The Justice Department Owes Us Answers About Those Texts They Released

Richard Ellis via ZUMA

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We all know that FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page don’t think much of Donald Trump. This is because the Justice Department, for reasons they still haven’t explained, decided to release a whole bunch of private texts they sent to each other during the 2016 campaign season. Republicans have been making endless hay of this to argue that it contaminates the entire Mueller investigation.

But was it only Trump the pair disdained? Not at all. The Wall Street Journal’s Del Quentin Wilber has done us all the favor of reading through the texts and highlighting the ones that refer to politicians. It turns out that Strzok and Page, like many of us, pretty much hate them all. Here they are in alphabetical order:

Congress: “i LOATHE congress.”
John Kasich: “He’s the only sensible man up there.”
Mitch McConnell: “always reminds me of a turtle.”
Martin O’Malley: “is a freakshow.”
The Republican convention: “Duck Dynasty now Scott Baio? Ridiculous.” “Charles in Charge?! That’s the best they can do?! Lmfao.”
Bernie Sanders: “Made me want to key the car.” “He’s an idiot like Trump.”
Jeff Sessions: “My god.” “Which is the f-ed uppedness of it.”
Roger Stone: “is horrible.”
Donald Trump: “OMG he’s an idiot.” “Trump is a fucking idiot.”

In other words, they’d watch the debates and dump on everyone, a scene repeated in millions of households all over the country. The only difference is that most of us get to keep our cynical remarks to ourselves.

I’m sure glad I don’t work for someone who can decide to release all my texts to the public just for the hell of it. The Justice Department really owes us all an explanation of who decided to release these texts and why it was done in this case.

UPDATE: It was someone in the Justice Department who released the text messages, not the FBI. I’ve corrected the text.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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