These are the questions to ask about the Trump-Russia connection

Casey Dawson
November 9, 2017

Page wrote in a July 2016 email to Trump campaign aides that Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich "expressed strong support for Mr. Trump and a desire to work together toward devising better solutions in response to a vast range of current global problems", according to a transcript of more than six hours of testimony Page gave last week before a House of Representatives committee investigating Russian interference in the US election. "So yeah, he probably should come back, and answer the question yet again 'did you know anything about an effort by the Trump campaign to meet with Russia, not just collude with Russia, '" Graham told said on Fox News Sunday. A campaign staffer with contacts linked to the Kremlin is now cooperating with Mr. Mueller's probe into election interference. Last week, he pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about contacts with Russians.

Both men served on a campaign foreign policy advisory committee under the supervision of then-Sen. Sessions, who is now the United States of America attorney general and was an early supporter of Trump's campaign, to say hello and mentioned he was headed to Russian Federation.

He said he had told Jeff Sessions, now United States attorney general but at the time in 2016 the leader of the foreign policy team, that he was planning the Moscow trip to lecture at a university which invited him.

Page's eight-hour testimony, under oath, to members of the House Intelligence Committee on November 2 came the same week as the first charges were announced in the special counsel's investigation into ties between Trump's campaign and Russian officials.

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Another campaign adviser, Carter Page, told the House Intelligence Committee last week that he informed Sessions in July 2016 about his own planned trip to Moscow.

Page's Russia contacts paralleled those of Papadopoulos, who, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, wrote a number of emails to senior Trump campaign officials between March and September past year about his own Russian contacts and proposed Trump travel to Moscow. He also admitted notifying the fact of his meetings to his campaign supervisors.

In text messages to TPM on Monday, Page reiterated that he "covered this irrelevant point" in that September 2016 interview with the Post and that the renewed focus on the meeting was a "complete waste of time". At a judiciary hearing last month, Sessions testified that he had "no improper involvement" with Russian officials and that he was "not aware of anyone" who had communications with the Russians. He called the Russian Federation investigation a "witch hunt that was sparked by the dodgy dossier in the months prior to November 2016". "I might have said hello to a few people as they were walking by me at my graduation-the graduation speech that I gave in July, but no meetings".

It is Page's subsequent downplaying of that encounter that made it seem like a new revelation when reports emerged that Page divulged the encounter in his lengthy closed-door testimony before the House Intelligence Committee late last week.

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