The news that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had obtained thousands of emails from President Trump’s transition team did not go over well with the Trumps, the GOP, or Fox News. While they attempted to say that Mueller had obtained the emails illegally, that theory has already been debunked.
However, the most incriminating email so far is one that Trump’s own White House counsel, Don McGahn, turned over at Mueller’s request. According to the Foreign Policy website, one of the most legitimate and trusted sources of news, knowledge of former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s crimes were known for several weeks before Trump or his team finally admitted that he had done anything wrong.
‘The White House turned over records this fall to special counsel Robert Mueller revealing that in the very first days of the Trump presidency, Don McGahn researched federal law dealing both with lying to federal investigators and with violations of the Logan Act…The records reflected concerns that McGahn, the White House counsel, had that Michael Flynn, then the president’s national security advisor, had possibly violated either one or both laws at the time, according to 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 President Donald Trump.
‘The records that McGahn turned over to the special counsel, portions of which were read to this reporter, indicate he researched both statutes and warned Trump about Flynn’s possible violations.’
To put that information into context, McGahn did his research on December 29, 2016 while President Obama was still in office, and warned Trump at the time. Acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates went to Don McGahn on January 26, 2017, to warn that Flynn was potentially compromised by Russia because of information they held against him. Michael Flynn was not fired until February 13, 2016.
This information carries several implications, the most important of which is that Donald Trump had to have known that Flynn committed the violation of the Logan Act as well as the more serious crime of lying to the FBI. Vice President Mike Pence went on national television repeatedly to insist that Flynn had done nothing wrong and that the “fake news media” was simply out to get him due to their bias against Trump.
That means that the president or the vice president, or likely both, knew they were lying and covered up the information into Flynn’s crimes, to which he has now pleaded guilty.
The implications, however, go even deeper. Sally Yates was fired on January 30, 2017, just four days after warning Trump’s legal counsel about Michael Flynn.
The infamous meeting between President Trump and former FBI Director James Comey, in which Trump cleared the room of witnesses and directed Comey to “let this thing go” in regards to Michael Flynn’s crimes, occurred on February 15, 2017, two days after Flynn was fired for, as Trump said at the time, lying to the vice president. Comey refused to do so and continued his investigation, and Trump asked him to at least clear his name to the public on April 11, 2017. When he again refused, Trump then fired Comey on May 6, 2017.
After just under a year in the White House, with speculation surrounding the president about his alleged cover-up of these crimes, these emails provide the clearest case against Trump for obstruction of justice.
Featured image via Getty/Win McNamee