Former Trump aide calls Russia probe 'comically fake'

The request comes in a two-page letter from senators that Carter Page shared with The Associated Press.

Former Trump adviser Carter Page has declined to provide records of his communications with Russians to the Senate intelligence committee, saying that anything of note has already been recorded by former President Barack Obama's administration. But the government's application for the FISA warrant targeting Page, The Post reported, has been renewed a couple of times, and "included a lengthy declaration that laid out investigators' basis for believing that Page was an agent of the Russian government and knowingly engaged in clandestine intelligence activities on behalf of Moscow". And the panel, sources said, is prepared to subpoena them for the records if necessary.

CBS News has learned that members of Congress and US law enforcement officials are increasingly concerned that Russian Federation is already trying or will try to discredit the FBI counterintelligence investigation.

In a joint statement from the committee's chairman, Sen. Richard Burr and Mark Warner deriding their "comically fake inquiry", which he also referred to in the letter as "pathetic Russian Federation storyline fabrications" and a "fanciful witch hunt".

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"The committee will continue to pursue its inquiry into issues surrounding Russia's involvement in the 2016 Presidential election", the senators said.

The Washington Post originally reported that the FBI obtained a FISA warrant to put Page under surveillance last summer as part of its investigation into possible links between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

"Mr. Page has indicated in correspondence to the Committee that he looks forward to working with us on this matter, and that our cooperation will help resolve what he claims are false allegations. For that to happen, Mr. Page must supply the requested documents to the committee".

Page has also denied that he had discussed the US lifting economic sanctions against Russian Federation during a speaking trip to Moscow a year ago.

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Officials were so concerned that Flynn did not fully understand the motives of the Russian ambassador that the head of Trump's national security council transition team asked Obama administration officials for a classified Central Intelligence Agency profile of Kislyak, officials said.

The White House has distanced itself from Page since it became clear he was a key target for investigators.

Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, Republican strategist Roger Stone and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort are also among those the Senate intelligence committee has asked for information and documents related to its investigation.

Stone, as previously reported by the New York Times, "said in a speech that he had "communicated with" Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder - whom he has defended for years - and that he had a large trove of material on the Clintons that he would publish shortly before the election".

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Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey said the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe is exploring the nature of any links between individuals associated with Mr Trump's campaign and the Russian government, and whether there was any co-ordination between Russia's efforts and that campaign.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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