Seriously, Carter Page must be absolutely attention-starved, post-election.
For starters, he said he was going to plead his Fifth Amendment rights in the ongoing probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election, but then, he just kept talking!
Maybe “talking” isn’t the proper term.
“Singing like a bird” seems fitting.
Specifically, Page is dishing on a July 2016 trip to Moscow, that was originally billed as a “personal” trip. Now, however, it’s a trip he sought permission for, then later briefed top Trump campaign officials on.
NBC News reported:
Page, whose sworn testimony was released Monday night, told the House Intelligence Committee last week that he sought permission to make the trip from campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, and also notified Hope Hicks, who is now the White House communications director.
Page also acknowledged that he had been aware that another volunteer campaign adviser, George Papadopoulos, had been meeting with a professor with links to the Kremlin, according to the committee’s ranking Democrat, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif.
Papadopoulos has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI and is cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller.
The “coffee boy.”
Both men were under the supervision of then-Senator Jeff Sessions. Page says he informed Sessions of his planned trip to Moscow, and that Sessions “advised nothing.”
“Page — after being presented with an email he sent to his campaign supervisors, and which he did not disclose to the committee prior to the interview and despite a subpoena from the Committee — detailed his meetings with Russian government officials and others, and said that they provided him with insights and outreach that he was interested in sharing with the campaign,” Schiff said in a statement.
In terse and sometimes heated exchanges with members of the committee, Page admitted that he had met with Russian officials and discussed the U.S. presidential election “in general terms.” He also met with the head of investor relations at Rosneft, a top Russian oil company. Page said the sanctions the U.S. has imposed on Russia may have come up in their discussion but “not directly.”
Yeah, that’s quite a bit more than Page’s initial claim that he was there talking to random Russians in the streets, basically.
He also eventually admitted that there “may have been” a meeting with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich. I would think that would be something he’d be a bit more specific about.
In a July 8 email to one campaign official, J.D. Gordon, Page discussed the “incredible insight” he was getting from meetings with Russian legislators and members of the presidential administration.
Why is the volunteer from a U.S. presidential election taking off in the middle of a campaign to get “insight” from foreign government officials? Just let that one hang out there, awhile.
A month ago, Page scoffed at the ongoing Russia probe, parroting the Trump line that it was a “witch hunt,” based on the “dodgy dossier” put together by Fusion GPS.
That was a month ago, but his own testimony, at least in part, confirms some of the claims included in the dossier.
It wasn’t just Russian government officials Page met with.
In his testimony, Page acknowledged meeting with numerous senior individuals from Russian energy companies Rosneft and Gazprom in Moscow in July and December, according to an NBC News review of the transcript.
So Page was on a mission, for sure.
It just seems Trump surrounded himself with liars, thieves, and con artists during the campaign. That all might be how business is done in New York, but it’s exactly what you don’t want following you around in politics.