That reality comes through in the texts between Strzok and Page, who were reportedly in a romantic relationship. The messages show a pair of FBI employees who indeed detested Trump, but also detested many if not most Washington players in both parties and all institutions, and owed their allegiance to the bureau itself.
Parts of the texts have been previously reported, but the full logs were released by the Senate Homeland Security Committee Tuesday. The president tweeted Wednesday morning that “NEW FBI TEXTS ARE BOMBSHELLS!” In fact, the most interesting elements of the texts were long ago reported; the balance is largely banal, much of it consumed with internal politics. (Most of what goes on inside the FBI, it seems, is no more interesting than what goes on inside your office.)
Across the months of texts, Strzok and Page dismiss nearly everyone in politics who comes to their attention. Strzok complains that former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson pushes “a wildly liberal interpretation of immigration responsibilities.” Page “hope[s] Paul Ryan fails and crashes in a blaze of glory” and says former top counterterrorism official Richard Clarke “is an uninformed douche.” Strzok finds it “wildly offensive” that former Attorney General Eric Holder’s portrait is hung next to one of Elliot Richardson, who resigned in the Saturday Night Massacre. Later, when Holder speaks at the Democratic National Convention, he urges Page, “Oh God, Holder! Turn it off turn it off turn it off!!!!” Strzok tells Page, “i LOATHE Congress.” A month later, she says, “God i hate Congress. So utterly worthless.” Strzok replies, “Less than worthless. Contemptible.” They aren’t fans of Ted Cruz. The veteran political trickster Roger Stone “is horrible,” he says. At one point, the two fiercely debate Dreamers.
Among the few exceptions are Barack Obama and his family, and Joe Biden. During Michelle Obama’s DNC speech, Page writes, “God, she’s an incredibly impressive woman. The Obamas in general, really. While he has certainly made mistakes, I’m proud to have had him as my president.” She also says, “I really really like Joe Biden.” Strzok replies, “Was literally grabbing phone to say Joe’s doing great!” There is praise for the centrist conservative columnists David Brooks and Andrew Sullivan, too.
Strzok and Page especially detested Trump, who they call an “utter idiot” and complain about in many texts. “Trump is a disaster. l have no idea how destabilizing his Presidency would be,” Strzok says. But that doesn’t translate into much affection for Hillary Clinton. Strzok calls himself a “conservative Dem,” and grudgingly acknowledges in March 2016 that he’d vote for Clinton over Trump. (A colleague had him pegged as a John Kasich voter, he said.) But Strzok also says, “I’m worried about what happens if HRC is elected.” He complains that a fact-checker dismissed Bernie Sanders’s criticism of Clinton as too close to fossil-fuel lobbyists even though “everything Sanders said about Clinton is true … This is clear and utter bias by the media especially the NYTIMES, WAPO, and CNN who if you look at all of them have large donors for Clinton. The fact citing source they used is owed by a newspaper which publically endorsed Clinton.”