Update: It is being reported by the mainstream media that former national security adviser Michael Flynn is expected to testify that President Trump, while he was still a candidate, instructed him to make direct contact with Russian officials. The precise content of what this meeting has yet to be reported, nor has the validity of this report — which has been covering the pages of mainstream media journals and websites — been confirmed. Citing an anonymous source, ABC News' Brian Ross first broke the story, insinuating that Flynn's impending statement could be trouble for Trump.
It was just reported a White House lawyer, Ty Cobb, released a statement about Flynn's guilty plea. The lawyer reminds readers that Flynn was not somebody necessarily picked by Trump, but was somebody who was previously a White House official under Barack Obama. The statement then points out that Flynn was fired from the White House for false statements.
"Nothing about this guilty plea or the charge implicates anyone other than Mr. Flynn," reads the statement.
"The conclusion of this phase of the Special Counsel's work demonstrates again that the Special Counsel is moving with all deliberate speed and clears the way for a prompt and reasonable conclusion," continues the statement.
President Trump's former national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, pleaded guilty on Friday morning for lying to the F.B.I. about conversations with the Russians last December. The conversation occurred with a Russian ambassador during the presidential transition.
According to to the New York Times, Flynn's plea brings the special counsel investigation of Russian interference into the 2016 elections "into Trump's inner circle." More specifically, the charges indicate that Flynn was cooperating with the special counsel, but also that he was engaging in questionable behavior, especially in lying to the F.B.I.
This moment comes at a very difficult time for President Trump. With the economy booming, the stock market soaring, and the Republican tax plan gaining enough votes to pass, things were looking very good for President Trump. Indeed, his campaign promise to lower taxes — particularly the corporate tax, which is very high compared to other industrialized nations — was coming into completion. Now, however, the mainstream media will surely refuse to cover the full extent of Trump's economic agenda and focus on recent news about Michael T. Flynn and Russia.
As the New York Times puts it, the news "marked an unwelcome headline at a time when the president’s team is hoping to focus public attention on what they argue is an impressive list of accomplishments in his first year."
BBC writes that Flynn is the only senior member of the Trump administration who has been indicted by the Mueller investigation.
In October, Trump's former presidential campaign manager, Paul Manafort, was alleged to be conspiring to defraud the US in his negotiations and interactions with Ukraine. Moreover, it was also revealed that an ex-aide, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty to making false statements to the FBI.
Fox News reports that Flynn is the fourth person charged in connection with Mueller's investigation. In particular, Mueller's team announced charges last month against three other Trump campaign officials, consisting of former chairman Paul Manafort and his business partner Rick Gates, as well as former foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos.
Flynn was forced to resign in February after Donald Trump and the White House claimed that he misled them about whether he had discussed sanctions with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.
This is a developing story.
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