In her first public statements in nearly two years, Page told The Daily Beast in a story published Sunday about her time in the bureau during the 2016 campaign and the early years of the Trump administration, and elaborated on the personal toll of the president’s persistent attacks.
The latest broadside comes after Page gave an interview in which she accused the president of trying to “further destroy my life.”
President Donald Trump on Monday lashed out at Lisa Page after the former FBI attorney insisted in a new interview that she did not break the law during her work on the bureau’s high-profile probe into Hillary Clinton’s emails.
“When Lisa Page, the lover of Peter Strzok, talks about being ‘crushed’, and how innocent she is, ask her to read Peter’s ‘Insurance Policy’ text, to her, just in case Hillary loses,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Also, why were the lovers text messages scrubbed after he left Mueller. Where are they Lisa?”
“It’s like being punched in the gut. My heart drops to my stomach when I realize he has tweeted about me again. The president of the United States is calling me names to the entire world. He’s demeaning me and my career. It’s sickening,” Page said.
“But it’s also very intimidating because he’s still the president of the United States,” she continued. “And when the president accuses you of treason by name, despite the fact that I know there’s no fathomable way that I have committed any crime at all, let alone treason, he’s still somebody in a position to actually do something about that. To try to further destroy my life. It never goes away or stops, even when he’s not publicly attacking me.”
Page has been the subject of criticism from various White House allies, Republican lawmakers and conservative commentators since January 2018 for her extra-marital relationship with former FBI agent Peter Strzok and the politically charged text messages they exchanged during the Clinton probe. Page left the bureau in May 2018.
Strzok was also a key player in the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and potential coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. Former special counsel Rober Mueller removed Strzok from his team of top investigators in July 2017 after Strzok’s texts with Page, which were critical of the president, came to light.
In one of those messages, Strzok equated the Russia probe to an “insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40,” and in another exchange, he appeared to vow to block Trump from winning the White House race.
Trump is “not ever going to become president, right? Right?!” Page asked via text in August 2016, prompting Strzok to reply: “No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it.” Both Page and Strzok have sought to justify their texts during testimony before congressional lawmakers.
In his June 2018 report on the bureau’s handling of the Clinton investigation, Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz reprimanded former FBI Director James Comey and found that five FBI employees assigned to the case exchanged texts or instant messages that were hostile to Trump or supported Clinton. But Horowitz ultimately concluded there was no indication that political bias affected decisions made over the course of the probe.