Peter Strzok Testifies Before House Committees

13 July, 2018, 04:01 | Author: Jason Torres
  • Peter Strzok the FBI agent facing criticism following a series of anti Trump text messages walks to gives a deposition before the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington

He said the communications with an Federal Bureau of Investigation lawyer in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election reflected purely personal opinions that he never once acted on, though he did acknowledge being dismayed during the campaign by the Republican candidate's behavior.

"Most disturbingly, it has been wildly successful - sowing discord in our nation and shaking faith in our institutions". While Republicans badgered Strzok and tried to catch him off-guard, Democrats mostly used their time to argue for the importance of the Mueller investigation.

Deputy Assistant FBI Director Peter Strzok is sworn in before a joint committee hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill July 12, 2018 in Washington, DC.

The hearing was often raucous and seemed at times more like a TV comedy about Congress than a real committee hearing.

Republican members of the House judiciary and oversight committees grilled Strzok as they argued that text messages he exchanged with FBI lawyer Lisa Page colored the outcome of the Clinton investigation and undercut the ongoing Russian Federation probe.

An argument ensued between Goodlatte and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), the committee's ranking member, who contended that Gowdy was putting Strzok in an "impossible position". (The investigation was handed over to special counsel Robert Mueller in mid-2017.) Republicans quickly objected and threatened to hold Strzok in contempt. Democrats noted that it was unusual that Strzok be asked to disclose such details in a public setting. They are safely walled off from any individual's personal political views, he said.

At one point, Strzok said he didn't appreciate an assertion from Gowdy, who retorted, "I don't give a damn what you appreciate".

A joint House hearing to question an FBI agent who worked on investigations involving both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton quickly devolved into chaos as Republicans demanded he answer questions about the Russian Federation investigation.

Gohmert is also accusing Strzok of lying when he expressed his opinion of whether derogatory comments he made about President Donald Trump in text messages showed bias.

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Page told investigators that she and Strzok were having an affair, according to a Justice Department Inspector General's report about the Clinton email investigation, and that they used their work devices to hide that from their spouses.

And by the way, where are the pro-Trump texts? The texts were discovered during the Justice Department inspector general's probe of the Clinton email investigation.

Strzok was asked if he ever thought of recusing himself from the investigation. But the report said it found no evidence of political bias in the FBI's decision to not pursue criminal charges against Clinton.

Strzok already testified last month behind closed doors for 11 hours and faced a public grilling Thursday before the House Judiciary and Oversight Committees. Goodlatte called the hearing "long overdue".

At one point, Rep. Louis Gohmert, a Texas Republican, invoked Strzok's personal life by alluding to the fact the texts were exchanged while he and Page were in a relationship.

Just as sacred, said Peter Strzok on Thursday in the halls of Congress, was his own right to curse the president of the United States and the odours of the Americans who love him, even while heading the investigation against him.

Wolf Blizter: The texts between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, they are so damning. Wow, but is anybody really surprised!

Democratic Congressman Steve Cohen found himself in hot-water Thursday among America's fearless service men and women; bizarrely saying anti-Trump FBI agent Peter Strzok deserves a Purple Heart over his escalating scandal.

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