Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Ron Johnson (R-WI) said Tuesday an informant has confirmed the existence of a “secret society” inside the FBI working against President Donald Trump.
“The secret society — we have an informant that’s talking about a group that were holding secret meetings off-site,” Johnson said on Fox News’s Special Report. “There’s so much smoke here, there’s so much suspicions.”
Reps. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) and Trey Gowdy (R-SC), House oversight and government reform committee chairman, first revealed there were texts between FBI officials Peter Strzok and Lisa Page mentioning the “secret society” on Monday.
“We learned today about information that after — in the immediate aftermath of [Trump’s] election, that there may have been a secret society of folks within the Department of Justice and the FBI, to include Page and Strzok, that would be working against them,” Ratcliffe said on Fox News’s The Story.
“I’m not saying that actually happened, but when folks speak in those terms, they need to come forward to explain the context with which they used those terms,” he added.
Gowdy said the “secret society” discussion began the day after the election.
“There’s a text exchange between these two FBI agents, these two supposedly objective facts-centric FBI agents, that perhaps this is the first meeting of the ‘secret society,’” he said.
“I’m going to want to know what secret society are you talking about, because you are supposed to be investigating objectively the person who just won [by] the electoral college,” he added. “I’m going to want to know.”
Strzok and Page were engaged in an extramarital affair and had exchanged tens of thousands of text messages that talked about how much they loathed President Trump and how they supported Hillary Clinton. They also discussed an “insurance policy” in the case of Trump’s election.
At the time they exchanged these messages, they were working on the Clinton email investigation, the FBI’s Russia investigation, and the subsequent special counsel team. The Justice Department’s inspector general, who is conducting an investigation into whether the FBI handled the Clinton and the Russia probes with political bias, first discovered the texts.
The Justice Department released a batch of those text messages to Congress on Friday, which included the text about the “secret society.” Johnson said the committee would dig to find out more about the “secret society.”
“This is not a distraction,” he said, pushing back against Democrat criticism. “Again, this is bias, potentially corruption at the highest levels at the FBI.”
Johnson also joined the growing chorus of Republicans calling for an additional special counsel to look into DOJ and FBI corruption, separate from the special counsel headed by Robert Mueller.
“Robert Mueller used to run the FBI,” he said. “He is in no position to do an investigation over this kind of misconduct.”
“So I think at this point in time we probably should be looking at a special counsel to undertake this investigation, but Congress is going to have to continue to dig,” he said.