News

Politics & Policy

Peter Strzok, Agent Fired for Anti-Trump Texts, Sues FBI

Former FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok prior to testifying on Capitol Hill, July 12, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

Former FBI agent Peter Strzok on Tuesday filed a lawsuit against the FBI and the Justice Department, accusing officials of caving to pressure from President Trump to fire him last year over texts he sent during the 2016 campaign disparaging Trump.

Strzok, who was fired last August, was thrust into the spotlight of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation after anti-Trump texts between him and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, with whom he was having an extramarital affair, were unearthed on his FBI-issued cell phone.

Strzok called Trump an “idiot” in the texts and at one point reassured Page that Trump would not win the election, writing, “No he won’t. We’ll stop it.”

The lawsuit claims the FBI violated Strzok’s First and Fifth Amendment rights by dismissing him over perceived bias in his texts, and denied him due process by refusing to allow him to challenge his firing. It further claims that the DOJ violated his right to privacy by leaking the text messages to reporters before Congress had seen them.

“The discharge decision was made by [FBI] Deputy Director David Bowdich, and was the result of unrelenting pressure from President Trump and his political allies in Congress and the media,” the suit said.

Strzok and Page were both members of the teams investigating Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state and foreign interference in the 2016 election. Strzok would go on to work on Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s relationship with Russia.

Justice Department inspector general Michael Horowitz issued a 500-page report last year concluding that Strzok exhibited a “biased state of mind” during the Clinton investigation, a conclusion that led to the former agent’s firing. Initially, Candice Will, the director of the FBI’s Office of Personal responsibility, had recommended Strzok merely “be demoted and suspended for sixty days without pay,” according to the suit.

Most Popular

U.S.

What The 1619 Project Leaves Out

“The goal of The 1619 Project, a major initiative from The New York Times that this issue of the magazine inaugurates, is to reframe American history by considering what it would mean to regard 1619 as our nation’s birth year,” The New York Times Magazine editors declare. “Doing so requires us to place ... Read More
Sports

It’s Time for Colin Kaepernick to Move On

Colin Kaepernick. Remember him? Below-average quarterback. Above-average poseur. Not “activist,” not really. Activists actually say stuff. Kaepernick almost never says anything. He’s like the Queen or most popes — you have to read the deep-background musings of supposed members of his inner circle to get ... Read More
PC Culture

Courage Is the Cure for Political Correctness

This might come as some surprise to observers of our campus culture wars, but there was a time, not long ago, when the situation in American higher education was much worse. There a wave of vicious campus activism aimed at silencing heterodox speakers, and it was typically empowered by a comprehensive regime of ... Read More
Elections

Trump and the Black Vote

"Donald Trump is a racist, white supremacist, white nationalist. So are his supporters." Some version of that refrain is heard almost hourly somewhere in mainstream media. Democratic politicians seem to proclaim it more often than that. Listening only to the Left, you'd conclude that more than half a ... Read More