A Republican congressman called Michael Flynn’s brief stint as national security adviser “indefensible” in light of a fresh report that the Trump administration knew before inauguration that he was under investigation for failing to register as a foreign agent.
Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) was pressed in an interview Thursday morning on the point that the torrent of scandalous White House news is “self-inflicted.” CNN’s Chris Cuomo referenced a Wednesday night New York Times report that in early January, Flynn informed Trump transition team lawyer Don McGahn that he was under investigation for acting as an unregistered lobbyist for Turkey during the campaign.
“Look, certainly that’s a failure of vetting, it’s a failure of judgment,” Dent told Cuomo. “There was certainly a lot of questions about General Flynn’s suitability for that position even before this revelation of the Turkish connection. So yeah, I really can’t defend that, that’s indefensible, and it’s just a terrible failure of judgment and vetting.”
Flynn was named national security adviser on Nov. 17, and he served officially in the position from Jan. 20-Feb. 13, when he was fired. McGahn, for his part, went on to be White House counsel.
Flynn only was fired after media organizations reported that he had misled Vice President Mike Pence and others about his conversations regarding sanctions with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. The firing came 18 days after then-acting Attorney General Sally Yates warned McGahn that Flynn had lied to White House officials about the same conversations.