House Oversight Chairman, Jason Chaffetz, and ranking Democrat, Elijah Cummings, just reported that President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser did not properly disclose payments from Russia and it appears that he did not comply with the law. The House Oversight Committee reported this finding after completing the review of Flynn’s actions. “As a former military officer, you simply cannot take money from Russia, Turkey or anybody else. And it appears as if he did take that money. It was inappropriate. And there are repercussions for the violation of law,” Chaffetz said. They also said that the documents that were reviewed were “extremely troubling.”
Chaffetz said that the committee will now send a letter requesting information from the inspector general at the Department of Defense and the comptroller of the US Army to determine how they will handle news of Flynn’s security clearance and possible violations. One of the possible outcomes of this investigation is that they would seek repayment of tens of thousands of dollars from Flynn himself. Cummings added that according to the security clearance rules, knowingly leaving out payments from foreign governments is a felony that is punishable by up to five years in prison. But both Chaffetz and Cummings said that it was not for them to substantiate whether or not Flynn committed a crime. No officials have as of yet accused Flynn of committing any crimes.
Flynn’s lawyer, Robert Kelner, said Tuesday that Flynn was not hiding anything, making sure that it was known that Flynn briefed the Defense Intelligence Agency on his trip to Russia. “As has previously been reported, General Flynn briefed the Defense Intelligence Agency, a component agency of DoD, extensively regarding the RT speaking event trip both before and after the trip, and he answered any questions that were posed by DIA concerning the trip during those briefings,” Kelner said in a statement to CNN Tuesday.
This “troubling” announcement about Flynn comes just a week after CNN reported that Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, and senior adviser, has not yet given any details to the government about his foreign contacts. This is a condition that must be met before receiving top secret security clearance. When Kushner first submitted his forms to the FBI, he left the section about foreign contacts blank.
Since resigning from Trump’s team, Flynn has retained a lawyer and has offered to testify in exchange for immunity from prosecution. This offer has not been received as of yet.
What do you think about this recent finding from the House Oversight Committee?
Credit: CNN Politics