Michael Flynn passed his resignation to the administration over claims that he discussed the country’s sanctions with Russia even before Donald Trump was elected President of the United States. Last Tuesday, the spokesperson of White House told the media that Pres. Trump already knew about the emergence of Flynn’s scandal weeks ago. Calls for an investigation have encountered cold responses from a couple of senior Republicans.
The development came because New York Times has reported intercepted calls and phone records that show members of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and some of his associates having repeated conversations with Russian intelligence senior officials. These calls took place one year before the election.
The administration spoke to the media and said that officials had not seen the evidence which would prove that Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia in order to influence the presidential race or to hack the country’s Democratic National Committee. House intelligence committees and the FBI are examining Russia’s involvement with the election. Nothing is clear whether the claims that recently emerged will be accounted for in the investigation.
Why Flynn Resigned
Mr. Flynn stood down over accusations that he had talked about US sanctions with an envoy of Russia last December before Pres. Trump took office. He could have broken the Logan Act by conducting, as a private individual, US diplomacy. This even happened before he was given the title of National Security Adviser.
Flynn denied talking about sanctions with the Russian Ambassador, Sergei Kislyak. Mike Pence, the country’s newest Vice President, denied the accusations on Flynn’s behalf. The White House acknowledged that they knew about Flynn’s contacts with Russia on 26th of January, 2017. However, Pres. Trump concluded that Mr. Flynn did not break any law.
According to Sean Spicer, White House spokesman, White House lawyers questioned Mr. Flynn and conducted a review before they reached a similar conclusion to that of the President. However, the trust is already gone. White House Counsellor, Kellyanne Conway, said last Tuesday that in the end, misleading the Vice-President made the situation even worse and ‘unsustainable.’ In Mr. Flynn’s first days as the national security adviser, he was questioned by multiple FBI agents.
What Flynn Says
In an interview, Mr. Flynn said that he did not cross any lines in the conversation that he had with the Russian ambassador. He added that he only discussed the 25 Russian diplomats’ expulsion but not US sanctions. Mr. Flynn said he is concerned about the leak of classified information. He even said that it is a crime to take something off the classified system to give to a reporter.
In Flynn’s resignation letter, he stated that he briefed Mike Pence and all the others with the necessary information regarding his phone calls with Russia’s ambassador. He justified by saying that the incomplete information was only given due to the presidential transition. As for Donald Trump, he is wondering why there are already so many leaks that are coming out of the White House.