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House and Senate intel committees are looking into whether leaders of the Trump-Russia investigation engaged in illegal leaking to the news media.
Incriminating text messages, as usual, are the focus.
FBI agent Peter Strzok (who spoke of the investigation being an “insurance policy” against Trump remaining in office if elected) and lawyer Lisa Page engaged in a series of texts suggesting they knew ahead of time about an article in The Wall Street Journal and would need to pretend they merely found it on the internet in front of their colleagues.
More on this shocking story from The Hill:
“Article is out, but hidden behind paywall so can’t read it,” Page texted Strzok on Oct. 24, 2016.
“Wsj? Boy that was fast,” Strzok texted back, using the initials of the famed financial newspaper. “Should I ‘find’ it and tell the team?”
The text messages, which were reviewed by The Hill, show the two FBI agents discussed how they might make it appear they innocently discovered the article, such as through Google News alerts.
“I can get it like I do every other article that hits any Google News alerts, seriously,” Strzok wrote, adding he didn’t want his team hearing about the article “from someone else.”
Strzok played a key role in the early Russia election meddling probe before he was removed last summer by special counsel Robert Mueller for exchanging text messages critical of President Trump, then still a candidate, with Page.
The Justice Department has told Congress that Strzok had engaged in an affair with Page, who served as a lawyer advising FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
The Hill reviewed nearly three dozen texts in which the two agents discussed articles, tried to track down information about a specific New York Times reporter or opined about leaked information in stories that they fretted were “super specific.”
The FBI filed its “insurance policy” against Trump. But it may have left behind too much “paperwork” to cash in on it.