Published: Sat, July 14, 2018

Rep. Issa: 'We Know Peter Strzok Is a Bad Guy'

Rep. Issa: 'We Know Peter Strzok Is a Bad Guy'

The embattled FBI agent who oversaw the opening of the Russian Federation investigation mounted an aggressive personal defence on Thursday, rejecting accusations that he let his private political views bias his official actions and labelling Republican preoccupation with him "another victory notch in Putin's belt".

In an interview after his explosive performance questioning Peter Strzok Thursday, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) made astounding claims against former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Fox News.

Louie Gohmert caused an uproar at a congressional hearing Thursday when he accused an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent of lying under oath and asked him "how many times" did he look "so innocently into [his] wife's eyes and lie to her" about a marital affair.

And as lawmakers hurled slurs at each other and at the agent, a man sitting just behind Strzok couldn't keep a straight face.

"I have always told the truth", Strzok said.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said the congressional focus on the "internal workings of the special counsel's investigation" distracts from more critical questions about Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the need to protect future US elections from foreign influence.


Strzok implored Republicans to appreciate the context of his text, which was sent late at night, shortly after the Republican nominee had "insulted the immigrant family of a fallen war hero" (i.e., the family of Khizr Muazzam Khan, who spoke at the Democratic National Convention).

The hearing was punctuated by chaos and open yelling as Judiciary Committee Chairman Robert Goodlatte said Strzok needed to answer Republicans' questions and suggested they might recess the hearing and hold him in contempt. Democrats objected to Goodlatte's repeated attempts to get Strzok to answer. In it, Strzok describes his reluctance to work on behalf of the special counsel, and that seemed to imply he didn't think there would be substantial findings of collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign team.

At one point, Strzok refused to answer questions, citing a directive by Federal Bureau of Investigation attorneys, leading the chairman to threaten him with contempt of Congress. "It was, in no way, unequivocally, any suggestion that me, the Federal Bureau of Investigation would take any action whatsoever to improperly impact the electoral process". "As someone who loves this country and cherishes its ideals, it is profoundly painful to watch and even worse to play a part in".

"It wasn't the discovery of your texts, Mr. Strzok".

FBI Director Chris Wray says employees who were singled out for criticism in the report have been referred to internal disciplinary officials.

"He [Strzok] was told by the intelligence community inspector general's investigator Frank Rutger that they had found an anomaly in the emails going to and from Hillary Clinton's unauthorized private server", Gohmert explained.

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