Page has raised eyebrows in Washington for his repeated TV appearances discussing his role in the campaign, despite his decision to forgo the advice of attorneys.
Though Carter Page has largely been viewed as a marginal figure in the Trump campaign, his role has taken on renewed significance after it was revealed Monday that fellow campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. | Mark Wilson/Getty Images
Former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page invoked his Fifth Amendment rights Thursday when asked by House Intelligence Committee members why he hadn’t turned over documents for their probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, lawmakers said.
“I’m helping to the greatest extent I can,” Page told reporters after exiting his interview, which was held in a secure Capitol hearing room. The committee is slated to release a transcript of his testimony in three days at Page’s request.
Page, who appeared without a lawyer, was in the hearing room for nearly seven hours, but he declined to offer details to reporters about the direction of lawmakers’ questions.
Lawmakers said after the session that Page did not hand over documents they subpoenaed, though it was not clear what material they requested. It was not immediately apparent what steps they would take to obtain the documents. The Senate intelligence panel has also issued him a subpoena.
Emerging from the hearing room, some committee members indicated that despite his lengthy testimony, only portions of it seemed to have value.
“No atomic bombs” was the way Rep. Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) described it.
In his brief comments to reporters, Page largely skirted the details of his back-and-forth with committee members but focused on his anger that he was included in the disputed dossier that purports to catalog President Donald Trump’s ties to prominent figures in Russia. The dossier, which was compiled by former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele and which Trump says is fake, described Page as an emissary for the campaign to the Kremlin.
“Now that the truth is getting out there and the domestic propaganda which related to this has been resolved, the truth is now in the process of becoming known, and brighter days are ahead,” Page said.
Page has raised eyebrows in Washington for his repeated TV appearances discussing his role in the campaign, despite his decision to forgo the advice of attorneys. He emerged from the lengthy hearing with an upbeat assessment of how it went.
“It was great to have this discussion and have the opportunity to testify,” he said.
Though Page has largely been viewed as a marginal figure in the Trump campaign, his role has taken on renewed significance after it was revealed Monday that fellow campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russian officials. Page and Papadopoulos were part of a small team of foreign policy advisers cobbled together in the spring of 2016 just as Trump was tightening his grip on the GOP presidential nomination.
Papadopoulos, in his plea agreement, described making repeated attempts to connect Trump campaign officials with influential Russians and suggested he was told that the Russians possessed “dirt” on Trump rival Hillary Clinton as early as April 2016.
Asked about his relationship with Papadopoulos, Page said, “I had nothing to do with any of that.”