Tags: Donald Trump | Michael Flynn | Russia Probe | Trump Administration | logan act | white house | counsel

Report: WH Counsel Aware of Potential Flynn Violations When Trump Took Office

Report: WH Counsel Aware of Potential Flynn Violations When Trump Took Office
White House counsel Don McGahn (Mary Altaffer/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 21 December 2017 10:16 PM

White House counsel Don McGahn was looking at whether former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn violated federal laws just days after President Donald Trump moved into the White House, Foreign Policy reported.

The revelation was contained in records the White House turned over to FBI special counsel Robert Mueller showing McGahn researched federal law dealing both with lying to federal investigators and with violations of the Logan Act, a centuries-old federal law prohibiting private citizens from negotiating with foreign governments, FP reported, citing three unnamed sources.

The records also reveal McGahn warned Trump about Flynn's possible violations, FP reported, citing two of the sources.

The disclosure that these records exist and that they are in the possession of the special counsel could bolster any potential obstruction of justice case against Trump, FP reported.

McGahn conducted the analysis shortly after learning Flynn, on Dec. 29, 2016 — while Barack Obama was still president — had counseled the Russian ambassador to the United States at the time, Sergey Kislyak, not to retaliate against U.S. economic sanctions imposed against Russia by the outgoing administration.

McGahn believed Flynn, and possibly anyone who authorized or approved of such contacts, would be in potential violation of the Logan Act, FP reported.

FP reported one unnamed source confirmed the White House counsel's office conducted research on the possible legal violations, but disputed some of the details, including who conducted the research, and there were records related to that work.

McGahn later drafted "a memo that reflected a timeline of events leading up to Flynn's resignation, but that was after the resignation so it would be inaccurate to say McGahn briefed the President around the same time of the creation of that document [if that is the document you are referring to]," that source told FP.

Flynn pleaded guilty in federal court in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 1 to felony charges of lying to the FBI. He has not been charged with violating the Logan Act.

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White House records turned over the FBI special counsel Robert Mueller show White House counsel Don McGahn had researched federal laws on lying to investigators and the centuries-old Logan Act, Foreign Policy reported.
logan act, white house, counsel, don mcgahn
Thursday, 21 December 2017 10:16 PM
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