Coverup Caucus: At Peter Strzok’s Hearing House Republicans Do Putin’s Bidding

Strzok came off as credible and calm. House Republicans appeared unhinged and untethered to reality. The Kremlin came out on top.

FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is sworn in before the House Committees on the Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform during a hearing on “Oversight of FBI and DOJ Actions Surrounding the 2016 Election," on Capitol Hill, Thursday, July 12, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is sworn in before the House Committees on the Judiciary and Oversight and Government Reform during a hearing on “Oversight of FBI and DOJ Actions Surrounding the 2016 Election,” on Capitol Hill, Thursday, July 12, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The Rantt Rundown: Day 539 of the Trump presidency

The Big Story: FBI Agent Peter Strzok, whose anti-Trump text messages have become Republicans main talking point to try and undermine the Russia investigation, volunteered to testify at a hearing in front of the House Judiciary and Select Committees. At the hearing, Republicans continued their efforts to undermine the Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and Americans’ faith in U.S. institutions (some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s goals) and made a fool of themselves. You can read Vox‘s great breakdown of the hearing here, but here are some of the highlights.

The Context: It’s important to note that Strzok also had negative texts about Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, and there was no evidence of bias affecting his role in the Russia investigation. Also important to note that right when Special Counsel Robert Mueller was made aware of the text messages, Strzok was removed from the team. And most importantly: this is nothing more than a coordinated campaign on the part of President Trump, House Republicans, and conservative media to undermine the Russia investigation. This effort has extended into efforts to discredit the DOJ, FBI, and the U.S. Intelligence Community as a whole.

The U.S. Intelligence Community concluded that Russia’s longstanding objective has been to undermine the US-led liberal democratic order and our faith in democratic institutions. For decades, Russian propaganda has aimed to stir racial divisions, attack the credibility of the U.S. government, and try to weaken western influence. Today, we have a President, backed by the full support of his party and propaganda arms like Fox News, executing on our foreign adversary’s primary objectives.

In other news…

Day one of the NATO summit on Wednesday was plagued with misrepresentations and unfounded insults directed at America’s closest allies. From accusing Germany of being “a captive of Russia” to obfuscating the purpose of NATO, President Trump was in peak “dismantle the US-led, post-WWI, liberal world order” form. All of this before President Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 16th, a foreign adversary who has a vested interest in a weak NATO.

On Thursday, in a presser filled with contradictions, President Trump changed his tone on NATO but repeated the same lies….

Rundown // Donald Trump / FBI / Republican Party