Two Other Trump Advisors Spoke To Russian Ambassador At GOP Convention

Grigoriy Sisoev/SPTNK

Details surfaced Thursday that two more members of President Donald Trump’s campaign were in contact with Russia’s ambassador to the United States during the Republican National Convention in 2016.

Former foreign policy adviser Carter Page and national security director J.D. Gordon spoke to Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, according to a USA Today report.

“I’d consider it an informal conversation just like my interactions with dozens of other ambassadors and senior diplomats in Cleveland,” Gordon told USA Today.

The White House did not immediately respond to TPM’s request for comment.

Page declined to say what he discussed with Kislyak, citing “confidentiality rules,” but he said they had “no substantive discussions.”

Deputy National Security Adviser K.T. McFarland also attended the Global Partners in Diplomacy program where Page and Gordon spoke with Kislyak, per USA Today’s report.

Two unnamed Republican delegates told the Daily Beast in August 2016 that Gordon was responsible for a dramatic alteration in the party’s official platform softening its position on Ukraine.

Gordon disputed that claim to Business Insider, saying that even after alterations, the platform “still was much tougher on Russia” than that of the Democratic Party.

Page stepped down from Trump’s campaign in September 2016 amid allegations that he had engaged in private communications with top Russian officials.

He called the claims “total garbage” but said he took a leave of absence because the accusations were causing a “distraction.”

The report was the latest in a series of details continuing to surface about contacts between members of Trump’s campaign and Russian officials.

Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn resigned in February after reports revealed that he spoke about sanctions in a call with Kislyak before Trump’s inauguration. This contradicted members of Trump’s administration, including Vice President Mike Pence, who previously denied that Flynn and the ambassador discussed sanctions.

And on Thursday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from an investigation into ties between Trump’s campaign and Russia, amid revelations that Sessions met twice with Kislyak before the election.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Esme Cribb is a newswriter for TPM in New York City. She can be found on Twitter @emquiry and reached by email at esme@talkingpointsmemo.com.

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