Rep. Gaetz Demands Answers From Deputy AG Rosenstein on Bias at FBI

By Michael W. Chapman | December 20, 2017 | 3:27pm EST
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.)

( -- Representative Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who serves on the House Judiciary Committee -- which has oversight of the Justice Department and the FBI -- sent a letter this week to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein demanding that he provide answers that he promised to provide at a hearing last week about apparent bias and conflicts of interest at the DOJ and the FBI. 

Gaetz particularly is seeking details about the DOJ's handling of the so-called Trump-Russia "dossier," which was partly paid for by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee through the opposition research firm Fusion GPS and to British ex-spy Christopher Steele.

When he was FBI director, James Comey described the dossier as "salacious and unverified."  However, it has been learned that Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce J. Ohr, in campaign year 2016, met with Christopher Steele. Ohr also met with Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson. Further, it was discovered that Ohr's wife, Nellie Ohr, works for Fusion GPS. 

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. (YouTube) 

In early December, Ohr was stripped of his associate deputy attorney general title and ousted form his office on the DOJ's fourth floor, a few doors down from Rosenstein.

In his Dec. 18 letter to Rosenstein, Rep. Gaetz says, "In your December 13 testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, you said that were unable to answer several of my questions, as well as the questions of my colleagues, because you needed to check your information before providing an answer. I appreciate your commitment to accuracy. Now that you are able to check and confirm the information you provide, I would like to ask again:


" 1) Was [FBI official] Peter Strzok either the recipient or the sender of any documents or correspondence related to the 'tarmac meeting' of former Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former President William Clinton? If so, please provide copies of any and all such documents.

" 2) When did the Department of Justice become aware that Nellie Ohr was employed by Fusion GPS? Since her husband, Bruce Ohr, served as the Associate Deputy Attorney General, did her employment with Fusion GPS raise any concerns about potential conflicts-of-interest among anyone within the Department of Justice or the Federal Bureau of Investigation? Were these concerns addressed in any way?

FBI official Peter Strzok.  (YouTube) 

"3)  When did the Department of Justice learn about Bruce Ohr’s meeting with Christopher Steele, and his meeting with Glenn Simpson? When I asked you these questions during your testimony, you said that you were not in a position to provide that information, but that the Department of Justice has agreed to turn over relevant information to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. I should not need to point out that the House Committee on the Judiciary, not the Intelligence Committee, has oversight over the Department of Justice. Your answer to this question is relevant to our oversight capacity."

"The American people have seen your testimony, and have been left with more questions than answers," said Rep. Gaetz.  "So too have my fellow members of the House Committee on the Judiciary. With this letter, I hope to receive answers."

Peter Strzok is an FBI counterintelligence officer who was assigned by then-FBI Director James Comey to participate in the investigation of Hillary Clinton's illicit use of a private email server as Secretary of State. Strzok revised Comey's memo on Clinton in 2016, changing the language about her conduct from "grossly negligent" to "extremely careless."

FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.  (YouTube) 

Strzok was selected by Special Counsel Robert Mueller in 2017 to assist with the Trump-Russia "collusion" case. In August, it was discovered that Strzok had been having a long-term extra-marital affair with FBI lawyer Lisa Page, who also is married, and who was assigned to Mueller for awhile and then reassigned to the FBI office under Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. 

McCabe is under investigation for a variety of issues related to the Clinton email case, including the fact that his wife, Dr. Jill McCabe, received more than $700,000 in late 2015 from political action committees overseen by Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe -- a long-time Clinton friend and ally -- and the Democrats. McCabe reportedly did not recuse himself from the Clinton case until one week before the 2016 election. 

Strzok and Page exchanged more than 10,000 text messages over the last few years, most of which are still under review by the DOJ. However, in the texts released so far it is clear that both Strzok and Page despised Donald Trump and strongly supported Hillary Clinton for president. Strzok and Page, in several of their texts, described Trump as a "douchebag," a "menace," and a "loathsome human." 

Special Counsel Robert Mueller.  (YouTube) 


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