The House Intelligence Committee has issued subpoenas for former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former deputy Trump campaign chairman Rick Gates, two of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s most important cooperators.
Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said the two men “refused to fully cooperate with Congress.”
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The subpoenas demand that Flynn and Gates provide documents to the committee by June 26 and appear for sworn testimony on July 10. Flynn and Gates are both still cooperating with prosecutors on various criminal matters and have yet to be sentenced. Both pleaded guilty to crimes connected to Mueller’s probe.
Flynn pleaded guilty in December 2017 to lying to FBI agents when they interviewed him about his late 2016 contacts with Russia’s ambassador to the United States. Flynn admitted he initially misled investigators about whether the two men had discussed sanctions the outgoing Obama administration imposed for Russia’s interference in the election.
Gates, a longtime associate of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, admitted he lied to investigators in early 2018 and has been working with prosecutors since. His testimony helped reveal that Manafort had shared internal polling data with an associate who the FBI determined had links to Russian intelligence.
Flynn’s testimony aided Mueller’s probe of Russian interference as well as his investigation into whether President Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice. Among Mueller’s findings was evidence that Trump may have attempted to entice Flynn with a potential pardon, and Flynn provided a voicemail to prosecutors in which Trump personal attorney John Dowd reminded Flynn of the president’s warm feelings toward him and asked for insight into whether the former Trump aide had implicated Trump in any crimes.
Though Flynn is awaiting sentencing, he recently fired his legal team and hired a firebrand lawyer who has bashed the Mueller investigation and called for charges against Flynn to be dropped. Thursday morning, Trump tweeted about the change.
“General Michael Flynn, the 33 year war hero who has served with distinction, has not retained a good lawyer, he has retained a GREAT LAWYER, Sidney Powell. Best Wishes and Good Luck to them both!” Trump tweeted.
In his letter to Flynn, Schiff noted that the judge in his case, Emmet Sullivan, had urged Flynn to cooperate with the government to the fullest extent possible. Schiff suggested that cooperating with Congress’ probe could help convince the judge that he had taken the admonition seriously.
Similarly, in his letter to Gates, Schiff said he was disappointed that Gates didn’t view his obligation as a cooperating witness to include congressional probes.
Schiff signaled Wednesday that a subpoena of FBI Director Christopher Wray could be in the offing over the FBI’s refusal to disclose whether its counterintelligence investigation of the Trump campaign or associates is still ongoing.