Carter Page, a former foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, informed the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday that he will not be cooperating with any requests to appear before the panel for its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and would plead the Fifth, according to a source familiar with the matter.
A former naval-officer-turned-energy consultant, Page came under fire last year after reports emerged that he had met with high-level associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow in 2016. While Page denied those meetings occurred, the Trump campaign distanced itself from the adviser not long after, with former officials saying that Page and Trump had never met.
Page also attracted attention earlier this year after it was revealed that he once came under scrutiny by the FBI for his contact with a Russian intelligence operative in New York City in 2013. Page was never charged with a crime, and the association happened years before he came into Trump’s orbit.
The Intelligence Committee has sought documents and testimony from Trump associates — including Page — as it seeks to piece together Russian efforts to manipulate and interfere with the 2016 presidential race. It has held high-profile closed-door meetings with several current White House and Trump-related officials, including Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner and Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr. But the panel has also signaled an interest in interviewing former campaign associates such as Page, to determine how, if at all, the Russians sought to infiltrate Trump’s circle in the throes of the presidential race.
It’s not clear if the committee has yet sent a formal request to Page asking him to testify.