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Ryan issues warning to ex-FBI lawyer defying subpoena
13 July 2018, 11:35 | Darnell Patrick
Lisa Page will not appear for Capitol Hill interview despite subpoena, attorney says
That deposition had been intended by Republicans to set the stage for an open hearing scheduled by the same panels on Thursday with FBI Agent Peter Strzok, with whom she had a romantic relationship.
Former FBI agent Lisa Page is defying a congressional subpoena and will not appear before a closed-door session of the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. President Trump has seized on the Strzok and Page's texts to denounce the Mueller probe as nothing more than a "witch hunt".
Strzok, meanwhile, is scheduled to testify publicly on Thursday before a joint hearing of the House Judiciary and Oversight committees.
Jerrold Nadler of NY, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, and Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the party's ranking member on the Oversight panel, said the Republicans' focus on Page and Strzok was meant to undermine the Russian Federation investigation now being run by Special Council Robert Mueller. "In fact, Lisa and I went to the Federal Bureau of Investigation today to review the materials that were previously produced to Congress relating to her proposed interview, but after waiting for more than three hours, we were not provided with any documents". It was then that he heard the news that she may defy the subpoena and refuse to testify and condemned it as a "total disgrace". The DOJ watchdog published a report last month that revealed messages between Strzok and Page which suggested the two of them, along with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, would try and stop Trump from getting elected.
A report by the Justice Department's internal watchdog released last month detailed the inflammatory texts between the two, including an exchange in which Strzok wrote "we'll stop it" in reference to a potential Trump election win. If she wants to come and plead the Fifth, that's her choice.
Lisa Page has ignored a subpoena from Congressional investigators who have abandoned the Russian Federation investigation and pivoted to investigating the FBI instead. "It's mandatory. She needs to comply", Ryan said after a regular House GOP conference meeting.
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Ryan, asked about Page's decision not to testify Wednesday, said, "I am very disturbed by this". However, on Tuesday, Page showed signs of cold feet when her lawyer, Amy Jeffress, issued a statement complaining about Committee staff.
In response, House Judiciary Chairman Robert Goodlatte said Page has known for months about an interview, and the committee will use "all tools at our disposal" to obtain it. But a subpoena to testify before Congress is not optional.
Strzok had a leading role in the Clinton probe and was removed from the Mueller investigation after the texts were discovered a year ago.
Page later left the Federal Bureau of Investigation but Strzok remains.
The committees have focused much of their ire on Strzok, who was interviewed privately by lawmakers on the two committees for 11 hours June 27.
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