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‘Not Trump’s fault’: House oversight chair Chaffetz blames Obama administration for failing to vet Flynn

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The saga over likely criminal wrongdoing by Michael Flynn took another turn for the bizarre today when Congressman Jason Chaffetz told MSNBC host Greta Van Susteren that the fault lay with former President Barack Obama.

Former Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn spent 24 days as National Security Advisor to Donald Trump — setting the record for the shortest tenure in the post when he resigned following news reports proving he had lied about his contacts with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

The latest Flynn scandal concerns potential violations of federal law by not disclosing payments from Russia while seeking a security clearance to work in the Trump White House.

“It was the Obama White House that this would have fallen under,” Chaffetz claimed. “I don’t think what happened here is really the fault of Donald Trump.”

The deflection of blame away from Trump by the Republican Chair of the House Oversight Committee referred to Obama appointing Flynn as Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. However, as the New York Times explained about this developing scandal, “it was only after Mr. Flynn was forced out as national security adviser that his dealings in Russia came into sharper focus.”

It was also revealed today that the Administration is stonewalling congressional investigators by refusing to turn over White House documents concerning the vetting, hiring and dismissal of Flynn. Following that revelation, Fox News host Shepard Smith used the term, “cover up” to refer to the lack of cooperation by the White House.

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Before being appointed by Trump, Flynn’s loyalty had been rewarded with a coveted speaking slot during the 2016 RNC Convention.

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Establishment Dems pressuring new congress members to attend AIPAC Israel junket: report

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For years, freshman Democratic lawmakers have faced pressure to attend an AIPAC sponsored trip to Israel, where they were denied access to Gaza and other territories controlled by Israel.

The pressure remains stronger than ever today, reports The Intercept, even as Israel's mideast policy is increasingly questioned.

Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) assured AIPAC that this year the trip would be as well attended as it has been previously. “Like many of you, I’ve traveled to the communities in the south of Israel that have endured rockets and tunnels. I’ve traveled with over 150 of my fellow Democratic members of Congress to meet with those who live under the constant threat of terror,” he said in an April address to AIPAC.

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Trump leveled by retired general for making Iran war decisions based on advice from Fox News hosts

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During a panel discussion on the increased tensions between the U.S. and Iran after a drone was shot down by the Middle Eastern country in international airspace, a retired general claimed he was worried about Donald Trump's response based upon who it appears the president listens to when it comes to advice.

Speaking with host John Berman, retired Lt. General Mark Hertling warned that the shootdown was a dangerous provocation.

"It's huge, John," Hertling explained. "You can go all the way from backing down completely to a full-scale war -- that's what's dangerous about this situation."

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DOJ money laundering probe of Deutsche Bank includes Kushner transactions: report

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The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is conducting a criminal investigation of possible money laundering violations by Deutsche Bank, and the New York Times is reporting that the probe will include taking a look at some 2016 transactions involving Kushner Cos. — the business owned by the family of Senior White House Advisor Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law.

In banking, reports of possibly suspicious activity are known as “suspicious activity reports,” and the DOJ is investigating why Deutsche Bank prepared such alerts for activity involving Kushner Cos. but did not file them. A key figure in the DOJ’s investigation is whistleblower Tammy McFadden, who helped prepare suspicious activity reports for Kushner Cos.-related transactions. McFadden is a former compliance officer for Deutsche Bank.

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