House GOP weighs contempt against key witness in Federal Bureau of Investigation probes

Peter Strzok and Lisa Page

House Republican leaders strongly suggested they would seek punitive measures against former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, a key witness in their reviews of the bureau's probes into Hillary Clinton's emails and President Trump's suspected Russian Federation ties, after she refused to appear Wednesday under a summons for an interview with two congressional committees.

House Republicans have suggested the Federal Bureau of Investigation was conspiring against Trump during and after his presidential campaign, and the House Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform committees are investigating the agency's actions.

"The Committees would be asking Lisa about materials that she has not yet been shown", Page's attorney Amy Jeffress said on Tuesday, explaining Page's refusal to show up for Wednesday's deposition. And she also said Page has been cooperating with the probes, and she expected Page to appear before the committees "in the near future".

She has known for months that the House Judiciary Committee has sought her testimony as part of our joint investigation with the Oversight Committee into decisions made by the Justice Department in 2016, and she has no excuse for her failure to appear.

"Congressional subpoenas for testimony are not optional", House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) said Wednesday, promising that "we will do what we need to do to protect this branch of government". "But a subpoena to testify before Congress is not optional; it's mandatory". If the full House does vote to hold someone in contempt, the matter then moves to the courts, where it has often stalled.

He said that by Page not agreeing to show up, she's adding to the complexity of her legal woes.

"She was a part of the mess that we have uncovered over at DOJ".

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"This investigation is a political charade-a platform to elevate far-right conspiracy theories and undermine the Special Counsel's ongoing criminal investigation of the President and his campaign aides, which has already produced five guilty pleas and criminal charges against 23 individuals and entities", said Representative Jerrold Nadler, the ranking member of the Committee on the Judiciary.

But her lawyer said Page will testify at some point.

Committee chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte criticized Page in a statement Tuesday night. Read his hate filled and totally biased Emails and the answer is clear!

In a letter Jeffress sent to the Judiciary Committee on June 28 that was obtained by The Associated Press, she raises another issue.

Strzok was questioned for 11 hours over his role and alleged bias in a closed hearing of the two committees two weeks ago. When he returns to Capitol Hill for Thursday's hearing he will be speaking publicly about the messages for the first time.

In his tweet, Trump called Strzok and Page the "FBI lovers" in a reference to the fact that the pair were in a romantic relationship.

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