Carter Page, a foreign policy campaign adviser for President Donald Trump, admitted on MSNBC Monday evening that he was “probably” on a few email exchanges that “may have” been about Russia with another campaign adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russia earlier this month.
MSNBC host Chris Hayes pressed Page twice throughout the 15 minute interview about whether he was on email chains with former Trump adviser George Papadopoulos that discussed Russia. Page didn’t hesitate to say he probably was.
“Look, there is a lot of email all over the place when you’re in a campaign,” he said.
“Yes or no, were you on email chains with Papadopoulos?” Hayes asked.
“Probably a few, yeah,” Page said. When asked whether he was on chains that discussed Russia, he said “it may have come up from time to time, again there was nothing major.”
Asked again later on in the interview, Page said that he was “perhaps, yeah” on email threads with Papadopoulos and that Russia “may have come up.”
Court documents unsealed Monday revealed Papadopoulos, who was also a foreign policy adviser for Trump’s campaign, lied to federal agents about his contacts with a professor whom he knew had substantial links to the Russian government. A campaign supervisor encouraged Papadopoulos to travel to Russia to meet with officials “if it is feasible,” according to the unsealed documents.
Page said it was not him who encouraged Papadopoulous to travel to Russia nor was he the “low level” campaign member mentioned in court documents who went to Russia “so as not to send any signal.”
“I definitely was not. I’m sure on that one that I wasn’t. It was very clear. And if you listen to the audio of all or the transcripts of everything I said, I was always there just as a private citizen. And I’ve spoken at universities in Moscow, in Russia, in Asia, in Europe many times. So I was totally separate from the campaign. … They said if you want to go on your own, we’re fine with that,” he said, saying the campaign knew he was going to Russia.
Page came under scrutiny in the past for a trip he took to Moscow during the campaign, which he has consistently claimed was a personal trip that had nothing to do with Trump or the election.
Page recently spent five hours — without a lawyer, he said Monday — being interviewed by congressional investigators who are probing Russian interference in the 2016 election and whether the Trump campaign colluded with the foreign power to win.
At the end of the interview, Hayes pressed Page on whether he has a lawyer — Page said he has some “advisers” — and said he hopes Page is “innocent of everything” because he is “doing a lot of talking.”
“You’re either admirably bold or reckless,” Hayes said.
Watch the full interview:
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