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White House was warned Trump aide Flynn a blackmail risk

18 May 2017

"We believed that General Flynn was compromised with respect to the Russians", CNN quoted Yates on Monday addressing a Senate judiciary panel in a high-profile hearing on Russian meddling into the 2016 Presidential election.

The hearing was led by South Carolina's Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

He told reporters Yates was "not exactly a supporter of the president's agenda", an apparent reference to her firing over ordering the Justice Department to not defend Trump's initial executive order banning individuals from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States.

The key takeaways from the very partisan hearings were based around the timeline and intentions leading up to the controversial firing of former National Security Advisor General Mike Flynn, and the continued questions about the Trump campaign's connections to Russian Federation. Flynn resigned from his post in February after it was revealed that, contrary to his earlier claims, he had discussed USA sanctions on Russia with the Russian ambassador before Trump was inaugurated. She said McGahn asked about the applicability of criminal law.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer acknowledged that President Obama did make clear in November that he was "not a fan" of Michael Flynn.

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Spicer said that if Obama "was seriously concerned" about Flynn's connections to Russian Federation or other foreign countries, he should have withheld Flynn's security clearance.

The contact drew heightened scrutiny on the heels of the intelligence community's assessment that Russian Federation had interfered in the USA election to help Trump and hurt Hillary Clinton.

However, it took 18 days from the second meeting - and only after the news was leaked and published by the Washington Post - for the White House to fire Flynn.

This development comes after former president Barrack Obama [official website] said he had warned Trump not to hire Flynn [NYT report].

After the hearing Monday, Trump claimed in a tweet that Yates said "nothing but old news".

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The AP interviewed multiple former USA officials, most of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss sensitive national security information. Another official said Obama's remark seemed like it was made in jest.

Spicer referred to Flynn as a "good man" who President Trump didn't want to smear. Obama that month told one of his closest advisers that the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

So it is now confirmed, under oath, by former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates. He retired when Trump took office. He did not elaborate.

Cruz asked Clapper what he would do if, hypothetically, his employee forwarded emails containing classified information.

"I hope that the American people recognize the severity of this threat and that we collectively counter it before it further erodes the fabric of our democracy", Clapper said yesterday.

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White House was warned Trump aide Flynn a blackmail risk