Tags: Barack Obama | Donald Trump | obama | trump | flynn | warn

Officials: Obama Warned Trump Not to Hire Flynn

Image: Officials: Obama Warned Trump Not to Hire Flynn
President Donald Trump and former President Barack Obama (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)

By    |   Monday, 08 May 2017 11:49 AM

During their 90-minute Oval Office conversation right after last year's election, former President Barack Obama warned President Donald Trump against naming former Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to the position of national security adviser, NBC News reported Monday.

According to a senior White House official, during the meeting Obama remarked he "was not a fan of Michael Flynn," but another official said the statement appeared to have been made in jest.

Trump did name Flynn to be his national security adviser. Shortly thereafter, Flynn resigned the position in February over allegations he had spoken with Russian officials before Trump's inauguration and misled the White House, including Vice President Mike Pence, about the conversations.

In March, Flynn produced amended financial statements which disclosed he had received money from Russian News Agency RT as well as from two Russian firms for which he had worked. He also lobbied on behalf of the Turkish government.

News of Obama's warning regarding Flynn came on the day former acting Attorney General Sally Yates is scheduled to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee to testify regarding her knowledge of Flynn and his contacts with Russia and what she knew about how the news regarding Flynn leaked to the media.

Ahead of Monday's hearing, Trump tweeted:

The "W.H. Council" referenced in the president's tweet was Donald McGahn. Yates, while still acting attorney general, reportedly raised her concerns to him about Flynn, and more than a week later the news was leaked to The Washington Post.

The issue raises questions about the vetting process the Trump administration used to appoint Flynn to the high-level position. One Trump official said Obama had given the president "a general caution that he believed Flynn was not suitable for such a high level post," according to NBC.

It also calls into question the degree of correspondence the White House had with Russian officials, if any, prior to taking office.

Flynn also had served as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. James Clapper, former director of national intelligence, is set to testify on Monday before the Senate committee as well. Clapper was responsible for ousting Flynn from that position, NBC reported.

Republicans have said Yates was acting politically as a partisan Democratic holdover from the Obama administration, and those close to her don't expect she will go into much detail about the issue, the network said.

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During their 90-minute Oval Office conversation right after last year's election, former President Barack Obama warned President Donald Trump against naming former Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to the position of national security adviser, NBC News reported Monday.
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2017-49-08
Monday, 08 May 2017 11:49 AM
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