Peter Strzok fired by FBI over anti-Trump text messages

In this July 12, 2018 file photo, FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is seated to testify before the the House Committees on the Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform during a hearing on "Oversight of FBI and DOJ Actions Surrounding the 2016 Election," on Capitol Hill in Washington. His lawyer said he was fired late Friday by FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich.
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In this July 12, 2018 file photo, FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is seated to testify before the the House Committees on the Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform during a hearing on "Oversight of FBI and DOJ Actions Surrounding the 2016 Election," on Capitol Hill in Washington. His lawyer said he was fired late Friday by FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich.

Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Credit: AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Peter Strzok has been fired by the FBI amid ongoing scrutiny of text messages he sent that were critical of Donald Trump before he was elected to serve as president in 2016, according to multiple reports.

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Strzok, a 22-year veteran of the bureau who worked on the investigations into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server, was fired Friday at the command of Deputy FBI Director David Bowdich despite the fact that officials had determined he should face only a demotion and a suspension, according to The Washington Post.

“This isn’t the normal process in any way more than name,” Strzok’s attorney, Aitan Goelman, told the newspaper. In a statement, he added, “This decision should be deeply troubling to all Americans.”

Strzok came under fire after the inspector general found a series of disparaging text messages about Trump sent between him and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page during Trump’s presidential campaign.

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“(Trump’s) not ever going to become president, right? Right?!” Page wrote in one text obtained by investigators before the 2016 election, according to the inspector general.

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

The president has frequently pointed to the text messages as evidence that the investigation has been biased against him from the beginning.

Explore>> Trump: Justice Department report wrong in finding no bias by FBI

“Based on the fact that Strzok was in charge of the Witch Hunt, will it be dropped?” Trump wrote in a tweet Monday, referencing the Russia investigation. “It is a total Hoax. No Collusion, No Obstruction – I just fight back!”

Strzok had been assigned to work on Mueller's team, but he was removed from the investigation last summer after the anti-Trump messages surfaced, The New York Times reported. He was instead placed into a position in human resources, according to the newspaper.

Strzok has apologized for sending the text messages, which he said reflected his personal views and did not affect the investigation.  In a report released in June, the inspector general said there was no evidence that either Strzok or Page used their political views to guide their investigation. However, he said that at least one exchange was "not only indicative of a biased state of mind but, even more seriously, implies a willingness to take official action to impact the presidential candidate's electoral prospects," according to the Times.

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A Look At Donald Trump's Presidency

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