After President Donald Trump’s former National Security Adviser pleaded guilty Friday to lying to the FBI, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) called for legislation to protect the Special Counsel from political interference.
“Michael Flynn’s admission of criminal guilt is shattering for the Trump presidency," Blumenthal said in a statement Friday. "Clearly, Flynn is cooperating – and he must continue to cooperate completely and candidly if he hopes to avoid even more serious criminal convictions."
Flynn admitted to lying about conversations with the Russian ambassador last December during the presidential transition, according to the New York Times. This brings the special counsel’s investigation into the "president’s inner circle," the Times said.
Flynn made the plea in federal court in Washington.
"The Special Counsel has breached the White House gates, reaching one of the president’s most trusted confidants and unmistakably implicating other top officials," Blumenthal said. "The exact charge sends a bombshell signal: it’s about the Russians. Specifically, Flynn lied about issues of pre-eminent Russian interests – sanctions, the United Nations, and Russian exchanges. Flynn’s betrayal of national security is an enduring black mark on our country’s history and a stunning violation of his oath of office. Incredibly, he lied to the FBI while he was the President’s chief national security adviser.”
Blumenthal wants to protect the Special Counsel from political interference as the investigation continues.
“The Special Counsel’s action demonstrates incomparable skill and courage, which now must be matched by Congress in approving legislation to protect him from any improper political interference," Blumenthal said. "The president’s past threats and intimidation show this danger is real and urgent as the investigation comes closer to the Oval Office. The Senate Judiciary Committee should immediately move legislation to protect the special counsel as I and others have proposed.”
Blumenthal also called for the Senate Judiciary Committee to "pursue its investigation with new urgency."
"The Judiciary Committee is investigating obstruction of justice directly relating to President Trump’s firing of [former FBI director] James Comey after Comey refused to drop the very investigation of Michael Flynn now culminating in this conviction," Blumenthal said. "The Judiciary Committee must issue subpoenas for documents and witness testimony – in public and under oath – as I have repeatedly urged, without continued delay.”
Click here for the story at the New York Times on Flynn's guilty plea.
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