House Committee Subpoenas Ex-FBI Lawyer

(The Washington Post) -

The House Judiciary Committee has subpoenaed former FBI lawyer Lisa Page to answer questions in a private deposition on Wednesday, where she will probably be asked about her now infamous anti-Trump texts and related topics, a person familiar with the matter said.

Page, who once played a key role in the high-profile investigations of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server and of Russian interference in the 2016 election, has become a target of President Donald Trump’s criticism in recent days for the texts she exchanged with FBI agent Peter Strzok, who also worked on both cases.

The Justice Department inspector general concluded that the two showed “willingness to take official action” to hurt Trump’s chances of becoming president.

Trump has criticized the investigation into whether his campaign coordinated with Russia to influence the election. That probe is being led by special counsel Robert Mueller.

“Public opinion has turned strongly against the Rigged Witch Hunt and the ‘Special’ Counsel because the public understands that there was no Collusion with Russia (so ridiculous), that [Page and Strzok] were a fraud against our Nation & that the only Collusion was with the Dems!” Trump wrote in a weekend tweet.

It was not immediately clear whether Page would honor the subpoena, first reported by the Associated Press, and appear before the committee on Wednesday. Amy Jeffress, Page’s lawyer, said in a statement that they had been working to arrange Page’s “voluntary appearance,” and “asked the Committee staff to explain the scope of the investigation and provide sufficient notice that would allow her to prepare, which are normal conditions for congressional committees, but these committees have not followed the normal process.”

Jeffress also said the FBI had not yet provided Page, who left the FBI after her anti-Trump texts became public, with notes and other documents that might help her prepare, so they were “still waiting to work out a reasonable date for her interview.”

“Lisa has cooperated voluntarily with another congressional committee that had no objection to explaining the scope of its investigation or providing sufficient notice for her interview,” Jeffress said. “Lisa also cooperated fully with the OIG [the Office of Inspector General] investigation and appeared voluntarily for multiple interviews, including after she left the FBI.”

A spokeswoman for the Republicans on the panel did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

Strzok is scheduled to testify publicly before the committee on Thursday in a hearing that did not hit the calendar without drama. Strzok first testified privately, and his lawyer alleged that Republicans selectively leaked and mischaracterized his words to make political points.

“More than anyone, Special Agent Strzok wants to testify publicly and attempt to have the unfiltered truth be heard,” Aitan Goelman, Strzok’s attorney, said last week. “Members of Congress have made this as difficult as possible – first demanding a secretive hearing and then selectively leaking and misrepresenting his words – but Pete will continue to play by the rules and act with integrity.”