World

The Peter Strzok fiasco wrecks the GOP’s bogus conspiracy theory

The Peter Strzok fiasco wrecks the GOP’s bogus conspiracy theory

Strzok was there to publicly address Republican accusations that he sought to improperly affect the outcome of the 2016 USA election, and had a heated back-and-forth with Rep. Trey Gowdy, the chairman of the House Oversight Committee.

"Will the committee also consider contempt for Mr. Bannon?"

He added: "I have the utmost respect for Congress's oversight role, but I truly believe that today's hearing is just another victory notch in Putin's belt and another milestone in our enemies' campaign to tear America apart".

Gowdy has repeatedly slammed Strzok and other top FBI officials for being politically biased against Trump, and suggested that Strzok allowed bias to affect decisions he made in the FBI's Russian Federation probe and the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server.

In a fiery exchange between Rep. Trey Gowdy and FBI agent Peter Strzok during a House committee hearing Thursday morning, the FBI agent claimed he was unbiased despite sending numerous text messages lambasting then-presidential candidate Donald Trump while leading investigations into Trump.

He insisted under aggressive questioning that an August 2016 text in which he said "We'll stop" a Trump presidency followed Trump's denigration of the family of a dead USA service member.

Republicans' dissatisfaction with Strzok and the FBI's handling of him prompted the joint hearing of the House Oversight and House Judiciary committees Thursday.

"But let me be clear, unequivocally and under oath: not once in my 26 years of defending my nation did my personal opinions impact any official action I took", he said.

Democrats, led by Judiciary Committee ranking member Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., attempted to throw a number of procedural roadblocks into the way of the majority's questions, including with a number of motions and "points of order" to slow the questioning. "My personal opinions in no way-" Strzok said, before he was interrupted.

"This investigation is not politically motivated", Strzok said.




Gowdy pressed Strzok on the texts during the back-and-forth, at one point telling the FBI agent that it's "no wonder Bob Mueller kicked you off the investigation".

Gowdy was repeatedly interrupted through the rest of his questions, while he and Strzok got into a heated exchange.

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.

Strzok pointed out that he was not under subpoena and appearing before the committee voluntarily, which appeared to infuriate Goodlatte even more.

Gowdy seized on one message that has received particular attention from right-wing media outlets, an August 8, 2016, text in which Strzok, discussing with Page the prospect of a Trump win, says, "No".

Goodlatte said he issued a subpoena to compel Page to talk to lawmakers Wednesday, but her attorney said she would not appear.

In one, Page asked Strzok if Trump was going to be president.

The White House said President Trump is monitoring the hearing from Europe.

Trump himself has launched personal attacks against the two Federal Bureau of Investigation officials, including a Wednesday evening tweet that asked "how can the Rigged Witch Hunt proceed when it was started, influenced and worked on, for an extended period of time" by Strzok.


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