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FBI’s Strzok Lashes Out at GOP During Hearing

12 July 2018

"The Judiciary Committee intends to initiate contempt proceedings on Friday, July 13, 2018, at 10:30 a.m.", Goodlatte and Gowdy wrote in their letter to Amy Jeffress, who is representing Page.

"Mr. Strzok, you are under subpoena, and are required to answer the question", Goodlatte said.

Strzok has been a lightning rod in the political sphere over the last several months, particularly since it emerged that he and Federal Bureau of Investigation lawyer Lisa Page exchanged thousands of text messages during the election expressing support for Clinton and denigrating Trump.

The FBI agent said the Russian Federation investigation that began in summer 2016 had the power to "derail, and quite possibly, defeat Mr. Trump".

But Republicans eager for ways to discredit Mueller's investigation have for months held up the texts from Strzok and Page to support allegations of anti-Trump bias within federal law enforcement.

"At no time, in any of those texts, did those personal beliefs ever enter into the realm of any action I took", Strzok said.

"As House Judiciary Republicans spend half the day or longer publicly flogging Peter Strzok", wrote Wheeler, "know that all that flogging can not change the fact that key evidence in Mueller's possession, evidence which I suspect implicates the president directly, has absolutely no tie to Peter Strzok at all".

Strzok sought to explain his texts, including when he told Page "we'll stop" Trump, which he said was written in response to Trump's attacks on a Gold Star family during the 2016 campaign.

Peter Strzok said he had information with "the potential to derail and quite possibly defeat" Trump but said the "thought of expressing that or exposing that information never crossed his mind".

It is point that has been largely brushed aside in Trump-friendly media circles, with a text Strzok sent to Page in May 2017 also receiving comparatively little scrutiny.

"I have the utmost respect for Congress's oversight role, but I truly believe that today's hearing is just another victory notch in [Russian President Vladimir Putin's] belt and another milestone in our enemies' campaign to tear America apart", Strzok said. "No he's not. We'll stop it".

"Not at all", a defiant Strzok said.

The sharp tone of Strzok's statement set the stage for a contentious hearing following hours of closed-door questioning last week.

In an interview with investigators with the Justice Department's Inspector General, Page said she was "totally appalled that the President would insult the father of a dead service member". But the report said it found no evidence of political bias in the FBI's decision to not pursue criminal charges against Clinton.

Strzok said there were multiple levels above him and below him at the FBI during the probes, dismissing the idea that he could have influenced either investigation based on a political bias.

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page has struck a deal to testify this week before Congress for a transcribed interview centered on her conduct during the 2016 presidential election, according to the head of the House Judiciary Committee.

FBI’s Strzok Lashes Out at GOP During Hearing