Individual 1 Spent His Saturday Morning Ranting About the “Russia Hoax”

“Witch Hunt!”

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

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President Donald Trump is having quite the day on Twitter. After announcing the resignation of his embattled Interior secretary and blasting the “dishonest” media, the president took aim at the “Russia Hoax.”

Referring to a recent Department of Justice inspector general report into attempts to recover text messages sent by former FBI officials Lisa Page and Peter Strzok—both of whom worked on special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation—Trump wrote, “Wow, 19,000 Texts between Lisa Page and her lover, Peter S of the FBI, in charge of the Russia Hoax, were just reported as being wiped clean and gone.” He added. “Such a big story that will never be covered by the Fake News. Witch Hunt!”

In 2017, it was revealed that Page and Strzok had exchanged text messages critical of Trump during the 2016 campaign. Republicans have used the case to slam the FBI for what they claim is a bureau-wide bias against Trump.

But there’s no evidence supporting Trump’s implication that the messages were deliberately “wiped clean” in order to cover up supposed wrongdoing. In reality, the messages appear to have been lost due to a widespread technical problem within the FBI, according to the inspector general report released Thursday. The report noted that while many of Page and Strzok’s texts were lost, thousands of others were recovered.

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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