Donald Trump renewed his attack on ex-FBI lawyer Lisa Page on Monday, one day after the publication of an interview in which she spoke out about the president’s taunting of her and her former FBI colleague Peter Strzok.
On Sunday, the Daily Beast published journalist Molly Jong-Fast’s interview with Page, who spoke for the first time about the experience of being targeted by the president over her text-message conversations with Strzok, with whom she was romantically involved. Trump has often cited those texts — in which Page and Strzok speak disparagingly of Trump — as the genesis of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
At at Oct. 11 rally in Minneapolis, Trump famously acted out Strzok having an orgasm as he called out Page’s name. That performance, Page said, was what motivated her to speak to the press.
“Honestly, his demeaning fake orgasm was really the straw that broke the camel’s back,” she told the Daily Beast.
“The president of the United States is calling me names to the entire world. He’s demeaning me and my career. It’s sickening,” she added.
Republicans have seized on the “insurance policy” text written by Strzok on Aug. 15, 2016, two weeks after the FBI had begun an investigation into the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. That probe was launched after the FBI was informed of a claim by Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos that Russia had compromising information on Hillary Clinton.
Strzok, who had exchanged disparaging messages with Page about Trump, wrote to her about the urgency with which the FBI needed to investigate possible collusion with Russia.
“I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s [former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe] office — that there’s no way he gets elected — but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk. It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before 40,” Strzok wrote.
The results of an internal Justice Department investigation are expected to be released on Dec. 9 and, according to news reports, will clear the FBI and its top officials of acting to influence the election. After his exchanges with Page were published, Strzok was removed from the Mueller investigation, then fired by the bureau. He has filed a lawsuit against the DOJ and the FBI. Page resigned from the FBI in 2018.
Trump’s claim that Page’s messages with Strzok were improperly deleted was debunked last year by a DOJ inspector general report that found there was “no evidence” to suggest either Page or Strzok “attempted to circumvent” FBI procedure on retaining data.
Trump seemed to have missed the IG report, tweeting out his own theory five days after it had been released.
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