The hearing brought a defiant Strzok face-to-face with Republican lawmakers who for months have held up his texts as the embodiment of anti-Trump bias within the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Republican members of the House judiciary and oversight committees grilled Strzok as they argued that text messages he exchanged with FBI lawyer Lisa Page colored the outcome of the Clinton investigation and undercut the ongoing Russian Federation probe.
At the center of suspicion surrounding him are a series of text messages he exchanged with his lover, former Federal Bureau of Investigation attorney Lisa Page.
"At no time in any of these texts did those personal beliefs enter into the realm of any action I took", Strzok testified.
"Sir, that's an expression of speech".
"I hesitate in part because of my gut sense and concern there's no big there there", Strzok said in the text.
He told members of the committees that he separated his political opinions from his investigations into Clinton and the Trump campaign.
Peter Strzok on Thursday testified publicly for the first time since being removed from special counsel Robert Mueller's team following the discovery of texts past year that were traded with an Federal Bureau of Investigation lawyer in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election. Virginia GOP Rep. Bob Goodlatte, the House Judiciary Committee chairman, said the rule only applies to members of Congress and the President.
Page and Strzok were catapulted to national attention in 2017 when their text messages became public. "It was the existence of your bias that got you kicked off", Gowdy said.
Strzok replied, "No, Mr. Gowdy, it wasn't". I do not have bias.
Strzok said "based on that awful, disgusting behavior", he assumed Trump would not win the election.
"Well, hang on a second, Agent Strzok!" Perception - you're saying it was the perception! In an effort to defeat Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, many social conservatives have been accused of choosing party over values, and brushing what many have long considered disqualifying character issues under the rug for the sake of power and influence.
Strzok also said he was one of the few people during the 2016 USA election who knew the details of Russian election interference and its possible connections with people in the Trump orbit, and that information could have derailed Trump's election chances.
During the daylong meeting, Strzok sparred with Republicans, who lashed out at him in often sharply personal exchanges.
"And potential criminal liability - do you understand that?"
During the marathon hearing, Democrats staunchly defended Strzok.
"He's a liar. I mean he is a good liar", Kallstrom said of Strzok during an interview on "The Evening Edit" on Thursday.
Republicans, on the other hand, peppered Strzok with questions and expressed outrage that's been building for months.
"The suggestion that I and some dark chamber somewhere in the Federal Bureau of Investigation would somehow cast aside all of these procedures, all of these safeguards and somehow be able to do this, is astounding to me", said Strzok.
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), referring to Strzok's affair with Page and his denial of any bias, told the Federal Bureau of Investigation agent, "I can't help but wonder, when I see you looking there with a little smirk, how many times did you look so innocent into your wife's eyes". "I certainly hope there aren't too many Peter Strzoks there because somebody who can tell us under oath that this doesn't indicate at least some bias". He added that it was a "situation where we can actually learn what's going on and the witness can actually answer the question".