The investigation into Russia's efforts to influence the 2016 presidential election began after U.S. intelligence became suspicious Trump adviser Carter Page's close ties to Russian intelligence.
Democratic commentator Chris Hahn was talking to Fox News Channel host Tucker Carlson about the probe on Friday night when Page's name came up.
Carlson introduced Page to tell his version of the story and ran into a buzzsaw when Hahn refused to back down as the former Trump adviser made excuses for passing documents to a Russian spy.
"This is complete spin," Page said. "I was teaching a course at New York University called on Energy in the World, in spring semester 2013, and I had a coffee with a diplomat from the Russian consulate."
"Who was a spy," Hahn said. "He was a spy—you gave him documents that he requested from you. Which is what the [Main Intelligence Directorate] does, the [Main Intelligence Directorate] when it recruits a useful idiot."
Carlson asked Hahn if he would expect to be punished for passing documents that were public information to a spy.
"I tend not to hang out with Russia spies because I'm trying to get get a gas deal with their nationally owned gas syndicate," Hahn said.
Carlson took Page's side and said he was "embarrassed" by the United States' efforts to stop Russian spies from interfering in elections.
"I'm embarrassed to live here right now," Carlson said. "This is a shameful moment in our country's history, that we would do this to one of our citizens. It's disgusting."