In the midst of a week which saw fireworks as big as Donald Trump firing the FBI Director who was investigating his Russia scandal, it seemed like a good opportunity for the various other figures in the scandal to make themselves conveniently forgotten. But don’t tell that to Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, who instead booked himself onto the Chris Hayes show tonight on MSNBC. Page sounded like more of an idiot than ever – but is there more to it?
Even as Hayes tried to conduct a thoughtful interview this evening, Carter Page used his time to insist he’s as innocent as can be when it comes to the Russia scandal. Nevermind that the last time Page was booked on this show, Hayes managed to get him to admit that he’d met with the Russian Ambassador during the Republican National Convention.
And yet here was Carter Page tonight, insisting that he’s done nothing wrong, and sharing strange irrelevant anecdotes about the small talk he made with Paul Manafort when he met him. If Page is indeed innocent, if he really was some small time adviser who had nothing to do with any election collusion, he’d be wise to lay low and let the big dogs like Trump and the FBI fight it out. If Page is guilty, then he’d be even more wise to keep his mouth shut, because anything he’s saying in these interviews could end up giving away something incriminating. But what if there’s a third explanation?
I’m not referring to Carter Page being an idiot; we’ve already seen that he either is an idiot, or he’s skilled at pretending to be one. Instead I’m referring to the one and only scenario in which a subject of an ongoing investigation can talk as freely as he wants without any fear of incriminating himself: if he’s already cut a deal and he knows he won’t be punished one way or the other. Just something to think about. Help fund Palmer Report
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report