Tags: Russia Probe | michael caputo | papadopoulos | trump | campaign | manafort | indictment

Ex-Trump Aide Caputo: Papadopoulos a 'Coffee Boy', Not an Adviser

("New Day"/Twitter)

By    |   Tuesday, 31 October 2017 11:34 AM

Former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo Tuesday called George Papadopoulos, who had joined the effort as a foreign policy analyst, as being a "coffee boy" who never had any interaction with the leaders running the future president's race.

"I never heard of Papadopoulos," Caputo told CNN's "New Day" program. "The leaders of the Washington office of the campaign didn't even know who he was until his name appeared in the press. He was the coffee boy."

Papadopoulos joined President Donald Trump's campaign as an adviser in March, and his name was first linked with the race when Trump listed him as one of his foreign policy advisers. He is also shown in one picture sitting at a table with Trump and other key officials, including then-Sen. Jeff Sessions, who went on to become attorney general.

Caputo said Tuesday that he read about Papadopoulos in the middle of the summer this year, "like everyone else," and ridiculed the idea that the former campaign worker may have worn a wire to supply information to the FBI.

"If he was going to wear a wire, all we would know now is whether he prefers a caramel macchiato over regular American coffee in conversations with his barista," said Caputo. "All this talk is completely beyond the scope of his volunteer duty."

Papadopoulos pleaded guilty earlier this month to charges that he'd lied to the FBI about connections with Russians attempting to connect with the campaign.

"I don't see any coffee being passed around by Papadopoulos when he's sitting between the president and Jeff Sessions," show host Chris Cuomo argued. "He was important enough that when he started emailing about this stuff, he got the ear of Sam Clovis, [Paul] Manafort, communicating with Rick Gates about the suggestions and what to do about them. That is not what you do when a coffee boy asks you to do something."

Manafort, Trump's former campaign manager, and his deputy, Rick Gates, on Monday pleaded not guilty to several financial charges. Caputo said, though, that Manafort was "there to rebuff" people like Papadopulos, then 27, from involving the campaign in questionable activities.

"He pushed back and said the president is not going to be having any of these kind of meetings, and anyone who interprets that exchange between Paul and Rick Gates via email as saying that Paul was sending a lower level staffer to meetings with Russians doesn't understand the English language," said Caputo.

"Clearly he was saying a lower level staffer needed to communicate with these people and tell them these meetings were not going to happen."

Further, he said, "the fact that this kid was pushed back by the campaign chairman and people around the kid were told to calm him down, and he still went at the campaign five or six times to try to get action to senior leaders for the Russians tells me that he was up to something bad, this kid."

However, Caputo said he doesn't know why nobody blew the whistle on Papadopoulos.

Meanwhile, Trump's son, Donald Jr., approached a meeting with Russians, who had promised dirt on Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, the same way Papadopulos had, said Caputo.

"Paul Manafort and others showed up because he was the son of a candidate," he said. "It was a meeting that shouldn't have happened and devolved quickly and everybody left."

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Former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo Tuesday called George Papadopoulos, who had joined the effort as a foreign policy analyst, as being a "coffee boy" who never had any interaction with the leaders running the future president's race.
michael caputo, papadopoulos, trump, campaign, manafort, indictment
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2017-34-31
Tuesday, 31 October 2017 11:34 AM
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