Strozok was dismissed from the investigation and later fired by the FBI after text messages showed him criticizing then-candidate Trump. The White House says the book is full of lies and is “not worth the paper it is printed on.”
Strzok joined “CBS This Morning” on Tuesday for his first live interview about his book. He defended his own controversies and refused to establish a “perennial trap” when he interviewed former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn in 2017. He also said that he has not been interviewed in the Russia investigation.
Read her chat with “CBS This Morning” co-host Tony Docoil below.
Tony Dokopil: To say that your book is highly anticipated is an understanding. It has a very big claim at the center and that is that the President of the United States has compromised, unable to keep the interest of the country above himself. What is the best evidence of your allegation?
Peter Strzok: Well, good morning. it’s great to be here. Look, I think the President has compromised. I recruited spies for over two decades and supervised terrorism investigations throughout the United States and around the world. There is no one who has done that kind of work that does not believe that the president is compromised, and when you ask that question, when you look at that fact, you are surprised that the agreement How deep it is and what it will or will not do. To protect your interest.
Dokoupil: Mr. Strozok, I want to interrupt you because it is a claim that everyone believes. But what evidence is there so that the householders can give their verdict?
Strzok: Absolutely. I think you need to look at the actions of the President in relation to Russia. When it comes after their complete refusal to respond to the Russians holding the bounty on our soldiers’ heads in Afghanistan, when you ask our commitment to the NATO alliance, we will come to mutual aid and rescue Or not our allies in Europe, when you see the toxicity of a Russian dissident and his failure to respond to an assassination attempt. When you look at his absolute silence in Russia riding on a truck in Syria and injuring many of our soldiers, you have to ask yourself why on earth is he doing these things, without saying these things Lets happen? It has no meaning for American security.
Dokoupil: I hear you saying that there is a feeling of being molested. When we talk about appearances, we have to also talk about appearances in your case. During your investigation of the Trump campaign in 2016, you sent text messages that I would like to remind my audience and you too because you don’t remember sending them, you called the president f-ing idiot, disaster. At one point in Southern Virginia, you said that you could “SMELL” Trump supporters. And, of course, the most famous you said, don’t worry he won’t be the president, “We’ll stop it.” I think the question is, are you trying to stop it?
Strzok: No, look, every agent has their own opinion. I also have my own personal opinion. However, every day, around the United States, public servants walk into their jobs and they leave their political opinions at the door. They do their work like I did my work, impartially, independently and in search of truth.
Dokoupil: But Mr. Strzok, if you are not giving the president the benefit of the doubt as to what the problems are regarding him, why should the public give you the benefit of the doubt when these are very problematic text messages.
Strzok: Because many people have seen those people. Two inspectors have carried out a general investigation. He has been repeatedly investigated by US lawyers from around the Justice Department. Congress has been scrutinized by both the House and Senate sides. All of them have concluded that inappropriate political views never played a role in anything I did or what the team did, and all of them were thoroughly investigated.
Dokoupil: I want to move on to something in the news right now, but I will point out that the Inspector General’s report cannot be ruled out – a sign of bias was the phrase. There was no documentary evidence of that bias, no clear plan, but there were indications.
Strzok: Correct, but if you notice, you also need to note that the Inspector General did not find any evidence of any kind, which had the role of improper political views.
Dokoupil: documentary evidence. I want to move forward on the Michael Flynn case because it is in the news right now. The Justice Department is trying to dismiss the charges against former National Security Advisor Flynn. You went back to the White House for an interview back in 2017. The Attorney General is saying that what you have done is a “mess”. Did you do that, sir?
Strzok: Not at all. This is a lewd allegation. The fact of the matter is that the United States National Security Advisor had a discussion with the Russian ambassador about mitigating the Russian response to those sanctions when the Trump administration was sworn in. What else do we get in this country, one president at a time. Flynn did, and what the FBI did was trying to understand that what he had done was absolutely legitimate and absolutely justified.
Dokoupil: Quickly, through two more dots. The first is what happened to the original interview notes from the Flynn interview you conducted in 2017?
Strzok: Like every interview I have done, they went in an … envelope, they are attached to the file, they have been provided to both the Justice Department, special counsel and Flynn’s lawyers.
Dokoupil: According to Flynn’s lawyers, no one saw him. I want to talk about you inquiry, inquiry in investigators. Attorney General Barr has launched it. He hand-picked John Durham to investigate. We are going to hear before the election, before November, so this is an important question. You are potentially at the center of it. Have you been interviewed
Strzok: I do not have
Dokoupil: Are you a target or a witness?
Strzok: Well, I certainly didn’t do anything wrong, so I’m not worried about what he might get. If he finds out the truth, I am not worried.
Dokoupil: Do you expect additional prosecutions?
Strzok: In relation to government employees working on the case? Not at all.
Dokoupil: Unfortunately we have to go. People will have their own opinion. We appreciate you answering the questions here. Thank you very much, Peter Strzok.