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Carter Page at CPAC in February 2020. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page filed a $75 million lawsuit against the FBI, Justice Department and former FBI Director James Comey, claiming he was the victim of “unlawful spying" during the bureau's Russia investigation.

Why it matters: The lawsuit largely echoes a DOJ inspector general report that found errors in applications to acquire wiretap warrants on Page through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA, according to AP.

Context: Inspector General Michael Horowitz, who investigated the origins of the 2016 Russia investigations, said in a 2019 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that he found no evidence of political bias in the FBI's scrutiny of Trump administration officials, including Page.

  • Horowitz also determined that the FBI was justified in opening its probe after receiving a tip on Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos.
  • However, the inspector general also counted at least 17 errors in Page's FISA application, including the omission of information that may have refuted allegations he was a Russian agent.

The big picture: The lawsuit, filed Friday, accuses the FBI of relying excessively on information complied by Christopher Steele, a former British spy, and that the bureau failed to tell the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court that Steele’s primary source contradicted information that Steele attributed to him.

  • The suit also claims the FBI misled the court about his relationship with the CIA.
  • Kevin Clinesmith, an ex-FBI lawyer, pleaded guilty in August to altering an email, saying Page had not been a source for the CIA when he was. The email was used in an application to renew a wiretap on Page.

Go deeper

Why Biden tapped William Burns for CIA

Photo: Ben Hider via Getty Images

President-elect Biden's selection of William Burns, a retired top diplomat, as his nominee for CIA director marks a potential pivot point for the agency.

Why it matters: Burns’ background is in statecraft, not subterfuge. His appointment may offer an unusual opportunity to better integrate the CIA’s intelligence-gathering, analysis and covert action capabilities with larger U.S. foreign policy aims.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: CDC director defends agency's response to pandemic — CDC warns highly transmissible coronavirus variant could become dominant in U.S. in March.
  2. Politics: Biden readies massive shifts in policy for his first days in office.
  3. Vaccine: Fauci: 100 million doses in 100 days is "absolutely" doable.
  4. Economy: Unemployment filings explode again.
  5. Tech: Kids' screen time sees a big increase.
  6. World: WHO team arrives in China to investigate pandemic origins.
Dave Lawler, author of World
3 hours ago - World

Alexey Navalny detained after landing back in Moscow

Navalny and his wife shortly before he was detained. Photo: Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny was detained upon his return to Moscow on Sunday, which came five months after he was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok. He returned despite being warned that he would be arrested.

The latest: Navalny was stopped at a customs checkpoint and led away alone by officers. He appeared to hug his wife goodbye, and his spokesman reports that his lawyer was not allowed to accompany him.