The following information comes from Powerline Blog.
We have been repeatedly told that Carter Page has been on the FBI radar as a spy since 2013. That was to make us all think a FISA warrant against him as a Russian agent in October 2016 was somehow feasible. Well, that appears to be untrue.
A former FBI agent tells a different story to Scott Johnson of Powerline and this one makes sense.
In 2013, the FBI was listening to Russians and not investigating or wiretapping Carter Page. They were investigating Russians and picked up Page who was in touch with Russians [on business].
As is standard, the FBI contacted Page and convinced him to cooperate with them against those Russians. In other words, they asked him to work undercover, ask questions. This is standard procedure.
The Russians probably knew what was going on. They called Page an “idiot”. Page as a master spy is a joke. Carter Page does come off as an idiot on TV. Master spy he is not.
A FISA warrant isn’t given out for talking to Russians. That’s still not a crime. The FBI account is unlikely.
Read the complaint against Carter Page: “Former Trump Aide Carter Page Was on U.S. Counterintelligence Radar Before Russia Dossier.”
Scott Johnson of Powerline blog has a theory:
Carter Page is featured in the complaint paragraphs 32-24, at pages 12-13. It explains exactly how the FBI learned about Carter Page. The Russians would need to be brain dead not to realize this is Page. Further, the email is not exactly a “clandestine intelligence” technique. Providing one’s personal, non-expert, opinions regarding “the current and future of the energy industry” to a Russian–any Russian–doesn’t make you an agent of the Russian government. And a willingness to discuss all this with the FBI is proof to the contrary.
None of this is bona fide proof but it’s pretty dang close.