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Shouting, Insults As FBI Agent Faces Angry Republicans

Shouting, Insults As FBI Agent Faces Angry Republicans

Mr Strzok denied that the Federal Bureau of Investigation was biased against then-candidate Trump and rejected that his actions in the Russian Federation probe after the 2016 election had political motivations.

Rep. Steve CohenStephen (Steve) Ira CohenGOP advances bill demanding documents from FBI Dems rip Trump concessions, "embarrassing" rhetoric with Kim Lawmakers spar at hearing over census citizenship question MORE (D-Tenn.) during the hearing said he felt Strzok deserved a Purple Heart for enduring aggressive questioning from the Republicans. He was removed from the Russian Federation investigation after the discovery of anti-Trump text messages exchanged with an FBI lawyer, Lisa Page, with whom he was having an affair. And particularly damaging was the fact that, according to unnamed United States officials, Strzok played a role in changing former FBI Director James Comey's wording regarding how she handled classified information from "gross negligence" to the noncriminal "extremely careless".

Strzok struck a combative tone throughout the hearing, telling congressmen, "Today's hearing is just another victory notch in Putin's belt and another milestone in our enemies' campaign to tear America apart".

The two agents disparaged Trump throughout 2016, describing him as an "idiot" and a "menace".

"To suggest we can parse down the shorthand like they're some contract for a auto is simply not consistent with my or most people's use of text messaging", Strzok said, practically yelling at Gowdy.

"It was an opportunity for Agent Strzok to rehabilitate his reputation after nearly a year of - of smears", he said.

Gohmert said he meant to ask Strzok about an allegation that the agent was told by Intelligence Community Inspector General's investigator Frank Rucker that an "anomaly" was found in the metadata within Clinton's unauthorized private email server.

"Well then why did you get kicked off?" Gowdy interjected. "Hang on a second".

Read Mueller’s full indictment against 12 Russian officers for election interference
Rosenstein said there is no allegation that U.S. citizens were involved in the alleged crimes described in the indictment. But Friday's indictment was the first by Mueller that directly charges Russia's government with meddling.

"I have to say that I was looking forward to this", said Ingraham. I do not have bias.

Strzok acknowledged that while his text message criticism was "blunt", it was not directed at one person or political party and included jabs not only at Trump but also at Clinton and Sen.

For a brief moment, lawmakers floated the idea of Strzok having some company when he appears Thursday - as the committee offered Page a spot to testify at Thursday's hearing.

"It was in response to a series of events that included then-candidate Trump insulting the immigrant family of a fallen war hero and my presumption, based on that terrible, disgusting behavior, that the American population would not elect somebody demonstrating that behavior to be president of the United States", Strzok said.

The Strzok-Page saga has also attracted the personal attention of the president, who has frequently commented on the ongoing scandal as evidence of a "witch hunt" against him.

Strzok responded to Gohmert's questioning and attacks by saying he "always told the truth".

"The credibility of a witness is always an issue", Gohmert said, as the committee fell into momentary chaos.

Page had been subpoenaed to appear on Capitol Hill on Thursday, but did not comply with the order because Congress hadn't given her "sufficient time to prepare".


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    The hearing was often raucous and seemed at times more like a TV comedy about Congress than a real committee hearing. At one point, Gowdy asked what the word "it" meant in Strzok's text . "I have always told the truth", Strzok said.