Last year, the world of American politics was turned upside down when it was revealed that Russia may have influenced the U.S. presidential election. And today, December 1st, Trump’s former national security advisor, Michael Flynn, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his communications with Russia.
But what exactly did he lie about?
Flynn joined then-candidate Donald Trump’s campaign in February 2016. After Trump’s inauguration, he was appointed national security adviser. But in January, conversations surfaced between Flynn and the Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak. Flynn had previously denied to the FBI that he spoke with Russian officials while President Barack Obama was still in office. Flynn resigned on February 14th after facing pressure from the administration to do so.
Special counsel Robert Mueller, who is leading the investigation on Russian involvement, announced that Flynn would cooperate with him and the prosecution. Mueller’s office also revealed that Flynn had lied twice to the FBI. On the first occasion, he denied having a conversation with Kislyak on December 29th, 2016 in which he discussed sanctions that the U.S. had placed on Russia that day.
Court documents also show that Flynn had lied about trying to persuade Kislyak to delay a U.N. Security Council vote on Israeli settlements on December 22nd, 2016.
So what will happen to Flynn now?
Flynn’s guilty plea makes him the fourth former Trump campaign official to be convicted in the Russia investigation. He faces up to five years in prison for lying to the FBI. According to ABC News, Flynn has said he will testify that, as president-elect, Trump told him to contact Russian officials.
With the news of Flynn’s indictment, the Russia investigation seems to be ramping up. And if Flynn testifies against Trump, there could be major consequences for the presidency. There’s no way to tell how this investigation will play out, but we’ll be watching for more updates.