National Security Adviser Michael Flynn reportedly apologized to Vice President Mike Pence, after news outlets revealed he may have discussed sanctions with the Russian ambassador before President Donald Trump Was inaugurated.
Since the Washington Post reported Thursday that Flynn discussed sanctions with the Russian ambassador to the United States before Trump’s inauguration, Democrats have called for his firing. Pence had previously defended Flynn against such accusations.
Reuters first reported Flynn’s apology after 1 p.m. ET on Monday, citing an unnamed White House official.
Shortly afterward, Fox News’ Jennifer Griffin also reported that Flynn apologized, citing a senior West Wing source, and that Pence and Flynn had a two-hour meeting Monday morning with Trump.
Fox also reported, in a separate article, that Pence had accepted Flynn’s apology, and that speculation about Flynn’s ouster was “palace intrigue” and “all squawk.”
“Obviously, they were not happy, but he is not gonna be gone by the end of the week,” a source told Fox.
USA Today reported that Flynn now admits he may have discussed sanctions during a phone call in December with Russian ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak, but that he can’t be sure. The paper also reported the apology took place over the phone.
The White House reportedly withdrew Flynn from a planned speaking slot at a National Defense Industrial Association symposium on Monday.
MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki asked White House adviser Kellyanne Conway Monday afternoon if Flynn engaging in diplomatic conversations with Russia as a private citizen, before he began his post in the White House, would be considered a fireable offense.
“You’re asking me to answer hypotheticals and you’re not looking at the other side, which is ‘What if it’s not true?’” she replied. “I haven’t heard that question at all. I only hear it in the negative context.” (edited)