Government skullduggery rears its ugly head at a congressional hearing.
Two Trump-hating FBI gumshoes investigating Hillary Clinton’s email treachery and alleged Russian interference in last year’s election traded crude, caustic barbs about President Trump while they plotted to undermine him, congressional overseers heard yesterday.
This shouldn’t be all that surprising given that Barack Obama gleefully weaponized the FBI, Department of Justice, and various intelligence agencies, and criminalized political differences in the process. A radical zealot with a desire to fundamentally transform the United States, the 44th president had a limited sense of boundaries. Obama was more Third World caudillo than president and he was never troubled by hijacking governmental powers to hurt his opposition, as the conservative groups targeted by his IRS can attest. His race-obsessed first attorney general, Eric Holder, turned the Justice Department into a virtual arm of the Democratic Party, using the agency to punish the Left’s enemies and let allies run wild. His second attorney general, Loretta Lynch, surreptitiously met with Bill Clinton in an airport hangar, presumably to cut a shady deal to let Hillary Clinton escape punishment for the many crimes she committed in office.
"It’s clear there was a nefarious conspiracy" between federal officials to defeat Trump, Fox News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett told Sean Hannity after the hearing. Jarrett added that when the plot didn’t succeed, the conspirators switched to Plan B, which he described as, “Let’s just say there’s a crime and then we’ll just search for a crime.”
At the House Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday, Rod Rosenstein, the second-highest-ranking official at the Justice Department and the man who appointed Russia probe-leading Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III, gave a clean bill of health to Mueller’s ongoing witch hunt aimed at reversing last year’s election result.
“I know what he’s doing,” Rosenstein said. “He consults with me about their investigation, within and without the scope.”
The committee’s chairman, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), expressed alarm at the ever-expanding investigation, saying, “We are now beginning to understand the magnitude of this insider bias on Mueller’s team.” As previously reported, there were nine Democrat donors on the team of 15, and one member had even worked for Hillary Clinton.
According to Goodlatte, this bias was on display in investigator Andrew Weissmann’s stated “awe” of fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates for disobeying President Trump, and investigator Jeannie Rhee’s representation of the irretrievably corrupt Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.
“Aren’t DoJ attorneys advised to avoid even the ‘appearance of impropriety’?” Goodlatte asked, saying the “potential bias” of certain career Justice Department officials and lawyers on Mueller’s team was “deeply troubling.” “DoJ investigations must not be tainted by individuals imposing their own political prejudices.”
Committee members learned that Peter Strzok, the principal investigator in the Hillary Clinton email scandal, was exchanging pro-Clinton and anti-Trump messages throughout his extramarital affair with lawyer Lisa Page, who was working at the time for FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe. McCabe served as acting director of the FBI from May 9 when President Trump fired then-director James Comey until Aug. 2 when new director Christopher Wray took over. While serving as acting FBI director, McCabe was involved in the email investigation.
McCabe’s wife, Jill McCabe, was a Democratic candidate in 2015 for District 13 of the Virginia State Senate. Her campaign received nearly $675,000 in donations from the Virginia Democratic Party and Common Good VA, a political action committee of Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), a slippery longtime Clinton flunky. Mr. McCabe failed to recuse himself from the Clinton email probe until Nov. 1, 2016, which was four days after Comey, then the FBI director, announced the agency had reopened the investigation into the emails after finding new data on computer hard drives belonging to former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.), the now-imprisoned sex-offender husband of Hillary’s top lieutenant, Huma Abedin. It was also eight days after the ties between Mrs. McCabe and McAuliffe became public knowledge.
Disturbingly, Strzok, who was later removed from the investigation by Mueller and demoted by the FBI for his texting misconduct, apparently relied on the discredited “piss-gate” dossier from opposition research firm Fusion GPS which was working for Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Among the dossier’s ridiculous claims was that President Trump hired prostitutes in Moscow to urinate on a hotel bed. The fanciful file was assembled by former British spy Christopher Steele based on information provided by Russian government operatives. The FBI reportedly paid for the dossier and may even have used it to obtain warrants to snoop on Trump associates from the Federal Intelligence Surveillance Court.
Fusion GPS has acknowledged in court documents that it paid a senior Justice Department official’s wife to dig up dirt on Donald Trump, the Daily Caller reports. The company stated it hired Nellie H. Ohr as a subcontractor to assist with “research and analysis of Mr. Trump.” Ohr is married to Bruce G. Ohr, who was associate deputy attorney general until his recent mysterious demotion at the Justice Department.
Wherever there is trouble, look for Strzok’s fingerprints. Strzok talked then-FBI Director James Comey into calling Hillary Clinton’s handling of classified information “extremely careless” instead of “grossly negligent.” He also interviewed then-National Security Advisor Michael Flynn before the Trump administration canned him.
At an oversight hearing last week, Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) said the watering down of the language about Clinton was done “so she could escape prosecution and thus stay in the race against Donald Trump.”
Text messages between Strzok and his mistress that were released by the congressional committee show the two Hillary supporters tag-teaming then-candidate Trump as early as 2015.
After Trump reportedly said it hadn’t been proven that Russian President Vladimir Putin had killed anyone, Page texted: “What an utter idiot.”
In August 2015, Page texted to Strzok, "I just saw my first Bernie Sander [sic] bumper sticker. Made me want to key the car." Strzok answered, "He's an idiot like Trump. Figure they cancel each other out."
In March 2016 Page texted: “God trump is a loathsome human….omg he’s an idiot.”
“He’s awful,” Strzok responded.
The same month Page seemed worried their texts could be discovered. "So look, you say we can text on that phone when we talk about Hillary because it can[’]t be traced," she texted.
In longer text messages the two lovers bashed Trump in greater detail.
Trump “appears to have no ability to experience reverence which I [sic] the foundation for any capacity to admire or serve anything bigger than self to want to learn about anything beyond self, to want to know and deeply honor the people around you," Strzok wrote. Page replied, "He's not ever going to become president, right? Right?"
On Election Day, Strzok was overcome by horror. After seeing a map indicating Trump was winning, he called it "fucking terrifying." A week later the two interlocutors were shocked to learn that then-Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama) was likely to be nominated as attorney general. "Sessions for AG," Strzok wrote, alongside a profanity. Page shot back, "Good god."
Strzok and Page griped about other Republicans, too. Page texted a wish that Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) "fails and crashes in a blaze of glory." Strzok replied by writing that the GOP "needs to pull their head out of that ass. Shows no sign of occurring any time soon."
One text-based discussion between the two suggests something was afoot that was much more sinister than merely complaining about politicians.
“I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s office — that there’s no way [Trump] gets elected — but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk,” Strzok wrote Aug. 15, 2016.
“It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40,” Strzok texted.
If “Andy” is Andrew McCabe, which would make sense given that Page was McCabe’s subordinate, this means Strzok, Page, and McCabe may have had a conversation about a plan to take down Trump. The “insurance policy” could be Strzok’s way of describing his opportunity to sabotage Trump’s presidency from inside goverment.
“Maybe you’re meant to stay where you are because you’re meant to protect the country from that menace,” Page texted.
“I can protect our country at many levels, not sure if that helps,” Strzok responded.
At yesterday’s hearing, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) mocked Strzok, saying "This guy thought he was super agent James Bond at the FBI."
“Rather than wearing stripes like a referee, the Mueller team overwhelmingly ought to be attired with Democratic donkeys or Hillary t-shirts, not shirts that say ‘Make America Great Again,’ because I think the American people deserve more than the very biased team they have under Mueller,” Rep. Chabot said. “It’s really sad.”
Having a political opinion is fine, even if you’re an FBI investigator.
Strzok, Page, and McCabe, like all Americans, have constitutionally protected rights.
But plotting to sabotage or overthrow a duly elected president, if that’s what these FBI employees were planning, is not one of those rights.