WASHINGTON (CBSLA/AP) – President Trump has ordered the declassification of documents and text messages related to the Russia investigation as sought by House Republicans.
A statement from the White House Press Secretary’s office “directed the Department of Justice (including the FBI) to publicly release all text messages relating to the Russia investigation, without redaction, of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr.”
Trump is making the extraordinary move in response to calls from his allies in Congress who say they believe the Russia investigation was tainted by anti-Trump bias within the ranks of the FBI and Justice Department.
Trump is declassifying about 20 pages of the warrant obtained to monitor the communications of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page and FBI interviews conducted to secure that warrant.
The president tweeted about the text messages earlier Monday.
The tweet read: “Immediately after Comey’s firing Peter Strzok texted to his lover, Lisa Page “We need to Open the case we’ve been waiting on now while Andy (McCabe, also fired) is acting. Page answered, “We need to lock in (redacted). In a formal chargeable way. Soon.” Wow, a conspiracy caught?”
According to the statement, Trump declassified about 20 pages of the warrant obtained under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to monitor the communications of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page and FBI interviews conducted to secure that warrant.
He also is declassifying all FBI reports documenting interviews with senior Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, who was in contact with ex-British spy Christopher Steele. Steele was a longtime FBI informant whose Democratic-funded research into Trump ties to Russia was compiled into a dossier that has become a partisan lightning rod since its publication in January 2017.
According to Sanders’ statement, Trump also directed the Justice Department to publicly release in full the text messages of Comey, Ohr, former FBI Director Andrew McCabe, former FBI lawyer Lisa Page and former FBI special agent Peter Strzok.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)