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At that time, investigators for the Justice Department

FBI agent feuds with GOP critics

Republicans fought bitterly Thursday with FBI agent Peter Strzok at a congressional hearing that frequently devolved into shouting matches about political bias between supporters of President Trump and defenders of the agency investigating him.

The mutual contempt felt between Republicans on one side and Democrats and the star canada goose outlet near me witness on the other was palpable from the very first question put to Strzok, whose conduct as the lead agent canada goose sale uk on FBI probes of Hillary Clinton and the Trump campaign has been sharply criticized by internal Justice Department investigators.

The day long hearing, which featured far more heated accusations than canada goose outlet winnipeg address new information, was a canada goose outlet online reviews naked display of the animus and canada goose outlet uk fake agitation in Washington that surrounds the ongoing investigation into whether any Trump associates conspired with Russia to interfere with the 2016 election.

Republicans accused Strzok and the FBI of pursuing politically canada goose outlet in vancouver motivated probes aimed at harming President Trump. Democrats called the entire hearing part of a GOP attempt to protect the president by tainting the work of special counsel Robert canada goose uk cheap canada goose S. Mueller III.

canada goose uk shop Lawmakers talked over each other and the witness, in sometimes starkly personal and intemperate terms. canada goose uk shop

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FBI agent Peter Strzok arrives for a closed door hearing on June 27, before the House Judiciary Committee. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

“I will not, based on direction of the FBI.. answer that question, because it goes to matters which are related to the ongoing investigations being undertaken by the special counsel’s office,” Strzok replied.

canada goose factory sale At that point, Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R Va.), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, interjected, threatening Strzok with a contempt citation if he did not answer. canada goose factory sale

canada goose uk outlet “Mr. Strzok, you are under subpoena and are required to answer the question,” Goodlatte said. Minutes earlier, Goodlatte had accused Strzok of “turning justice on its head.” canada goose uk outlet

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canada goose coats As Republicans berated Strzok over his work on the probes, Democrats sought to defend him through unsuccessful objections and parliamentary maneuvers, leading to arguments among lawmakers about Strzok while he sat listening at the witness table. canada goose coats

Rep. Steve Cohen (D Tenn.) described the FBI agent as an injured survivor.

buy canada goose jacket “If I could give you a Purple Heart, I would. You deserve one,” Cohen said. “It’s astonishing to me that you would be put on trial as you have today.” Purple Heart medals are awarded to military personnel wounded in combat. buy canada goose jacket

Strzok, a deputy assistant director at the FBI who oversaw counterintelligence cases, was removed from the Trump probe by Mueller in July 2017. At that time, investigators for the Justice Department inspector general discovered text messages between him and then canada goose womens outlet FBI lawyer Lisa Page in which they repeatedly disparaged Trump and expressed a strong desire that he not win the election.

Strzok’s work at the FBI became the subject of intense political battles in Congress after The Washington Post reported in December that he and Page, who had been canada goose outlet jackets involved in a romantic relationship, were under investigation by the inspector general over their texts. Page left the FBI earlier this year; Strzok is the focus of an internal investigation that could lead to his firing, but he is still technically an employee of the bureau.

Canada Goose Coats On Sale Rep. Louie Gohmert (R Tex.) raised the issue of Strzok’s extramarital affair with Page. Canada Goose Coats On Sale

cheap Canada Goose “I can’t help but wonder, when I see you looking there with a little smirk, how many times did you look so innocent into your wife’s eyes and lie to her about Lisa Page?” he asked. cheap Canada Goose

Lawmakers and the witness then started yelling, while the chairman sought to restore order in the room, and Rep. The fact that you would accuse me otherwise.. goes more to a discussion about your character and what you stand for.”

Strzok said that his political opinions did not amount to bias and that FBI personnel are trained not to let their opinions influence their work.

“There is simply no evidence of bias in my professional actions,” he said, calling Thursday’s hearing “just another victory notch in [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s belt and another milestone in our enemies’ campaign to tear America apart,” calling it “profoundly painful to watch and even worse to play a part in.”

[Strzok escorted out of FBI headquarters]

Much of the questioning focused on the text exchanges between Strzok and Page, and their comments about Trump. In one, Page wrote in 2016: “He’s not ever going to become president, right? Right?!” Strzok replied, “No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it.”

The text “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 horrible, disgusting behavior that the American population would not elect somebody demonstrating that behavior to be president of the United States,” he said.