News & Politics

Peter Strzok, the FBI Agent Removed from Russia Probe Over Anti-Trump Bias, Interviewed Flynn

Former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn leaves federal court in Washington, Friday, Dec. 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Peter Strzok, the FBI agent who was removed from the Russia collusion investigation back in July over anti-Trump text messages, was heavily involved with the Clinton email investigation. And now shockingly, it has been revealed that he also oversaw the bureau’s interviews of embattled former national security advisor Michael Flynn. According to Circa News’ Sara Carter, “Strzok is one of two FBI agents who interviewed Flynn, which took place on Jan. 24, at the White House.”

He interviewed Hillary Clinton on July 2, 2016, and found she did nothing wrong. Same guy interviewed Michael Flynn six months later and came away with a perjury charge. Flynn is now facing jail time for mis-remembering details of his phone calls with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, which the feds were listening in on. He was improperly unmasked and his name illegally leaked to the press even though nothing was found to be improper about his his discussions with the Russian ambassador.

Fox News reported in an exclusive Monday that the DOJ’s Office of the Inspector General is reviewing the role Strzok played in the Clinton email investigation. It should probably also be investigating his role in Mueller’s Russia probe.

As PJ Media’s own Liz Sheld asked this morning, “If they already knew what Flynn and Kislyak discussed, why did the feds interview him to ask what was discussed? Did they do it to try and get Flynn in a ‘lie’?”

According to Fox, House investigators “have long regarded Strzok as a key figure” in a chain of events in 2016 involving the infamous anti-Trump dossier. Strzok is believed to be behind the Obama administration’s counterintelligence investigation into Russian meddling in the election that led to the FISA surveillance of a Trump campaign associate.

The “dirty dossier” was a salacious hodgepodge of unverified sexual allegations and political allegations about Trump and his campaign compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele for the opposition research firm Fusion GPS. According to the dossier’s allegation’s, Trump’s team colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 election.  However, according to top Russia expert David Satter, the dossier “employed standard Russian techniques of disinformation and manipulation.”

The project was funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, bank records show.

Additionally, a political group tied to the former president — Obama for America (OFA) — paid nearly a million dollars to the same law firm used by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and Hillary for America to funnel money to Fusion GPS.

OFA has paid over $972,000 to Perkins Coie, an international law firm, since April of 2016, Federal Election Commission (FEC) records show.

The Washington Post reported in October that FEC filings showed the Clinton campaign and the DNC paid Perkins Coie a combined $12.4 million in 2016. Marc Elias, general counsel to Hillary for America and a partner at Perkins Coie, retained Fusion GPS in April of 2016 to dig up dirt on President Trump.

According to Fox News, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, (R-CA) has long been seeking documents and witnesses from the DOJ and FBI to “determine what role, if any, the dossier played in the move to place a Trump campaign associate under foreign surveillance.”

Strzok himself briefed the committee on Dec. 5, 2016, the sources said, but within months of that session House Intelligence Committee investigators were contacted by an informant suggesting that there was “documentary evidence” that Strzok was purportedly obstructing the House probe into the dossier.

Nunes is now demanding that the FBI and DOJ explain why they refused to reveal the reason Mueller kicked a key supervising FBI agent off the Trump-Russia investigation, after being subpoenaed and repeatedly asked about it.

The House Intel Committee issued a subpoena that covered information about Strzok’s demotion more than three months ago.

On Oct. 11, Nunes met with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. In that meeting, Nunes specifically discussed the committee’s request for information about Strzok.

In an Oct. 31 committee staff meeting with the FBI, bureau officials refused a request for information about Strzok.

On Nov. 20, the committee again requested an interview with Strzok. (Three days earlier, on November 17, Strzok met with the Senate Intelligence Committee.)

On Nov. 29, Nunes again spoke to Rosenstein, and again discussed Strzok.

On Dec. 1, the committee again requested to speak with Strzok.

Someone from Mueller’s team — in what appears to be an orchestrated leak to both the Washington Post  and New York Times — finally came clean about Strzok’s demotion from the Russia investigation to human resources.

In both papers, unnamed federal law enforcement officials explained why the feds were reluctant to share the information.  The Post reported that “there is great concern that exposure of the texts they exchanged may be used by the president and his defenders to attack the credibility of the Mueller probe and the FBI more broadly,” and the Times reported that “the existence of the text messages is likely to fuel claims by Mr. Trump that he is the target of a witch hunt.”

This explanation didn’t satisfy the intel chairman.

The FBI and Justice Department have “failed to sufficiently cooperate with the Committee’s August 24 subpoena, and have specifically refused repeated demands from the House Intelligence Committee for an explanation of Pete Strzok’s dismissal from the Mueller probe,” Nunes said.

“We now know why Strzok was dismissed, why the FBI and DOJ refused to provide us this explanation, and at least one reason why they previously refused to make Deputy Director McCabe available to the Committee for an interview,” the chairman added.

Justice Department spokewoman Sarah Isgur Flores said, “We disagree with the Chairman’s characterization and will continue to work with congressional committees to provide the information they request consistent with our national security responsibilities.”

But Nunes countered, “By hiding from Congress, and from the American people, documented political bias by a key FBI head investigator for both the Russia collusion probe and the Clinton email investigation, the FBI and DOJ engaged in a willful attempt to thwart Congress’ constitutional oversight responsibility.”

He added that “this is part of a months-long pattern by the DOJ and FBI of stonewalling and obstructing this Committee’s oversight work, particularly oversight of their use of the Steele dossier. At this point, these agencies should be investigating themselves.”

Nunes instructed committee staff to draw up a contempt of Congress citation for Rosenstein and for FBI Director Christopher Wray. The chairman has given the FBI and DOJ until the end of December to meet all the committee’s outstanding demands — or else he will take action on the citations.

Meanwhile, President Trump continued his assault against the FBI on Monday, calling out the bureau’s hypocrisy for the way they treated Michael Flynn versus Hillary Clinton.

Editors Note: An earlier version of this post confused Peter Strzok with Peter Kadzik, another DOJ official who was involved with the Clinton email investigation in 2016.