Ex-CEO Claims He Was in Room When Political Espionage Against Trump Happened, Leaves Fox Panel Nearly Speechless


In an interview that can be described as jaw-dropping, baffling and downright unbelievable, former CEO Patrick Byrne told a panel on Fox Business Network’s “Bulls & Bears” that he played a role in a significant “political espionage” campaign carried out against Donald Trump, among other political candidates and officeholders.

In a meandering interview that doubled back and skipped forward at different points, Byrne claimed to have been recruited by a mystery group of what he thought were “very honorable federal agents” to assist in an investigation.

Claiming to have helped federal investigators during a murder investigation 17 years ago, Byrne did not seem to consider the alleged 2015 contact from federal investigators to be especially out of the ordinary.

He did, however, say the alleged orders he received through those contacts were “a little fishy.”

Then Byrne dropped the bomb.

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“Last summer, watching television, I figured out the name of who sent me the orders. And this has all now been confirmed to me. The name of the man who sent me the orders was a guy name Peter Strzok,” he said.

Fox’s David Asman responded with a stunned, “Oh my goodness.”

Byrne went on to claim that he had remained silent up until this point because, referring to Bill Barr replacing Jeff Sessions as attorney general, “I couldn’t come forward until there was rule of law in this country.”

“The bottom line,” Byrne continued, “is the — a big cover-up. There was political espionage conducted against Hillary Clinton — against Hillary Clinton, Mark Rubio, [Ted] Cruz and Donald Trump.”

At no point during the interview did Byrne provide evidence to support this or any of his other claims.

Do you think Bryne's claims are legitimate?

Reiterating, Byrne said, “I’m just identifying now as X, Y and Z. I’ve — they were named to me and I’ve identified them to the — to law enforcement. I believe there’s a massive federal investigation that is going to turn up that there was political espionage conducted, through a number of different venues, against Hillary Clinton and against Rubio, Cruz and Trump.”

Asked how his life might unfold after airing these claims, Bryne responded, “My life — I’ve — if you want to know what — well, I have literally been warned that Washington — I was warned about nine months ago, if you come forward to Washington, D.C., everybody in Washington, D.C., is going to be — you’re — spending the rest of your life trying to grind you into dust,” he said.

“And I’ll tell you something else that’ll come up. I was — I believe I was offered a billion-dollar bribe to keep quiet.”

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Byrne was then asked why he might have gotten involved in such a convoluted scenario when he had a great deal to lose.

“Well, I’m a citizen, too. I’m flag-waving hippie like Jerry Garcia. I’m a citizen,” he responded. “And I think that as a citizen we have duties, too. And if everybody helped out a little bit when they had a chance, life would be much easier.”

“I’ve helped out twice in my life, once when a friend of mine got murdered. I helped — a guy named Brian Williams, and if you Google his name and mine you’ll find the story. When Brian was murdered, I helped the feds bring that murderer to justice. And it was my honor to help them the — bring the murderer to justice.”

Byrne wasn’t done.

“And I helped them, back ’05 to 2010, take down Wall Street,” he said. “And both of — both catching my friend’s murderer and taking on Wall Street were consistent with my values. And it was honor to help the men in black then. And it was just — this third time, they came to me and I got some requests.”

“I didn’t know the who hell — who the hell it came from, and it was fishy. And 3 years later, I’m watching television, and I realized who it was,” he said.

“It was Peter Strzok and Andy McCabe. And that’s who these orders came from.”

Byrne left after revealing he engaged in a romantic relationship with accused Russian spy Maria Butina. According to the The New York Times, Byrne admitted the romance on the advice of Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett.

At time of publication, Buffett had not responded to a request for comment from The Western Journal.

At this time, The Western Journal cannot corroborate any of the seemingly outlandish claims Byrne has made. The fact that he made those claims, however, and the names he mentions in them make his story newsworthy.

If corroborating evidence surfaces, The Western Journal will follow up.

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Josh Manning is deputy managing editor for assignment at The Western Journal. He holds a masters in public policy from Harvard University and has a background in higher education.
Josh Manning grew up outside of Memphis, TN and developed a love of history, politics, and government studies thanks to a life-changing history and civics teacher named Mr. McBride.

He holds an MPP from Harvard University and a BA from Lyon College, a small but distinguished liberal arts college where later in his career he served as an interim vice president.

While in school he did everything possible to confront, discomfit, and drive ivy league liberals to their knees.

After a number of years working in academe, he moved to digital journalism and opinion. Since that point, he has held various leadership positions at The Western Journal.

He's married to a gorgeous blonde who played in the 1998 NCAA women's basketball championship game, and he has two teens who hate doing dishes more than poison. He makes life possible for two boxers -- "Hank" Rearden Manning and "Tucker" Carlson Manning -- and a pitbull named Nikki Haley "Gracie" Manning.
MPP from Harvard University, BA from Lyon College
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, tiny fragments of college French
Topics of Expertise
Writing, politics, Christianity, social media curation, higher education, firearms