Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page could be held in contempt of Congress

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page could be held in contempt of Congress

The FBI's J. Edgar Hoover Building in Washington, D.C.

Update: 7/12/18, 11:00 a.m. – CNN reported that Page has agreed to privately testify before a joint panel of the House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Friday.

WASHINGTON – Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page could be held in contempt of Congress if she does not appear on Capitol Hill for a closed-door deposition by Friday, two Republican congressmen said in a letter to Page’s attorney.

“The Judiciary Committee intends to initiate contempt proceedings on Friday July 13, 2018, at 10:30 a.m.,” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) wrote Amy Jeffress Esq. on Wednesday.

The congressmen added: “As an additional, and final, accommodation, the Committee will stay the contempt proceedings provided Lisa Page appears voluntarily on July 12, 2018, at 10 a.m. at a previously scheduled public hearing regarding relevant issues under investigation. While your client would still be deposed at some point, appearance at the hearing scheduled for Thursday July 12, 2018, at 10 a.m. would negate the need for immediate contempt proceedings. Alternatively, your client, Lisa Page, could present herself for a deposition on Friday, July 13, 2018, at 10 a.m. This option would stay contempt proceedings and resolve the Committees’ need to depose your client.”

Jeffress notified Goodlatte on Tuesday that her client would not comply with the committee’s subpoena because the FBI did not provide requested documents. The subpoena requested Page’s appearance on Wednesday morning. Jeffress said Page is willing to testify later this month.

Page and fellow agent Peter Strzok exchanged text messages in which Strzok said they would stop Donald Trump from being elected president, according to a DoJ inspector general report that was released last month.

“[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right?” Page wrote to Sztrok on Aug. 8, 2016.

“No he won’t. We’ll stop it,” Strzok replied.

The agents, who were dating at the time although both were married, were dismissed from Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigative team last year after it was discovered they had exchanged anti-Trump texts. Strzok was a lead investigator in the Clinton email probe.

Text messages between Page and Strzok were provided to Congress in February and have become the focus of Republican claims of political bias at the FBI and DoJ, but these latest messages were not part of that package sent to Congress. They were provided to Attorney General Jeff Sessions several days before the IG report was released.

Strzok privately testified before a joint Judiciary/Oversight committee panel for 11 hours two weeks ago. He is expected to publicly testify before the committees this morning.

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