The Senate Homeland Security Committee released troves of documents Wednesday highlighting the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server.
The near-three year investigation was spearheaded by Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., and the Republican majority, and specifically highlights text messages between top FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page.
The interim report released Wednesday — titled “The Clinton Email Scandal And The FBI’s Investigation Of It” — claims the text messages “paint a picture of bias and animus, and certainly raise questions about possible corruption," Johnson said.
The oversight investigation will continue, the report claims.
The report notes the 400 pages of texts released by Johnson do not include those exchanged between Dec. 13, 2016 and May 17, 2017 — a crucial time during the Russia investigation. Those texts were originally thought to be lost because of a technical glitch, but the Justice Department said last month they had been recovered.
Strzok and Page worked on the Clinton probe together, and were also engaged in an extramarital affair.
In one exchange between the two, Page texted Strzok in August 2016 that he was "meant to protect the country from that menace,” and linked to an article about then-presidential nominee Donald Trump’s so-called “enablers.”
“Of course I’ll try and approach it that way. I just know it will be tough at times. I can protect our country at many levels, not sure if that helps,” Strzok replied.
On July 1, 2016 — four days before then-FBI Director James Comey announced no criminal charges would be brought against Clinton — then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch said she would follow the FBI’s recommendation. Page messaged Strzok that “it’s a real profile in [courage], since she knows no charges will be brought.”
"Potus wants to know everything we're doing," Page texted Strzok on Sept. 2, 2016. That text was in reference Comey, who had been preparing talking points for former President Obama regarding the probe into the former secretary of state.
Text messages from late September 2016 also raise concerns about when senior FBI officials learned that there were emails related to Clinton on the laptop of Huma Abedin’s husband, former Congressman Anthony Weiner.
“Got called up to Andy’s earlier ... hundreds of thousands of emails turned over by Weiner’s atty to sdny, includes a ton of material from spouse. Sending team up tomorrow to review... this will never end...” Srzok wrote to Page.
On Oct. 21, 2016, Strzok again told Page that Deputy Assistant Attorney General George Toscas became aware of the new Clinton emails — a week before Comey told Congress the FBI was reopening its probe because of the emails found on Weiner’s laptop.
“[T]he American presidential election, and thus, the state of the world, actually hangs in the balance,” Page said in a message to Strzok on Nov. 4, 2016 as the FBI finished its review of the emails on Weiner’s computer.
Strzok and Page were later assigned to special counsel Robert Mueller’s team, who was appointed on May 17, 2017, to investigate Russian meddling in the 2016 election and possible collusion with the Trump campaign,
The two discussed the possibility of joining the team just two days prior, with Strzok telling Page he had a “sense of unfinished business“ and called the probe an “investigation leading to impeachment?”
The two also lambasted Trump on multiple occasions, including on Election Day when Page wrote, "OMG THIS IS F***KING TERRIFYING."
Strzok responded, "Omg, I am so depressed."
"I bought all the president's men. Figure I need to brush up on watergate," Page later replied.
The last message between the two came on June 23, 2017, when Page told Strzok, "Please don't ever text me again."
In a tweet Wednesday morning, Trump called the documents “BOMBSHELLS.”