Top Democrats are demanding that President Trump fire Michael Flynn immediately after Flynn was busted for possibly undermining Russian sanctions behind President Obama’s back.
This was not a one-time contact, either. This contact began before the election and continued through the transition, according to the Washington Post and the New York Times. This means that Gen Flynn lied to Vice President Mike Pence, who then lied to the public.
The top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, Rep. Adam Schiff said in a statement:
If General Flynn secretly discussed with Russia undermining US sanctions, and misled American people, he can no longer serve. pic.twitter.com/FdqhRL41Bw
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) February 10, 2017
Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Eliot Engel (D- NY) demanded that Trump fire General Flynn on Friday, “If General Flynn negotiated with Russia to change American policy, he may be in violation of the Logan Act, which bars such conduct. The President must relieve General Flynn immediately.”
The Logan Act tries to prohibit the undermining of our government by forbidding unauthorized citizens from negotiating with foreign governments that are in a dispute with the United States.
“It’s clear that concerns about General Flynn’s ties to Russia were well warranted. It’s unacceptable that during the transition, General Flynn discussed lifting sanctions with Russia’s ambassador. This action would be deeply troubling under any circumstances, but considering Russia’s effort to tip the election toward President Trump, the General’s actions are disqualifying.”
Engel also pointed out, “Either General Flynn lied to the Administration or the Administration lied to the American people.”
“To make matters worse, the Administration has been misleading the public about this situation ever since. Either General Flynn lied to the Administration or the Administration lied to the American people.”
The Trump administration’s blatant incompetency (and that’s the generous reading) puts the country in jeopardy.
“In any case, the Administration’s sloppy handling of such a serious issue creates a threat smack in the middle of our national security apparatus,” Engel charged.
Engel called for Republicans in Congress to act as if they care about their country being undermined for Russian purposes by conducing a thorough investigation into Russia’s illegal interference in our elections. That read, “Congress must conduct a thorough, nonpartisan investigation into Russia’s illegal interference in our election and take steps to punish those responsible.”
The Trump administration’s ties to Russia are no small deal. We are talking about potentially illegal, treasonous activity, on week three.
Flynn has possibly broken the law, according to a report Thursday in the Washington Post, which details “a series of contacts between Flynn and Kislyak that began before the Nov. 8 election and continued during the transition.” This “Russian assault on the U.S. election” alarmed U.S. officials.
“Flynn’s communications with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were interpreted by some senior U.S. officials as an inappropriate and potentially illegal signal to the Kremlin that it could expect a reprieve from sanctions that were being imposed by the Obama administration in late December to punish Russia for its alleged interference in the 2016 election.”
Now why would the Trump administration want to reward Putin for interfering in the election that Trump won by a shred in three Midwestern states, while losing the popular vote by historic margins.
That is the question.
Kudos to the Trump administration for managing, on week 3, to already test the never before prosecuted Logan Act. Yes, that’s right. No one else has ever tried so blatantly to use our country to benefit a foreign power.
Flynn needs to be fired, but that is just the start of cleaning out the Russian influence from the corrupt and possibly treasonous Trump administration.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.