House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) released a memo last week that was suppose to prove that former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page had his civil liberties violated by partisan FBI agents who used the "pee tape" dossier to obtain a warrant to conduct surveillance of him.
As we pointed out last week, the Nunes memo is full of gaping holes including the fact that the FBI began following Carter Page in 2013 several years before the dossier was even a twinkle in someone's eye.
Time published more evidence yesterday afternoon that suggests the FBI had plenty of reasons to consider Page a person of interest long before Trump even announced his candidacy. Page used his status as an adviser to the Kremlin during an argument with an editor for an academic journal he wished to publish in.
The letter, dated Aug. 25, 2013, was sent by Page to an academic press during a dispute over edits to an unpublished manuscript he had submitted for publication, according to an editor who worked with Page.
“Over the past half year, I have had the privilege to serve as an informal advisor to the staff of the Kremlin in preparation for their Presidency of the G-20 Summit next month, where energy issues will be a prominent point on the agenda,” the letter reads.
It's not clear if this casual boast impressed the editors, but it may have implicated him for lying to the FBI.
Page told the FBI at their June 2013 meeting that the officers might better spend their time investigating the Boston Marathon bombing, which had occurred the previous April, according to a letter Page sent to Democrats on Nunes’ committee last May. Page says that thereafter the FBI began a retaliatory campaign against him. According to published reports, the FBI obtained a first FISA warrant to eavesdrop on Page’s electronic communications during 2013. And they have been paying attention to him, on and off, ever since.
Two months after his meeting with the FBI, Page sent the letter claiming to be a Kremlin adviser.
It seems reasonable to think Page have have exaggerated or downplayed his association with the Russians from time to time, but it also seems abundantly clear that this man is a useful idiot.
This is the man Trump and the GOP have hung their entire argument against the FBI on.