The plot thickens
An American academic reportedly investigated the Trump campaign for the FBI in 2016
President Trump alleged on Twitter Thursday that the FBI "spied" on his campaign with an "embedded informant," citing a National Review story. "If so, this is bigger than Watergate!" he wrote.
In reports published Friday night, The Washington Post and The New York Times partially confirmed his account. Both papers reported an unnamed American academic who is now based in the U.K. met with Trump campaign advisers including Carter Page and George Papadopoulos, as well as campaign co-chair Sam Clovis, in 2016.
Described by the Post as a "longtime U.S. intelligence source," the academic was working as a source for the FBI's then-nascent investigation into Russian election meddling. The Times reports there is no evidence "the informant acted improperly" or that the inquiry was "politically motivated," as Trump claims.
The informant's name has been withheld over security concerns for himself and other ongoing investigations. However, speculation as to his identity is already underway, mostly based on the detail that the academic's meetings were framed as foreign policy discussions.