Trump Tried To Weaponize The IRS Against Enemies

( — Former Trump White House Chief of Staff John Kelly said in a sworn statement made public last week that in 2018, then-President Trump had discussed with him the possibility of having the IRS or other agencies investigate two FBI officials that were involved in the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, the New York Times reported.

Kelly’s statement was disclosed last Thursday in connection to lawsuits brought by former Russia investigation lead agent Peter Strzok and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page.

Strzok and Page are suing the Justice Department for violating their privacy when Trump Justice Department officials publicly released their private text messages.

In his statement, Kelly said Trump’s comment was included in notes Kelly had taken during a meeting in February 2018. The former chief of staff turned over copies of his notes to attorneys representing one of the plaintiffs in the case and made the sworn statement in a court filing.

According to Kelly’s statement, the former president asked if the IRS or “other federal agencies” should investigate Strzok or Page. Kelly conceded that he could not say if Trump was “ordering such an investigation,” but “it appeared” that Trump “wanted to see Mr. Strzok and Ms. Page investigated.”

Kelly’s disclosure, made under penalty of perjury, reveals Trump’s interest in using the federal government to target his supposed enemies, according to the New York Times.

Last year, the New York Times reported that former FBI Director James Comey and former Deputy Director Andrew McCabe were subjected to invasive IRS audits after leaving the FBI.

However, it is unclear if the IRS investigated either Strzok or Page.

Kelly’s assertion that Trump asked about investigating Strzok and Page was first revealed late last year.

In November 2022, Kelly told the New York Times that then-President Trump had told him he wanted the IRS to investigate his political enemies, including James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, and Lisa Page.

In the sworn statement released last week, Kelly said Trump also discussed revoking Strzok and Page’s security clearances, but Kelly took no action.

Kelly also revealed that Trump did not approve of note-taking during meetings for fear that those notes “might later be used against him.”

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