Johnson asks DOJ for more information on Strzok and Page messages

Johnson asks DOJ for more information on Strzok and Page messages
© Greg Nash

Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonGraham vows Biden, Ukraine probe after impeachment trial GOP warns of 'drawn out' executive privilege battle over Bolton testimony  Senate Republicans confident they'll win fight on witnesses MORE (R-Wis.) is asking the Justice Department to turn over additional information about the two FBI officials who sent text messages disparaging President Trump during the election. 

Johnson, the chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, in a letter to Deputy Attorney General Rod RosensteinRod RosensteinRosenstein says he authorized release of Strzok-Page texts Journalist alleging Obama administration spied on her seeks to reopen case Rosenstein on his time in Trump administration: 'We got all the big issues right' MORE on Wednesday called for Justice to turn over more materials related to the messages between FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, including those previously considered missing.


“I respectfully request that the Department produce all text messages newly recovered, sent or received by Peter Strzok and Lisa Page for the period December 4, 2016 to May 17, 2017,” he wrote.

The Wisconsin senator also requested all records from over a dozen FBI officials from 2015 to the present period related to the FBI's investigation into Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonSanders to Clinton: 'This is not the kind of rhetoric that we need' Sekulow vows Bidens, Ukraine will be part of Trump impeachment defense Elizabeth Warren: More 'Hillary' than Hillary MORE's email server while she served as secretary of State. Johnson named the officials, who include Strzok, Page, former FBI Director James ComeyJames Brien ComeyCNN's Axelrod says impeachment didn't come up until 80 minutes into focus group NYT: Justice investigating alleged Comey leak of years-old classified info Bernie-Hillary echoes seen in Biden-Sanders primary fight MORE and FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, who announced he was stepping down from his position on Monday.

"According to the text messages produced to the Committee, Ms. Page and Mr. Strzok make references to communicating with other FBI employees via text message, phone call, email, and voice mail,” Johnson wrote. 

He also asked questions focusing on the bureau's phone glitch that initially led to the loss of records, including some of the text messages, for a roughly five-month period on agency-issued devices.

Johnson wrote that he wanted to know whether the FBI knew they had a gap in their records, whether a device glitch had occurred before and whether any of the FBI officials they are seeking records from were also affected by the data loss.

The glitch reportedly affected thousands of mobile phones used by the FBI.

Special counsel Robert Mueller removed Strzok and Page from his ongoing Russia probe last year after an internal investigation revealed that they had sent texts messages criticizing Trump during the election. Other messages were critical of other political figures as well.

Johnson is one of a number of GOP lawmakers to have expressed concern that the Strzok and Page messages reveal a political bias against the president within the top levels of the government.

The FBI further stroked GOP ire when the agency announced some of their records on Strzok and Page were missing.

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz announced they had successfully recovered the missing texts last month, shortly after 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 announced a probe into the missing messages.