Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz testified today that his investigation uncovered “evidence of people’s political bias” within the FBI.
The Daily Caller reports that Sen. Ron Johnson began his questioning of the Inspector General by noting that Horowitz did not believe that former FBI assistant director Bill Priestap was politically motivated in his opening of the investigation into the Trump campaign.
“But, in both of these investigations, you found political bias?” asked Johnson.
Horowitz responded, “We found through the text messages evidence of people’s political bias, correct.”
Later on in the hearing, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) asked, “Was it your conclusion that political bias did not affect any part of the Page investigation, any part of Crossfire Hurricane?”
“We did not reach that conclusion,” Horowitz replied. “We have been very careful in connection with the FISA for the reasons you mentioned to not reach that conclusion, in part, as we’ve talked about earlier: the alteration of the email, the text messages associated with the individual who did that, and then our inability to explain or understand or get good explanations so we could understand why this all happened.”
Yesterday, the chief judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court issued a strong rebuke of the FBI’s handling of Carter Page’s surveillance application process and has gave the bureau a January 10 deadline to come up with solutions.
The rare public order from presiding judge Rosemary M. Collyer states, “This order responds to reports that personnel of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) provided false information to the National Security Division (NSD) of the Department of Justice, and withheld material information from NSD which was detrimental to the FBI’s case, in connection with four applications to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) for authority to conduct electronic surveillance of a U. S. citizen named Carter W. Page,” Collyer wrote.
The order continues, “The FBI’s handling of the Carter Page applications, as portrayed in the [Office of Inspector General] report, was antithetical to the heightened duty of candor described above. The frequency with which representations made by FBI personnel turned out to be unsupported or contradicted by information in their possession, and with which they withheld information detrimental to their case, calls into question whether information contained in other FBI applications is reliable.”
The special order comes days after the release of Horowitz’s report which uncovered 17 “significant errors or omissions” in the FBI’s FISA applications for Carter Page.