Tags: text messages | lisa page | peter strzok | inspector general

Report: DOJ Watchdog Denies Role in Release of Peter Strzok Texts

Image: Report: DOJ Watchdog Denies Role in Release of Peter Strzok Texts
Michael Horowitz, inspector general of the Department Of Justice (Ron Sachs/AP)

By    |   Friday, 15 December 2017 09:44 PM

The inspector general's office of the Department of Justice said Friday that it was not consulted before agency officials disclosed text messages critical of President Donald Trump by Peter Strzok that led him to be removed from Russia special counsel Robert Mueller's team.

Michael Horowitz, the inspector general, told Democrats that his office was not consulted "in order to determine whether releasing the text messages met applicable ethical and legal standards before providing them to Congress," The Washington Examiner reports.

Three Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee — Reps. Jerrold Nadler and Hakeem Jeffries, both of New York, and Jamie Raskin of Maryland — had requested more information about the release of the texts between Strzok and Lisa Page, a lawyer who had also been assigned to the Mueller probe.

The texts — two anti-Trump and pro-Hillary Clinton messages each — were exchanged during the 2016 presidential campaign.

They were disclosed to news organizations on Tuesday.

Horowitz's contention that his office was not consulted in advance conflicted with the account of tweeted Friday by Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores, the Examiner reports.

Flores tweeted that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told Congress Wednesday that "after initial inquiries from Congress, the DAG consulted with the IG, and the IG determined that he had no objection to the department providing the material to the congressional committees that had requested it (discussion w IG was only about Congress)."

But Flores then stressed that "once we provided them to Congress, there was no legal or ethical obligation against sharing them w media."

After Horowitz's letter was released, Flores tweeted that it was consistent with what she had said previously.

Strzok was removed from Mueller's team in August and moved to a human resources position after disclosures that he and Page had "exchanged text messages during the Clinton investigation and campaign season in which they expressed anti-Trump sentiments and other comments that appeared to favor Clinton," the Examiner reports.

Strzok also served as a lead investigator in the probe of Clinton's private email server use.

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The inspector general's office of the Department of Justice said Friday that it was not consulted before agency officials disclosed text messages critical of President Donald Trump by Peter Strzok that led him to be removed from Russia special counsel Robert Mueller's...
text messages, lisa page, peter strzok, inspector general
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2017-44-15
Friday, 15 December 2017 09:44 PM
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