Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) launched into an invective against former Trump aide Carter Page and the testimony he gave to the House Intelligence Committee in order to defuse the central purpose of the investigations into alleged Russian collusion.
Here’s the video of Gowdy’s reaction on Fox News:
Here’s what he said
“What did you think about their assertion that there was plenty of other reasons to surveil Carter Page other than the dossier?” Fox News anchor Martha MacCallum asked.
“Well, my first reaction to that is if you had a bunch of other reasons to get a FISA application on Carter Page, then why did you need the dossier and a Yahoo News article?” Gowdy responded.
“If you have enough information without using the dossier, and a newspaper article, then why did you use it?” he continued. “So, I’ve never taken the position that they didn’t have a reason for being interested in Carter Page. I’ve never taken that position, but if you have enough, why are you relying on the National Enquirer article, and no offense, but media reporting, to get a warrant?”
“So when you go to,” MacCallum followed up, “you know, they had every reason to want to do that, right, you go through their document and you look at their meetings, the FBI surveillance of Carter Page starting back in 2013, discussions that he had with individuals at one point, members of the Russian intelligence arm call him an ‘idiot,’ they say he’s practicing his Russian on them, so obviously there’s a lot of back and forth going on there.”
“My question is if there was so much concern over Carter Page,” she asked, “it doesn’t seem like the investigation is particularly interested in him anymore, and hasn’t been for some time?”
“You put your finger on something,” Gowdy responded. “The Russians didn’t take him seriously. I don’t think the FBI took him seriously. I spend a long time interviewing him. If ever a witness needed to avail himself of his Sixth Amendment right to a lawyer, it was Carter Page.”
“That was one of the most painful interviews I have ever been part of,” he continued. “It was actually sad. I mean Democrats if they were to be honest, [about] the House Intel interview of Carter Page, they would tell you it was sad.”
“He doesn’t know when to stop talking,” he explained, “and nobody takes him seriously. So, he’s not Jason Bourne, he’s not James Bond, if the FBI wanted to investigate him, fine, go do it, but why are you relying on opposition research by the DNC and not telling the court where you got it?”
Why is Carter Page such a big deal?
Carter Page appears to be at the center of the investigations into alleged Russian collusion with the Trump campaign as he was a campaign official and had enough suspicious ties to merit a FISA warrant for surveillance.
Allies of the president, however, maintain that the warrant was assigned under dishonest information, since the application relied on the “Trump dossier,” parts of which have been refuted.