Former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page appeared on MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes Monday night to discuss the charges against his former colleagues as special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the U.S. election ramps up.
And, given that Page himself is under investigation for his contact with Russian officials, it was a strange move on his part, which led to a rather bizarre interview whereby Page seemed to cough up several freebies to Mueller, who was no doubt watching at home.
Hayes began by congratulating Page for not being indicted on a day that three other former campaign officials had either been charged or had their case unsealed. Page, seemingly determined to dig himself deeper into a hole, apparently took that as a license to babble.
“Congratulations for not being indicted” — @chrislhayes leads off his interview with Carter Page
— Sam Stein (@samstein) October 31, 2017
When asked if Page had ever been on email chains with George Papadopoulos, the former foreign policy adviser who pleaded guilty to lying to federal agents about his Russian contacts, Page equivocated at first.
“There’s a lot of emails all over the place when you’re in a campaign,” He said before admitting, he was on “probably a few” email chains with Papadopoulos.
— All In w/Chris Hayes (@allinwithchris) October 31, 2017
When Hayes pressed him on whether the email chains were about Russia, Page said, “it may have come up from time-to-time…there’s nothing, nothing major.”
Hayes responded, “it was enough for (Papadopoulos) to lie to federal investigators and then plead guilty to.”
The White House has tried to diminish the campaign roles of both Page and Papadopoulos as Mueller’s investigation closed in, but Page admitted he and Papadopoulos “met briefly a couple times early in the campaign.”
Keep in mind, this man has been under investigation by multiple intelligence agencies for acting as a foreign agent and clandestinely gathering intelligence on Moscow’s behalf, and said he was going to “Plead the Fifth” to keep from having to turn over documents requested by the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Yet, during the interview with Hayes, Page said he did not an attorney when he was interviewed by the Senate Intelligence Committee for five hours.
Carter Page tells @chrislhayes he didn’t bring an attorney when he was interviewed for five hours by the Senate intel committee.
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) October 31, 2017
Page said he did not think he was the “low level” campaign staffer who was sent to Russia and referred to in Papadopoulos’ court documents — Page went on a trip to Russia for his own business — but said he had been busy working on “other things” today and hadn’t quite read the fine print.
And when asked if he had briefed the Trump campaign when got back from his independent trip to Russia, Page said, “I may have mentioned just a few, sort of, you know, things I heard, but nothing serious at all.”
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) October 31, 2017
At one point, Page even appears to brag that he’s “been cooperating since March” with the FBI — compared to Papadopoulos, who has apparently been cooperating since at least July — and that he “wants to get the truth out there.”
“Papadopoulos has been cooperating since July. I’ve been cooperating since March,” Carter Page tells @ChrisHayesTV
— Christina Wilkie (@christinawilkie) October 31, 2017
And, as one user noted, he clearly needed a glass of water.
can someone get carter page a glass of water pic.twitter.com/qu3VBzkArO
— Ashley Feinberg (@ashleyfeinberg) October 31, 2017
Perplexed by the whole affair, Hayes quickly ends the interview by telling Page he is either “either admirably bold or reckless” for choosing to do media interviews, given his position.
At the end of Carter Page interview, @chrislhayes tells him "it's either admirably bold or reckless" to be doing media interviews.
— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) October 31, 2017