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Trump Admits He Knew That White House Adviser Lied To The FBI

Donald Trump’s Twitter habit might be getting him into serious trouble.

According to multiple news outlets, the president appeared to incriminate himself on Sunday, when he wrote about former national security adviser Michael Flynn. The previous day, Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI regarding his meeting with Russia’s ambassador to the United States after the 2016 election and before Trump took office. The retired general lost his White House job in February. “I had to fire (him) because he lied to the vice president and the FBI,” Trump tweeted. “He has pled guilty to those lies. It is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. There was nothing to hide!”

It was the first time the president had revealed that he knew about Flynn’s misstatements to federal investigators, according to Think Progress. The news site pointed out that the adviser’s forced resignation occurred months before Trump fired FBI Director James Comey and later acknowledged that he was trying to stop the bureau’s probe of Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Legal experts believe the admission may have put the president in danger of being charged with obstructing justice.

Trump’s critics argue that the tweet about Flynn was further evidence of his guilt. “This is obstruction of justice,” Republican Congressman Ted Lieu of California declared. Matthew Miller, a former Democratic official in the Justice Department, agreed. “Oh my god, he just admitted to obstruction of justice,” he tweeted. “Trump knew Flynn lied to the FBI when he asked Comey to let it go.”

Comey testified to a congressional committee that the president was referring to the bureau’s investigation of Flynn when he told him on Feb. 14: “I hope you can let this go.” According to a memo Comey wrote following the conversation, Trump insisted that Flynn was innocent. Sunday’s tweet indicates that the president knew otherwise, which could mean he also lied to the FBI.

Trump will “regret that Twitter expanded to 280 characters, giving him more room to confess to obstruction of justice in his tweets,” Michael Waldman of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University predicted on MSNBC. “(The president) just said that Michael Flynn lying to the FBI was one of the reasons he fired him. … He then asked the then-director of the FBI to drop the investigation — and then he fired the director of the FBI.”

Trump lawyer John Dowd disclosed on ABC News that he wrote Sunday’s Twitter message for the president, The Huffington Post reported. The attorney conceded that the tweet was “sloppy.” The Washington Post cited two unidentified sources who confirmed that Dowd was the author.

The president issued a written statement Saturday, repeating his contention that his campaign did not conspire with Russia to interfere in the election. According to U.S. intelligence agencies, Russian leader Vladimir Putin ordered last year’s hacking of Democratic Party officials’ emails. The Kremlin strongman also may have been responsible for some of the misinformation about Hillary Clinton that appeared on social media during the campaign.

Source: ThinkProgress, HuffPost
Photo: YouTube

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