Friday, July 13, 2018

Peter Strzok: “[The] White House Is Running This”

The day before the 2016 Presidential Election, November 7th, disgraced FBI agent Peter Strzok texted, “OMG, this is fucking terrifying.”

During the fierce grilling of Strzok yesterday, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) asked, “What was so terrifying about those same American people you trusted to “stop” him in August not stopping him in November?  What was so terrifying about that agent Strzok?”

“I was not referring to the American electorate at all.  The American electorate I respect in their decisions and their right to vote is absolutely a cornerstone of our democracy, so at no time did I insult or call into question the judgment or the power of the American electorate. What I was expressing in that text is my personal belief and my personal sense of how I saw and what I believed in the potential upcoming Administration,” said Strzok.

In response to his lover’s [Lisa Page] question, “Not ever going to become president, right, right?”, Strzok texted, “No, no he’s not, we’ll stop it.”

Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH) used his time during the testimony to ask, “…you were both rooting for Hillary Clinton to win and you both detested Donald Trump did you not?”

STRZOK: I think that’s fair to say.

CHABOT: And in fact, as we learned you apparently found Donald Trump’s supporters detestable too. Those around Loudon, Virginia as we’ve already heard you called ignorant hillbillies. And that you visited a southern Virginia Walmart and could smell the Trump support. Now, I have to say that when I read those communications and when I hear them here between the two of you, specifically, what you had to say about Trump supporters, it reminded me of something Hillary Clinton had said about Trump supporters. She found them—what did she call them? Deplorables? I would submit it was your and Hillary Clinton’s smug view of Donald Trump’s supporters that was truly deplorable. Don’t you think that the American people when they’re paying your salaries, when they are paying for a fair and unbiased investigation from none other than the FBI that they deserved a whole lot better then what those comments I just referred to reflect?

STRZOK: Congressman, two things. One, I absolutely regret the appearance of some of those texts and wish I would have said, phrased or not said at all some of the things I did. Two, I disagree completely with your attribution to my views of Trump supporters. I never said that. I expressed no such thing. There are millions and millions and millions and millions of Americans who I deeply respect and honor that voted for Mr. Trump.

Chabot pointed to Strzok’s inference that Loudoun County is taken from a scene in the 1972 film Deliverance. [Cue the banjo music]

Strzok was deploying his government down-speak of rural America; the tug of war between the forgotten men and women of “flyover country” and those ensconced in the comfortable armchair seat of power and wealth in Washington and the Left Coast.

During the afternoon session of the hearing, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) made the smarmy, smirking equivocator read out loud his text messages.

In a moment of pure prosecutorial prowess, Rep. Gowdy laid out the case for Strzok’s unencumbered bias:

“About two weeks ago, FBI Agent Peter Strzok was interviewed for more than 10 hours. We learned that Agent Strzok has a most unusual and largely self-serving definition of bias. Agent Strzok, despite the plain language of his text and e-mails, despite the Inspector General's report and despite common sense, doesn't think he was biased.”

He thinks calling someone destabilizing for the country isn't bias. He thinks promising to protect the country from someone he hasn't even begun to investigate isn't bias. He thinks promising to stop someone he is supposed to be fairly investigating from ever becoming president isn’t bias.”

“He thinks talking about an insurance policy to keep someone from becoming president isn't bias. But that's for one of the folks he was investigating. He has a different set of rules for others that he’s investigating.”

“Agent Strzok thinks saying someone he is allegedly investigating should be elected President 100 million to zero before he ever interviews. He doesn't think that's bias. Agent Strzok thinks pronouncing someone innocent before bothering to interview more than 30 different witnesses isn’t bias.”

“He thinks claiming you can smell the Trump supporters isn't bias, but he doesn't say a single solitary word about being able to smell the support of any other candidate. To him, that isn’t bias.”

“The moment Special Counsel Bob Mueller found out about Peter Strzok's text and e-mails, he was kicked off the investigation. But that was a year and a half too late. The text and the e-mails may have been discovered in May of 2017, but the bias existed and was manifest a year and a half before that, all the way back to late 2015 and early 2016.” 

This country is deeply divided and while what Strzok and his lover did is deeply troubling, it is clear part of the impetus for their contempt of Trump can be laid at the feet of Never Trumpers.  Have a listen:
STRZOK EMAIL:  And hi. Went well, best we could have expected. Other than [REDACTED] quote: “the White House is running this.” My answer, “well, maybe for you they are.” And of course, I was planning on telling this guy, thanks for coming, we’ve got an hour, but with Bill [Priestap] there, I’ve got no control….

PAGE EMAIL REPLY:  Yeah, whatever (re the WH comment). We’ve got the emails that say otherwise.

It would be interesting to know what is in the emails that apparently clarify how the Obama Administration divided responsibility for running the Trump-Russia investigation. 

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