Carter Page: I Never Called Myself a Trump Adviser

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At the center of the brouhaha supposedly connecting Donald Trump to Russian interests is a businessman named Carter Page, who we have been told was a foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign. Leaks from inside the intelligence community indicate that it was Page’s trip to Moscow last summer that inspired the FBI to seek a FISA warrant and conclude that Page was likely working as an agent for the Russian government.

With the heat coming down last December, the Trump transition team sent a cease and desist letter to Page, asking him to stop claiming to be a campaign insider. On December 22, Trump’s attorney, Don McGhan wrote to Page, saying, “You never met Mr. Trump, nor did you ever ‘advise’ Mr. Trump about anything. You are thus not an ‘adviser’ to Mr. Trump in any sense of the word.”

Fox News obtained the letter to Page as well as Page’s response, which was sent back to the transition team the next day. In his response, Page said that he never claimed to be one of Trump’s advisers. To the contrary, he said it was the Clinton campaign and the mainstream media that made his relationship to the Trump campaign out to be something it wasn’t.

“Thank you for your letter…and the opportunity to address the false impression that I may in some way be holding myself out as an ‘adviser’ to Mr. Trump,” Page wrote, according to Fox. “I believe this extremely false perception might be based on frequent and continued mischaracterizations in the mainstream media. The media narrative is completely outside of my personal control despite constant and intensive efforts by me.”

Page’s name first surfaced as a member of the Trump campaign team last spring when the candidate himself named him as one of his foreign policy advisers in a TV interview. According to sources within the campaign, however, Trump merely picked Page’s name from a list of foreign policy experts…perhaps for no better reason than the fact that he had a doctorate. In reality, however, all parties involved – Trump, his campaign team, and Page himself – say the two never met.

Is it possible that this interview formed the entire basis for the FBI’s investigation into Trump’s so-called “collusion” with the Russian government? If he’d chosen another name from that list, would we be talking about something else today? We’d hope that the FBI and the rest of the intelligence community would need something more substantial upon which to base their inquiries, but then again, they did appear to put a lot of stock in that ridiculous “dossier” that was bought and paid for by Trump’s political opponents, so anything’s possible.