Carter Page, a former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser maintained on Sunday that he was “never an agent of a foreign power,” despite FBI documents alleging the opposite.
The FBI on Saturday released a redacted Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant application against Page, that was originally filed in October 2016. “The FBI believes that Page has been collaborating and conspiring with the Russian government,” the documents said.
In a Sunday interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on State of the Union, Page insisted that he has “never been an agent of a foreign power by any stretch of the imagination.” He called the accusations a “complete joke.”
The 412 pages of documents released by the FBI said, “the FBI believes that the Russian government’s efforts are being coordinated with Page and perhaps other individuals associated with” the Trump campaign. It cited Page’s relationships with Russian government officials and Russian intelligence as reason.
“This is so ridiculous, it goes beyond words,” Page told Tapper. According to the released documents, the FBI believed Page was recruited by the Russian government to “undermine and influence the outcome of the 2016 U.S. Presidential election in violation of U.S. criminal law.”
Tapper asked Page if any Russian government official, at any time in 2016, spoke with him about lifting U.S. sanctions on Russia, or about compromising material the country claimed to have on Hillary Clinton. “On compromising material, not one word,” Page said, adding that he learned about things through the “mainstream media.”
“When I was there in July 2016, a few people might have brought it up in passing, but again, it’s a major economic issue, so there may have been a loose conversation,” Page said of the sanctions.
President Donald Trump continues to deny any collaboration with the Russian government. On Sunday, he tweeted that the released documents “confirm with little doubt that the Department of ‘Justice’ and FBI misled the courts. Witch Hunt Rigged, a Scam!” He also accused the DoJ of illegally spying on the Trump campaign.
The Russia investigation is ongoing, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller has secured 32 individuals’ indictments or guilty pleas thus far.