An FBI official assigned to Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III's probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election was removed this summer after his bosses discovered texts shared with another official attacking President Donald Trump.
Meanwhile, the inspector general's office at the Justice Department said the incident is part of a wider probe into how the FBI has handled investigations relating to the election.
The people discussing the matter did not further describe the political messages between Strzok and Page, except to say the two would sometime react to campaign news of the moment.
A spokesperson for the special counsel's office, Peter Carr, said "Immediately upon learning of the allegations, the special counsel's office removed Strzok from the investigation", reported New York Times. A review of the texts is now underway to determine whether the two agents allowed political bias to influence their work, but regardless of what that investigation concludes, the story is sure to provide ammunition for those, like President Trump and his defenders, who have accused the Mueller investigation, FBI, and overall intelligence community of being driven by partisanship.
Strzok's attorney refused to comment on the publication.
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"The January 2017 statement issued by the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (OIG) announcing its review of allegations regarding various actions of the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in advance of the 2016 election stated that the OIG review would, among other things, consider whether certain underlying investigative decisions were based on improper considerations and that we also would include issues that might arise during the course of the review".
Strzok also worked on the FBI investigation previous year into whether then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information through her use of private email servers while Secretary of State.
The agent, Peter Strzok, is considered one of the most experienced and trusted F.B.I. counterintelligence investigators.
One of the only times I've ever seen my father, a career military man and Vietnam veteran, express genuine concern over the direction of our country was in the wake of the FBI's fall from grace under James Comey.
During the Clinton email investigation, Page was a regular participant when Comey would hold "skinny group" meetings on the case - a small collection of advisers that gathered to address sensitive cases, according to people familiar with the case.