Corey Lewandowski “Forgot” He Gave Carter Page Permission for Russia Trip

Trump campaign advisor Carter Page during a trip to Moscow in December 2016.Korotayev Artyom/TASS via ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Carter Page, the idiot cousin of the Trump campaign, went on a trip to Russia last June. It was, he insists, a personal visit, not something done on behalf of the campaign. And he didn’t talk to any Russian officials anyway.

But guess what? Email exchanges suggest that, in fact, he did meet with Russian officials. And he reported back to the campaign about them. And he got permission from the campaign to take the trip. And he offered to step aside if Trump himself wanted to go in his place.

The Trump campaign, of course, says that Page—who was part of Trump’s five-person foreign policy team—was just some random volunteer guy that nobody ever even talked to. And Corey Lewandowski says that as Trump’s campaign manager at the time, he never gave Page permission for anything. No how, no way. Except, um, for those pesky emails:

During an interview on Fox News on Tuesday evening, former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski claimed the distraction created by Father’s Day resulted in him being unable to remember an email sent to him by former campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page. In the email, Page sought and ultimately received permission from Lewandowski to travel to Moscow.

“You have to remember, in the context of the campaign world––now, my memory has been refreshed, but to be clear, from what I understand and what I recall, that email was sent on June 19th of 2016, so about 18 months ago,” Lewandowski said. “It also happened to be Father’s Day on a Sunday, and it also happened to be the day prior to me being terminated from the campaign, so with all due respect, there were many other things on my mind that day other than trying to understand why a volunteer was telling me he may or may not be traveling outside the country.”

I really wonder what the story is with Trump and Russia. The full-blown collusion theory still seems pretty unlikely to me.¹ But obviously there was something. Just for starters, Trump wouldn’t be so obviously panicked by the whole thing if nothing untoward happened. And every day brings new evidence of something that some Trumpkin “forgot.” This whole thing is weird as hell.

¹Partly this is because I don’t think even Trump and his team could be so dumb. The evidence is clear that they’re pretty dumb, but are they that dumb? I dunno. Nixon was, and he was actually a pretty smart guy.

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. It's our first time asking for an outpouring of support since screams of FAKE NEWS and so much of what Trump stood for made everything we do so visceral. Like most newsrooms, we face incredibly hard budget realities, and it's unnerving needing to raise big money when traffic is down.

So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate