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Obama warned Trump against hiring Flynn before inauguration

Obama warned Trump against hiring Flynn before inauguration

They met that afternoon at the White House, and Yates, accompanied by the top career official in the Justice Department's national security division, dropped a bomb: President Trump's national security adviser, Michael Flynn, had lied to Vice President Pence about Flynn's contacts with Russian Federation. Why did it then take 18 days for Flynn to be fired - a step that only took place when The Washington Post reported he had lied to Vice President Mike Pence about his calls with Russia's envoy to Washington?

Spicer said that Trump made the right decision to fire Yates before a reporter asked Spicer how she could be a "political opponent of the president".

The same day Yates offered the White House a review of the evidence against Flynn, she was sacked by Donald Trump for opposing his executive order mandating a ban on Muslim travel.

Instead, Mr Trump chose to play up former director of national intelligence James Clapper's acknowledgement during the same hearing that he was not aware of any evidence of collusion between Mr Trump and Russian Federation, which United States intelligence has concluded tried to sway the U.S. election in Mr Trump's favor.

When pressed, Trump's top spokesman conjured only this in the way of evidence: He said it was "widely rumored" that Yates was a proponent of the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, and expected to have a major role in a Clinton administration.

Mr Pence said in January that Mr Flynn denied those calls involved sanctions placed on Russian Federation by the Obama administration in response to its election meddling.

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Spicer added that he was not aware of any security restrictions placed on Flynn after the warning. Flynn's conversations with Sergey Kislyak, the Russian ambassador to USA was a primary focus of the Yates's testimony.

Trump moved to distance himself from his former adviser's troubles Monday, tweeting that it was the Obama administration that gave Flynn "the highest security clearance" when he worked at the Pentagon.

As Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., said to Yates, "Without that published report, and without the free press telling us a lot of what went on, Michael Flynn might still be sitting in the White House as national security adviser, because by January 30th, you were forced to resign, correct?" And certainly never mind the evidence that Yates presented to the White House. "To state the obvious, you don't want your national security adviser compromised with the Russians", Yates testified.

Clapper qualified his earlier statement that he knew of no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation - a point House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes has used to exculpate Trump. But President Donald Trump waited 18 days before showing Flynn the door for lying to Pence. Trump was notified immediately of Yates' concerns about Flynn.

The problem with that explanation is this: Yates talked to White House counsel Don McGahn about Flynn being compromised by the Russians on January 26 and January 27.

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