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Twice warned, Donald Trump stuck by Flynn despite ties with Russian Federation

11 May 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump insisted there is no evidence he colluded with Russia after a Senate hearing that highlighted warnings that his former national security adviser was vulnerable to Russian blackmail.

Yates testified at a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing that focused primarily on Flynn, and did not shed much light on other aspects of investigations of allegations that Russian Federation meddled in the 2016 USA election and whether there was collusion between President Donald Trump's campaign and Moscow.

Spicer said that after the White House first viewed the evidence and materials on February 2, which were first flagged by Yates on January 26, there were various meetings and discussions that took place leading up to the request for Flynn's resignation on February 13.

On Jan. 30, Trump fired Yates from the DOJ after she refused to defend his executive order prohibiting travel from several Muslim-majority countries. The former Acting Attorney General is due to testify before the House committee investigating Russian Federation, but a date has not been set.

Mr Obama, who had fired Mr Flynn as the head of the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), told Mr Trump that he would have profound concerns about Mr Flynn becoming a top national security aide.

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As well as the warning from Yates it now appears President Obama advised Trump against the hiring of Flynn, advice which the incoming president ignored.

Yes, Obama did appoint Yates to the Deputy Attorney General post in 2015, but before that, she was appointed acting U.S. Attorney for Georgia's Northern District by President George W. Bush in 2004.

Mr Trump made no mention of the fact that Mr Flynn had been fired from his position by the Obama administration in 2014. According to Yates, Flynn misled officials and media outlets like NBC News by stating that he did not discuss Barack Obama administration sanctions on Russian Federation when in fact he had.

Trump's administration was dubious when Yates approached the White House counsel in January, Spicer said, because she was "widely rumored" to be a "strong supporter" of Hillary Clinton.

Trump "never intended for that to discriminate on the basis of any particular religion", Jeffrey Wall, the US acting solicitor general, told judges of the Fourth US Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond during an intensely argued afternoon hearing.

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The subpoena was announced a day after Trump abruptly fired FBI Director James Comey, who had been leading the bureau's investigation of Russian Federation and the election.

According to multiple news reports, Yates warned the White House that Flynn's phone calls with Moscow envoy Sergey Kislyak, which United States intelligence secretly monitored, could leave him open to blackmail.

Investigators have been looking into whether Flynn properly disclosed payments from clients with links to foreign governments, including Russian Federation and Turkey, CNN said.

Yates repeatedly declined to discuss details of the investigation in a public forum. The White House says Flynn was sacked for misleading top officials about his contacts with Russia's ambassador to the United States.

"I would suggest that the reason she was asked to come back the second day was because it wasn't-it clearly wasn't that clear on the first day", Spicer said.

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But progress has been slow amid Democratic accusations that Republicans are stalling the investigation to protect the White House.

Twice warned, Donald Trump stuck by Flynn despite ties with Russian Federation