Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo says the FBI is “our own version of the KGB.”

Later, he insisted he was kidding.

Appearing Thursday on Katy Tur’s MSNBC program, Caputo complained the FBI’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election is turning the United States “into Russia.”

Caputo who spent six months on the Trump team, worked in Russia during the 1990s and, in the early 2000s worked for Gazprom Media, the Russian conglom that supported Russian ruler Vladimir V. Putin.

“Some of the stuff that’s going on, it’s really concerning to me,” he told Tur. “I’m trying to keep an open mind. I’ve known FBI agents and I’ve worked with FBI off and on throughout my career. I’m very concerned about this because, I’ll tell you, it turns out it might have been redundant if Donald Trump had ever tried to collude with Russia. We’re turning into Russia ourselves, and complete with our own version of the KGB.”

“Who are you calling the KGB, Michael?” Tur shot back.

“I’m telling you the people involved in this investigation and the things that I’m hearing that may in fact be in this memo deserve to be exposed, because weaponizing the Department of Justice…”

Tur cut him off before he could finish his thoughts about a memo the House Judiciary Committee has produced that purports to show FBI wrongdoing in the probe.

“So you’re saying that people in the FBI are actually in the KGB, or acting like the KGB?” she asked.

“No, come on,” he answered. “Not part of the KGB. I was being facetious, as you know,” he said, switching gears to “joking.”

“It’s funny how the jokes that were told between these two lovers on texts are hilarious to you guys at MSNBC, but when I tell a joke, you don’t get it,” he scolded.

Those texts, between FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, described Trump as an “idiot” and a “loathsome human,” and have become a focal point of Trump supporters’ claims that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia and the Trump campaign is biased. Strozk and Page, who worked briefly for Mueller, were removed from the investigation after Mueller learned of them.

“They were private messages to each other,’ Tur pointed out to Caputo. “You’re on national television – you’re saying that people in the FBI are acting like the KGB.”

“Yeah, but when I tell a joke you don’t get it,” Caputo insisted stoutly.

“You’re going into a radical zone, to say that the FBI is corrupt and the FBI is working in this conspiracy to take down the president; members of the FBI are acting more like the KGB,” Tur cautioned. “That is a radical thing to say on national television, Michael.”

“Absolutely,” he answered. “It’s also a joke, which I was hoping you would laugh at like you laughed at the FBI texts.”

“This is just politics as usual, Katy, and wringing your hands over this I think is a little bit over the top,” he concluded.

“Politics as usual,” Tur said, wrapping up the interview.

“Seems kind of sad,” she added.