CNN political director: Strzok's claim that Trump texts aren't biased 'flat wrong on its face'

CNN political director David Chalian said Thursday that FBI agent Peter Strzok's assertion that anti-Trump texts he sent in 2016 do not indicate bias "is just flat wrong on its face."

Chalian was referring to a text exchange between Strzok and then-FBI lawyer Lisa Page, with whom he was reportedly having an affair, in which Strzok called then-candidate Donald Trump's behavior "horrible" and "disgusting." 

"[Y]ou should put nothing in text or e-mail that you are not comfortable seeing on the front page of The New York Times or on CNN’s banner," Chalian said during an interview on the network Thursday.


Chalian's remarks come the same day Strzok faced off with GOP members of the House Judiciary and House Oversight and Government Reform committees. Strzok, who is testifying on Capitol Hill under subpoena, faced several heated exchanges during the day's questioning.

"Strzok’s mission today is try to walk this line of ‘I have personal political views, it didn’t impact my work at all,'" Chalian said. "That may be true, but when he says that those texts, quote, 'not indicative of bias' — that’s just flat wrong on its face. It is indicative of bias."

Strzok was accused of anti-Trump bias by President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff pleads to Senate GOP: 'Right matters. And the truth matters.' Anita Hill to Iowa crowd: 'Statute of limitations' for Biden apology is 'up' Sen. Van Hollen releases documents from GAO investigation MORE and his Republican allies after the text messages came to light in a highly anticipated report from the Justice Department's internal watchdog last month. The watchdog concluded that it had no evidence bias affected the investigation into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonSchiff pleads to Senate GOP: 'Right matters. And the truth matters.' Hill.TV's Saagar Enjeti defends Tulsi Gabbard's lawsuit against Hillary Clinton Trump to hold rally on eve of New Hampshire primary MORE’s private email server.

"I understand his point is, ‘Well, that bias didn’t infiltrate into my work, into my conduct in the professional capacity,’ but you can understand why, when you look at the language of those texts, that it’s very easy to point to a bias that this FBI agent was expressing," Chalian continued.

When asked by Rep. Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyGreen says House shouldn't hold impeachment articles indefinitely Trump golfs with Graham ahead of impeachment trial Trey Gowdy returns to Fox News as contributor MORE (R-S.C.) if the Trump texts were biased, Strzok responded, “I do not think that bias was expressed in those text messages.”

“At no time, in any of these texts, did those personal beliefs ever enter into the realm of any action I took,” Strzok later said, noting that “multiple layers” of other FBI agents would not have allowed any “improper behavior.”

“They would not tolerate any improper behavior in me anymore than I would tolerate it in them," he said. "That is who we are as the FBI, and the suggestion that I, in some dark chamber somewhere in the FBI, would somehow cast aside all of these procedures, all of these safeguards, and somehow be able to do this is astounding to me."

“The proposition that that is going on and that might occur anywhere in the FBI deeply corrodes what the FBI is in American society, the effectiveness of their mission, and it is deeply destructive,” Strzok added. 

Trump weighed in on Twitter during his departure from a NATO meeting in Brussels on Thursday, slamming Page for "dodging a subpoena" to avoid being grilled by the House committees. In the same tweet, he goaded his attorney general, Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsLawmaker wants Chinese news outlet to register as foreign agent Trump-aligned group launches ad campaign hitting Doug Jones on impeachment ICE subpoenas Denver law enforcement: report MORE

"As I head out to a very important NATO meeting, I see that FBI Lover/Agent Lisa Page is dodging a Subpoena & is refusing to show up and testify. What can she possibly say about her statements and lies. So much corruption on the other side. Where is the Attorney General?"

Page agreed Thursday to meet with Congress behind closed doors on Friday