President Donald Trump along with conservative media has gone from alleging President Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower to now saying an FBI spy was dispatched by the former president to infiltrate the campaign. But Carter Page won’t back that up.
Of all people who has been intricately involved with the legalities surrounding the Russia investigation, it’s Carter Page. But when CNN’s Anderson Cooper asked Page to confirm Trump’s assessment, Page could not.
“I never found anything unusual whatsoever,” Page told Cooper. “You know, there’s a lot of allegations out there right now.”
The first time Page met the man was a week following his trip to Russia. Page said that the two men kept in contact for about a year following the conference they both attended and that they spoke about the campaign and foreign policy.
“You know he is someone who is, you know, long-term — someone who had been part of the establishment in Republican politics,” Page said of the academic who had worked as an assistant for three chiefs of staff, Alexander Haig, Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney. “So, typically, you know, around the convention time, and halfway through a presidential year, there’s — you keep bringing on more people in terms of potential supporters from the party, et cetera. It just seemed like something like that.”
Cooper noted that Trump has repeatedly called the man a spy and alleged that the man infiltrated the campaign. He asked Page if that was his take and Page said no.
“I see no connection with it. You know, he always said, we’re looking out for the forgotten man,” Page said. “I was — I’ve always been looking to just kind of get justice in terms of what’s been going on. And to the extent that we kind of get some real information out there, as to some of the abuses, and increasingly, there’s been a lot of evidence that’s come out, particularly in early February when the House Intelligence — both the Democrats and the Republicans, their memos continue to show that there was a lot of wrongdoing really to this –”
Cooper asked what he meant by “wrongdoing” and Page clarified that it was an abuse of process in the FISA court that came after him.
The host then asked if Page believed the man was a spy trying to infiltrate the campaign. Page changed the subject about a “drip, drip, drip” of things coming out.
Cooper asked again, this time focusing on his own personal experience and understanding, not the president’s.
“I don’t like to make accusations without hard facts,” Page said. Cooper asked again. “I don’t like jumping to conclusions.”
Cooper said it was “fair enough,” as the same wisdom is not one the president has not heeded.
Watch the full clip below:
’Let ‘em go’: Ex-police commissioner lays into Buffalo cops who quit Emergency Response Team
On CNN Friday, former Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey slammed the 57 Buffalo police officers who resigned from the city's Emergency Response Team in solidarity with a pair of officers investigated for shoving an elderly man to the ground and then lying about it.
"If they want to resign, they should resign from the department," said Ramsey. "They don't have a vote in what unit they're in or the running of that department. They would not be allowed to step down from those positions. If they want to resign from the police department, let 'em go, and I would not bring them back, it just means you have some slots you have to fill. That kind of stuff is ridiculous and can't be tolerated."
Trump accused by ex-Defense Secretary of putting US on ‘the trail toward a dictatorship’
During an appearance on CNN on Friday morning, former Defense Secretary William Cohen - who also served in the U.S. Senate as a Republican -- denounced Donald Trump in no uncertain terms, saying his use of military personnel against anti-police brutality protesters is a sign he has set the country on the path to a dictatorship.
To emphasize his point, he later called Trump the "dictator-in-chief."
Speaking with host Jim Sciutto, Cohen didn't mince words after the CNN host noted that the president and his former attorney called the protesters "terrorists."
"What does it mean for you to hear a sitting president dismissing a whole range of protesters, who in fact were largely peaceful around the White House, dismissing a whole range of them as terrorists? What does that mean to you?" the CNN host asked.
Richmond mayor schools white lawmaker complaining removal of Confederate statue strips her of her history
Appearing on CNN's "New Day" on Friday morning, the mayor of Richmond, Virginia set a white state lawmaker straight over her comments that the imminent removal of a statue commemorating Confederate General Robert E. Lee was erasing her history.
Speaking with host John Berman, Mayor Levar Stoney expressed pleasure at the upcoming removal of the massive statue, saying it was a long overdue -- before the interview turned to comments made by State Senator Amanda Chase (R) made in a Facebook post.
Noting that the white lawmaker complained, "Let's be honest here, there is an overt effort here to erase all-white history," Stoney had a few words for the lawmaker.