Former acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal noted that the president and his senior advisors are likely “wigging out” over some of the critical lines in Robert Mueller’s sentencing memo for ret. Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn.
“Mueller got the president’s national security adviser to agree that he had committed a felony and is cooperating and now we are going to see what the roots of that cooperation is. That’s a big deal,” said Katyal, who explained how Mueller “delivered” today.
CNN host Chris Cuomo wondered why the FBI thought that Flynn wasn’t lying, but reporter Michael Isikoff explained the special counsel used “heavy-handed tactics.”
“That could have been a factor,” Isikoff explained. “Until we see the transcripts of his conversations with Kislyak it’s going to be hard to reach a final judgment on this. Michael Flynn has now going to be sentenced. His cooperation — it looks like is completed. There is no reason why Congress can’t step up to the plate and do what it should have been doing from the beginning which is calling the crucial witnesses like Mike Flynn and let him lay out what he can say and what he knows about interaction with the president. The same for Michael Cohen. We should see him testify in public next month if Congress does his job.”
Cuomo noted that Cohen is obviously willing because he said he wants to talk to anyone.
Katyal went on to say that if a person is in “Trumpland” and this document came out, they’re probably “wigging out.”
“I’m wigging out because last week [there was] Cohen, who knows about a lot of different things and Flynn knows about certain things that are of grave importance to our national security and Trump’s relationship to them,” Katyal said. “This is a double whammy that is very, very scary for the president.”
Cuomo anticipated what the president’s line of thinking might be after having someone read the memo.
“We fired him because he lied,” Cuomo said Trump might say. “Turkey, we didn’t know about it. He was a bad guy. We misjudged him. What does it have to do with me? It can’t have anything to do I’m the president. I don’t know who he is talking about, but it’s not me. I have a bunch of liars and bad guys, but my base seems to forgive me.”
Katyal recalled that one of the major allegations was whether Flynn was fired for one of those reasons or whether it was about “lying to Mike Pence,” as Trump said.
“But now this document said there is a guy in the room who knew that stuff, and he is cooperating with Mueller,” Katyal said.
Isikoff noted that one of his major questions was about the nature of the conversations between Flynn and Trump is after he was fired. It was during that time Trump told former FBI Director James Comey to “let him go.” It’s known that Flynn and Trump were still communicating during that time, and Isikoff hopes to see what the nature of those conversations were.
Watch the full discussion below: