March 20, 2018

Flynn plea raises questions on how Trump could react

03 December 2017, 12:47 | Erma Lawrence

President Trump met with James Comey then the FBI director on Feb. 14

Not Released

"Yes, sir", the retired three star general and former military intelligence chief said when asked if he wanted to plead guilty. "There was nothing to hide!"

Special Counsel Robert Mueller's plea deal Friday with President Donald Trump's former national security adviser signaled that Mueller is closing in on senior officials of the 2016 Trump campaign, heightening the conflict between the two leading players in America's post-election Russian Federation drama.

But according to charging documents filed Friday by special counsel Robert Mueller, a "very senior member of the Presidential Transition Team" and another "senior" member of the same team directed Flynn to call Russian officials or counseled Flynn on how to discuss sanctions with the Russians.

Former Obama-era Justice Department spokesman Matthew Miller said Trump appears to have fessed up to breaking the law in his post - by admitting he knew Flynn fibbed while talking to the feds. Earlier in February, former FBI director James Comey said that Trump asked him to stop the investigation into Flynn. The New York Times and Washington Post report that the agent, Peter Strzok, as the FBI's deputy head of counterintelligence, played a major role in the investigations into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server as well as the possible links between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign.

The President's tweet raised immediate questions on whether he knew Flynn had lied to the Federal Bureau of Investigation when he fired him in February, including a tweet from Walter Shaub, the former director of the United States Office of Government Ethics.

Clinton and her supporters say Comey's moves in October cost her the 2016 election, and Trump and his Republican allies have used it to justify Comey's firing - the event that ultimately led to Mueller being appointed as special counsel.

Michael Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to lying to federal agents about phone calls with Russia's ambassador
Michael Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to lying to federal agents about phone calls with Russia's ambassador

Michael Flynn Jr., as he is known, accompanied his father on his 2015 trip to Moscow.

"No, I'm not", Trump said.

A plea agreement suggests that Flynn provided information to prosecutors beneficial to Mueller's investigation. She was joined in the meeting by a senior career official in the Justice Department. Strzok played a key role in the FBI investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server, the papers said.

Strzok also worked on the FBI investigation past year into whether then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information through her use of private email servers while Secretary of State.

People in the White House and beyond are waiting to see the next steps from Mueller, and what Flynn tells him that might direct those next steps.

Trump fired Comey in May.

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