(CNSNews.com) -- During a White House press conference on Thursday, President Donald Trump cited actions taken by (now former) FBI officials to undermine his 2016 campaign and first year as president, stressing that they concocted an "insurance policy" to get him "out of office" and "that's treason."
After discussing a $16 billion aid package to U.S. farmers at the White House, President Trump answered questions from reporters. Citing one of the president's tweets that mentions "treason," NBC News reporter Peter Alexander asked, "Sir, the Constitution says treason is punishable by death. You've accused your adversaries of treason. Who specifically are you accusing of treason?"
Trump said, "Well I think a number of people, and I think what you look at is that they have unsuccessfully tried to take down the wrong person. If you look at [James] Comey, if you look at [Andrew] McCabe, if you look at probably people higher than that. If you look at [Peter] Strzok, if you look at his lover Lisa Page, his wonderful lover."
"The two lovers, they talked openly," said Trump. "You know they didn't use their private server because they didn't want to get caught, so they used the government server. That was not a good move."
“He [Strzok] talked about the ‘insurance policy’ just in case Crooked Hillary loses, and that didn’t work out too well for them,” said the president, referencing the text messages between Strzok and Page.
"So you look at them," he said. "They wanted an insurance policy so that should she [Clinton] for any reason lose -- remember 100 million to 1 [victory], maybe he said 100 million to nothing -- but should she lose, we’ll have an 'insurance policy,' and we’ll get this guy out of office."
"That’s what they said and that’s what they meant," said the president. "That’s treason. That’s treason. They couldn't win the election and that's what happened."
"And that's what's happening right now because -- without the treason word, I guess -- but that's what's happening now," he said. "They don't feel they can win the election [in 2020]. So they're trying to do the [death by a] thousand stabs. Keep stabbing."
"Let's have a financial [investigation]," he continued. "Let's have -- and if you look, for $40 million I would think seriously that [Special Counsel] Bob Mueller and his group of 18 killers [lawyers] have gone over my taxes. They've gone over my financial statements to a level that nobody has gone over them before. And they were not discussed even. They weren't even discussed or brought up. I have great [financial] statements."
U.S. Attorney General William Barr has assigned U.S. Attorney John H. Durham of Connecticut to investigate the origins of the Russia collusion story and actions taken by FBI and DOJ officials in 2016-17.
In addition, DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz will soon release a report on former FBI Director James Comey, who was fired by President Trump in May 2017. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who recommended that Comey be fired, resigned on May 10, 2019.
Andrew McCabe was the FBI deputy director under Comey and then acting director after Comey left the Bureau. McCabe was fired on March 16, 2018, after the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility recommended his termination for lacking "candor" in answering questions under oath and for leaking information to the news media.
Peter Strozk was chief of counter-intelligence at the FBI. He led the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server and he initally assisted Special Counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation into the Russia collusion story. Mueller removed him from the case after the disclosure of Strzok and Page's anti-Trump and pro-Clinton text messages. Strzok was fired on Aug. 10, 2018 by FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich.
Lisa Page was a senior attorney at the FBI, advisor to Andrew McCabe, and the adulterous lover of Peter Strzok. Page, whose text messages reveal a deep animus against Trump and his 2016 campaign, had also assisted in the Clinton email case and in the Mueller investigation. Page resigned from the FBI on May 4, 2018.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has said that the actions taken by Strzok and Page constituted a "coup" against President Trump.
In the Constitution, treason is discussed in Article III, Section 3: "1: Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
"2: The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted."
Also, in Article II, Section 4, the Constitution states, "The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors."
In August 2018, former CIA Director John Brennan said of President Trump, "I called his behavior treasonous which is to betray one's trust and to aiding and abet the enemy, and I stand very much by that claim. ... I think these are abnormal times and I think a lot of people have spoken out against what Mr. Trump has done. And maybe it’s my warning, training as an intelligence professional.
"I have seen the lights blinking red in terms of what Mr. Trump has done and is doing and is bringing this country down on the global stage and fueling and feeding divisiveness in our country."
In a July 2018 tweet, Brennan also said Trump was "treasonous" and "in the pocket of [Vladimir] Putin."
When he applied for a job at the CIA in 1980, Brennan admitted that he had voted for the Communist Party presidential candidate in the 1976 election. Brennan was selected to be the CIA director by President Barack Obama.
Commenting on Brennan's "treasonous" remarks about President Trump, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said, “You know, John Brennan started out his adulthood by voting for the Communist Party presidential candidate. He’s now ending his career by showing himself to be the most biased, bigoted, over-the-top, hyperbolic, sort of unhinged director of the CIA we’ve ever had, and really it’s an insult to everything about our government to have a former head of the CIA calling the president ‘treasonous’ just because he doesn’t like him.”