Elijah Cummings of the House oversight committee claimed the former national security adviser appeared to lie to Obama-era investigators about his foreign ties
Former national security adviser Michael Flynn appears to have lied about his foreign ties to Barack Obama-era investigators who were weighing whether to renew his security clearances, according to a letter published by Congressman Elijah Cummings, the ranking member of the House oversight committee.
The accusation of a stark new violation of law by the man Donald Trump allegedly called a good guy comes on the heels of allegations that he had failed to disclose ties to foreign governments as he joined the Trump administration.
Neither Flynn nor his lawyers had immediate comment on the latest charges.
On the same day, a Washington Post report citing unnamed officials said that Trump in March asked the heads of two powerful intelligence agencies to push back against the revelation that the FBI had an open investigation of alleged ties between Russia and Trumps presidential campaign.
Both officials director of national intelligence Dan Coats and Adm Mike Rogers of the National Security Agency declined the presidents request as inappropriate, the Post reported.
The White House does not confirm or deny unsubstantiated claims based on illegal leaks from anonymous individuals, a White House spokesman said.
But the behavior by the Trump White House would have fit a pattern. Chief of staff Reince Priebus was in touch with FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe in February on the topic of the Russians and the Trump campaign, the White House acknowledged.
We didnt try to knock the story down. We asked them to tell the truth, press secretary Sean Spicer said at the time.
Cummings letter was released hours after Flynn, through his lawyers, defied a separate congressional committee, refusing to comply with a Senate intelligence committee subpoena for documents relating to his foreign activities. Flynn is a person of interest in multiple investigations of alleged Russian tampering in the 2016 presidential election, including a special counsel investigation.
Flynn is accused of doing paid work for entities with ties to the Russian and Turkish governments and then not disclosing that work even as he continued to work on the Trump campaign and then to serve, briefly, as Trumps national security adviser.
Trump fired Flynn after it was revealed that Flynn had conversations with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak that Flynn had apparently hidden from vice-president Michael Pence and others in the administration.
He is the target on nearly a daily basis of outrageous allegations, his lawyers said Monday.
The latest Flynn bombshell exploded as Trump completed the third day of a nine-day foreign tour meant to highlight his credentials as a global leader and underscore his administrations diplomacy chops.
The White House did not immediately comment on Cummings accusation against Flynn. Trump has insisted on Flynns probity, blaming the media and leaks for his falling out with the administration.