Transcripts from Lisa Page Testimony Suggest Brennan Knew about Steele Dossier Before FBI
On Friday, Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) announced on the House floor that he was releasing Justice Department official Bruce Ohr's 2018 transcript of testimony and promised that more interview transcripts would be forthcoming.
Today, Collins made good on that promise, releasing 370 pages of transcripts from former FBI lawyer Lisa Page's July 2018 congressional testimony.
"The American people deserve to know what transpired at the highest echelons of the FBI during this tumultuous time for the Bureau," he explained.
"Out of an abundance of caution, the transcript has a limited number of narrowly tailored redactions related only to confidential sources and methods, non-public information about ongoing investigations and non-material personal information," Collins added.
He vowed to continue working to release "as many transcripts as possible" because "the American people deserve transparency."
Lovebirds Lisa Page and former FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok exchanged hundreds of anti-Trump text messages on government phones while their FBI unit was investigating the Trump campaign in 2016.
Bruce Ohr kept top officials at both the FBI and Department of Justice apprised of his conversations with Christopher Steele in 2016 and 2017, both before and after Steele was fired as an informant.
Many details about Page's testimony have already been leaked -- such as her admission that, more than nine months after the FBI launched its "Crossfire Hurricane" counterintelligence operation to spy on the Trump campaign, the Bureau still had no case connecting Trump or his campaign to Russia’s election meddling.
Transcripts from the closed-door interview were also leaked to The Epoch Times in January.
One key finding from Page's testimony indicates that former CIA Director John Brennan was involved with the Steele dossier before the FBI was.
Lisa Page insisted that the FBI investigative unit didn't know about the Steele dossier until mid-September 2016. However, Brennan was aware of the dirty dossier in early August 2016, and used the unverified information to brief former Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.). On August 29, Reid asked the FBI to "investigate evidence suggesting that Russia may try to manipulate voting results in November."
Here are some other revelations in Page’s testimony before Congress:
• The FBI appears to have considered investigating President Trump for obstruction of justice both before and after FBI Director James Comey was fired.
• Page says the DOJ refused to pursue “gross-negligence” charges against Hillary Clinton over her use of a private email server to send classified information.
• FBI agent Michael Gaeta, head of the Eurasian Crime Squad, who received the dossier from former MI6 spy Christopher Steele in July 2016 is referred to in the transcript as Steele’s handler.
• The FBI maintained a previously unknown verification file for the Steele dossier. Congressional investigators didn’t previously know of its existence.
• John Carlin, the head of the DOJ’s National Security Division, was kept abreast of the FBI’s investigative activities through contact with then-Deputy FBI Director McCabe.
• Page worked directly for DOJ official Bruce Ohr for at least five years and had met his wife, Nellie, once.
• The role of FBI agent Jonathan Moffa and DOJ official George Toscas may have been greater than initially assumed.
The Daily Caller's Chuck Ross picked up on something else that should really annoy the president. A question that has often been asked is, why didn't the FBI just brief candidate Trump with the concerns it had with some members of his campaign instead of investigating it? Page's answer -- that they just didn't know for sure -- is not terribly convincing given that they obtained a FISA warrant based on the same weak evidence.
Other interesting tidbits:
According to Page, virtually everyone at the FBI was against having Hillary Clinton questioned over her emails while fact witnesses Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson were present.
No one seems to know what Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) was talking about here: