Carter Page, an investment banker who served as a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump, sparred with MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes in an interview Thursday night, ducking questions about his reported conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in July without denying such talks took place.
“I’m not going to deny that I talked to him. Although I will say that I never met him anywhere outside of Cleveland,” Page said. “Let’s just say that much.”
USA Today reported on Thursday that Page and another early adviser on Trump’s campaign, J.D. Gordon, spoke to the Russian ambassador at an event hosted by the conservative Heritage Foundation in Cleveland during the RNC.
But Page insisted that he couldn’t speak about the encounter, because doing so would be disrespectful to the event’s organizers.
“I may have met him possibly, what might have been in Cleveland,” he said. “Again, I’m respectful to the organizers; I’m respectful to confidentiality rules.”
Hayes chided Page at numerous points in the interview, saying his indirect answers only made the situation appear more suspicious.
“There’s this pattern, which you appear to be part of, in which there’s this kind of bizarre disassembling about the basic facts of the matter,” he said. “Do you understand why that reads to people as fishy?”
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) March 3, 2017