When Did Flynn Initiate Contact?

If Flynn initiated contact during the transition, there is not the same apparent, rapid path to impeachment.

Mike Flynn is prepared to testify that President Trump told him to initiate contact with the Russians. It seems the timing is a relevant question before we start talking about impeachment.

If President Trump asked Flynn to initiate the contact during the transition, there really is no crime readily apparent. The incoming administration is allowed to start talking to foreign leaders.

But if this happened on the campaign trail and was related to campaign activity, including the Clinton emails, Podesta emails, or the like, then I think we do run straight into the impeachment buzz saw. If a political campaign was seeking foreign involvement in the campaign (and this is what Democrats think), that campaign needs to be burned to the ground.

Again, though, based on the information circulating right now, it appears the contact happened during the transition. Why transition team officials lied about it is beyond me and they should certainly be punished for lying. But I do not see why a Presidential transition cannot start talking to foreign leaders.

What is so amazing here is the historic issue we are dealing with. It is always the coverup and never the crime. There is a real reminder there that everyone should be honest. And that still leaves the question of when this conversation with the President about contact with Russians took place.

Comments
No. 1-13
Bear8
Bear8

TO: GrammaT I think it is a classic example of "legal extortion"; a very problematic tactic used by an investigator or prosecutor, in this case, Mueller, who makes a deal with someone, who may or may not be guilty of anything, to reveal information, that may or may not be true, against a third party. The "deal" is based on a threat of prosecution. In the issue with Flynn, it is most likely the threat to charge he or members of his family with something, that may or may not be criminal. What Flynn was "forced" to do is plead guilty to knowingly providing false information to a law officer. IF Flynn did lie to the FBI as, has been stated; then why would the prosecutor believe any statements made by Flynn about another person would be truthful? Do we need a witness to testify that Flynn was being truthful about telling a lie? Will the threat of prosecuting Flynn or members of his family induce him to lie about others? I could take this another step; did the prosecutor lie to Flynn about his intentions? Very problematic!

Jules
Jules

I think if Flynn, or anyone, tried to get any foreign nation to actively participate in influencing the election by doing something, that is one thing. I personally don't see a problem in saying, in effect, "I've heard you have some information we might find helpful. Will you give it to me?" This would not be asking the foreign nation to engage in spying on the opposition, or inventing things to smear the opposition, or to take any active role at all. It would merely be saying that if there is information there, I'd like to see it. The honorable thing to do would be to then evaluate the information to determine if it is accurate, and not be sucked into an effort by the foreign nation to influence the election by providing false information. But if the information is true, and obtained legally by whomever, and is made available to someone who asks for it, I have no problem with that. Yes, there might be a fine line there. There might be the argument that the foreign nation has offered to share this information because they KNOW It might move our election in a direction they prefer. But it comes down to, if the information is correct, and refers to actions by the opposition, and does not reflect an effort by the foreign nation to interfere but was merely collected by that nation, it is simply there for the asking. It is not "manipulation" but just "transparency". Would we prefer that a foreign nation hide proof of egregious misdeeds by a candidate because of an accusation that revealing this proof might be considered an effort to change the outcome of the election? Would we prefer that a campaign be complicit in hiding proof of criminal behavior or serious misdeeds because of fear of being accused of collusion with the source of the information?

DrRansom
DrRansom

Even if he reached out during the campaign, that is no crime. Impeachment does not equal crime, especially when the democrats are as panicked as they are, the establishment is as repulsed as it is, and there are enough "conservatives" with bruised egos that they are willing to let such an injustice occur out of personal animosity.

Maelstrom
Maelstrom

@Nathan_Knight you don't even have the federal law backing you. If you make false statements to the Feds, not even under oath you are screwed! You can lie to the local police all day long with no issues till you get to court. Mis-state a date to the Feds and you go to jail!

Nathan_Knight
Nathan_Knight

I have been a detective for 15 years. The most idiotic thing a subject under investigation, or believes he/she may be under investigation, is talk to the police (me). I promise that you will not outsmart the police. By the time I talk to you it is usually just a formality, but you are holding a shovel.