in support of surveilling Page.

One quick thing: Baier also asked Nunes about Rod Rosenstein, specifically citing the outside conservative group calling for his resignation, which Axios first reported. "I personally like Rod Rosenstein," Nunes said. "But look, the bottom line here is that Mr. Rosenstein, Mr. Sessions, Attorney General Sessions and Director Wray have work to do.  And they can’t start doing their work to root the problems if you don’t admit first that you have a problem.  And they have been unwilling to do that." 

Go deeper: Between the lines of the Nunes memo.

Go deeper

In photos: Protests outside fortified capitols draw only small groups

Armed members of the far-right extremist group the Boogaloo Bois near the Michigan Capitol Building in Lansing on Jan. 17. About 20 protesters showed up, AP notes. Photo: Seth Herald/AFP via Getty Images

Small groups of protesters rallied outside fortified statehouses over the weekend ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

The big picture: Some protests attracted armed members of far-right extremist groups but there were no reports of clashes, as had been feared. The National Guard and law enforcement outnumbered demonstrators, as security was heightened around the U.S. to avoid a repeat of the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riots, per AP.

6 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations before leaving office

Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump plans to issue at least 100 pardons and commutations on his final full day in office Tuesday, sources familiar with the matter told Axios.

Why it matters: This is a continuation of the president's controversial December spree that saw full pardons granted to more than two dozen people — including former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort, longtime associate Roger Stone and Charles Kushner, the father of Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

  • The pardons set to be issued before Trump exits the White House will be a mix of criminal justice ones and pardons for people connected to the president, the sources said.
  • CNN first reported this news.

Go deeper: Convicts turn to D.C. fixers for Trump pardons

Schumer's m(aj)ority checklist

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Capitalizing on the Georgia runoffs, achieving a 50-50 Senate and launching an impeachment trial are weighty to-dos for getting Joe Biden's administration up and running on Day One.

What to watch: A blend of ceremonies, hearings and legal timelines will come into play on Tuesday and Wednesday so Chuck Schumer can actually claim the Senate majority and propel the new president's agenda.