After Michael Flynn’s latest push to testify on President Trump’s connection to Russia on the condition he has immunity, a lot of people started to wonder what could be going on and one former CIA official claims the White House is a “runaway train.” After Flynn said what he said, naturally people were going to talk. The question is, what does he have to say and could it change things in Washington, D.C. soon?
Jeremy Bash, a former Chief of Staff at the CIA, spoke about the Flynn situation. He spoke to MSNBC.
“The image I have in my head of the White House is a runaway train. The brakes are out… that is how much trouble we’re in.”
Bash was not done. He told Brian Williams on the 11th House that authorities would certainly grant Flynn the immunity he wanted but only under exceptional circumstances. He would point out the Iran-Contra affair under the Ronald Reagan administration in comparison of how difficult this process could end up being at the end of the day.
Bash claimed that authorities “would have to want to make the deal” with Flynn. He would go further in his thoughts.
“You can only give somebody immunity, full immunity, if it’s worth it. They have to believe it’s worth it in this case.”
Making immunity happen can be difficult because as Bash said, they have to know that what is being said is worth their investment in such a thing. However, this is involving Russian ties to the Trump administration. This is not some random case, as it literally involves the current administration. Really, it may the biggest time to give one. Why would Flynn ask for such a thing if what he has to say is not big enough to not only hurt him but possibly the Trump administration?
Bash claimed that something like an immunity has to go through the Justice Department, so a lot of it comes down to what they want to do. He would claim the following.
“And for the Justice Department to agree to give somebody like him immunity it means they want him to turn and testify against someone higher up in the food chain. Who is higher up in the food chain, higher than the national security adviser? There’s really only one person. And so this shows that the jeopardy of criminal liability actually extends all the way to the top.”
Michael Flynn is quite a big name to bring in to testify. He is a retired lieutenant general who headed up the Defense Intelligence Agency. He was eventually pushed out by the Barack Obama administration. Due to his knowledge, Donald Trump brought him on to advise his campaign back in 2015. Due to Trump winning the presidential election, he would end up becoming Trump’s National Security Adviser for only a few weeks before resigning.
It appears to clearly be a forced resigning at the end of the day. It happened after, according to the Trump administration, Flynn misled Vice President Mike Pence about his contacts with a Russian ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislak. Interestingly, Flynn seems to be pretty knowledgeable about the immunity process and even spoke about it. Back in September of 2016, Flynn spoke with Chuck Todd on Meet the Press.
“When you are given immunity that means you’ve probably committed a crime.”
This was in regards to aides to the Hillary Clinton campaign, but it is interesting that he spoke about things in such a way. Now he is the one asking for immunity because, as he claims, he may have committed a crime and truly needs this in order to testify. He cannot be forced to give his secrets out, but the United States cannot afford for Flynn to withhold knowledge on something as crucial as Trump allegedly having ties to Russia.
Flynn said he is only willing to talk to the Senate Intelligence Committee if he has the immunity he wants, therefore it must be given if Congress is ever to get some possible answers to possible ties. In a statement, Flynn’s lawyer Robert Kelner confirmed that discussions had taken place with both the House and Senate Intelligence Committees. He claimed that “General Flynn certainly has a story to tell, and he very much wants to tell it.”
The issue at the end of the day for Flynn is that he will not tell it unless he knows it will keep him from landing in prison, being fined, or even booted out of the nation. Everyone can understand why Flynn would want this, but the question is, what will he say and what does he have on the Trump administration?
Bash told MSNBC that there were some big questions regarding the nature of Flynn’s request for legal protection, saying, “Immunity from what? What is he in jeopardy of being prosecuted for?” He went on to talk about the fact that things could be more serious, and in the case of something like that being up to bat, he claimed the following.
“…conspiring with a foreign power to provide them national defense or national security information. That’s under the Espionage Act, that is a major felony, and that is essentially treason.”
If by chance Flynn did do this, obviously he would want an immunity. However, if that role he had was key to the information he has on the Trump administration then clearly Congress Intelligence would want to know about it. Bash further mentioned that Michael Flynn would possibly be falling into issues regarding his time as a Turkish lobbyist while attending a secret intelligence briefing with then-Presidential candidate Donald Trump. He went on to say this.
“It would not surprise me at all if what the prosecutors said to Flynn’s lawyers is, ‘We haven’t reached any conclusions on the Russian matter but we have your guy dead to rights for not registering under the laws requiring registration as a foreign agent and second of conspiring to engage in kidnapping. You better come in and make a deal.'”
This very well could be. Could Michael Flynn have realized that he was dead to rights and would be caught for all the things he did, so he is pushing for a big move so he can avoid jail time? The problem with this scenario is that whatever he says has to be believed for it to make any difference, and if the Intelligence Committee sees him as just a guy trying to get out of trouble, his words will become hollow. That means they need to know he has something special in order to even consider immunity.
The interesting situation for them would come down to the cards Flynn is holding. They don’t know what he has and what he has proven. It may be a lot of nothing. He could be holding some two’s. However, if he’s got a Royal Flush then this immunity possibility worked out best for the United States government, and it would be a massive blow to the Trump administration. If he offers nothing, it was a waste and Flynn avoids trouble. It’s a real Pandora’s box for Congress.
[Featured Image By Andrew Harnik/AP Images]