Sally Yates testifies before Senate Judiciary Committee
Get into that later on. So what's the purpose. Of this hearing. Is to ask questions, of ms yates. And knowing. Then. What she knows, now. Which she had signed the carter page warrant application. Because in may of 2017. We didn't know, that the, russian, sub-source. Presented, evidence, to the fbi. In the form of a dossier. That was full of hearsay, and bar talk that was eventually. Repudiated. By the russian, sub-source. We did not, know in may of 2017. As clearly as we do now that without the dossier, there had been no warrant, issued. Against, uh, carter page. Michete. Signed the original, warrant application, in october. And a renewal, in january. And, after the horowitz, report, we now find there were 17, major violations. Of. Procedures, and protocols. Regarding, the warrant. And we'll give miss shates a chance to talk about, what she knew and when she knew it. Most importantly. To me. Is this january, the 5th meeting. Between. Ms yates. And. Interference, in the 2016. Election. And i want everyone to know ms yates included, that the russians, did interfere, in our election. It was the russians, who hacked into the dnc. And stole the clinton, emails. And the russians, were up to no good, that is not the. Bone of contention, with me. What happened. During crossfire, hurricane. Is very much a concern, of mine. So on january, the 4th, 2017. We now know. That. The fbi, agents. Who are investigating. General, flynn. As part of a counter, intelligence. Investigation. Had recommended. That general, flynn. Be dropped. From the. Crossfire, hurricane, investigation. The counter. The crossfire, hurricane. Team. Determined, that crossfire. Razor, flynn investigation. Was no longer a viable, candidate, as part of the larger crossfire, hurricane, umbrella, case. A review, of, logical. Databases. Did not yield any information. On which to predicate. Further, investigated. Investigative. Efforts. This is on january, the 4th 2017. Where the fbi. Was making a recommendation. Through a memo. To drop general flynn from the counterintelligence. Investigation. Called crossfire, hurricane. We now know that peter strzok, told mr barnett. Wait a minute. The seventh floor at the fbi. Uh wants to keep this thing going. What happened, next. A january. 5th meeting, in the oval, office. We've never had a chance to talk. To. Uh. Ms shaites about that meeting. What do we know. We know, that after the. General, briefing. There was a pull aside. That president, obama. Asked, comey. And yates. To stay behind. And, president, obama. Mentioned, the fact that he was aware. Of an intercept, between, general, flynn, and the russian ambassador, mr kislyak. Ms yates, was not aware, of that intercept. And she said. In her 302. She was so surprised, by the information, she was learning. That she was having a hard time processing. It. And listening to the conversation. At the same time. The president of the united states, knew. About the surveillance. Of general flynn, talking to the russian ambassador. But the number two at the justice, department, did not know. The question is who told the president. And did they have the authority. To tell the president. Did they go around, miss yates in the department, of justice. If so. Why. The bottom line about the january, 5th meeting. Is to find out how the number two at the department, of justice.
Was Unaware. Of, this event. And to the public why does this matter to you. General flynn was the incoming. National security, adviser. The election, was over, trump had won, he had picked his team. General flynn was going to be the national security, adviser, replacing, susan, rice. Well what have we learned. That there were intercepts. Between, general flynn. And mr kislyak, the russian ambassador. In december. Flynn was talking to kislyak. About, russian sanctions, imposed, by the obama administration. Those conversations. Have been released to the public. And he was talking, to the russians, about. Give us a chance to come in. Don't escalate. Now let's see if we can work through this. Here's what's so stunning, to me. There were people at the fbi. Considering, that a violation. Of the logan act. What is the logan act. It is a law that was written in, 1799. That prohibits. American, citizens. Without, permission, from the government. Talking, to foreign. Individuals. About differences, in policy. So i want everybody, in america, to understand, the way the system works. The transition. Team. Of the incoming, administration. Should be talking, to foreign leaders. And representatives. About how the. Transition. Will work. And about policy, differences. I'm going to ask every senator, to think, have you called a foreign, leader. In your time in the senate. To express, differences. Of concern. About a particular, administration. Policy. Have you violated, the logan act. I. Consistently. Talk to foreign leaders. About my differences. With republican. And democratic. Administrations. Have i violated. The logan act. I called up the israelis. And urged them to push back against the iran nuclear, agreement. Because, people in america, will listen to you, i thought it was a bad deal. Did i violate, the logan, act. I called the kurds. And our allies, in syria. The sdf. And i asked them to rally their allies, in washington. To push back against, president trump's decision. To withdraw, all of our forces, from syria. Did i violate the logan act. No. No one in history. Of the department, of justice. Has ever been, prosecuted. For violating. The logan, act, why are we having these hearings. To make sure that laws, like this cannot, be used as political, tools. To get people, you don't, like. And we need to clear up. Once and for all, how the logan act works in america. I dare say that every incoming, administration. Routinely. Has discussions. With foreign leaders. About policy, differences. And how things will be different. Ms yates. When she understood. What was going on. Was very concerned. That. A prosecution. Under the logan, act was being contemplated. The question, is, who brought up the logan, act in the january, 5th meeting, whose great idea, was this. Miss yates's, 302. Interview. Where she talked about, the january, 5th, meeting with the fbi. Doesn't, mention the vice president, being in the meeting. But what do we now know. We know she was shocked, and was having a hard time following the conversation. Because. She was stunned, that the president. Knew about the intercept. With flynn, and kislyak, and she did not. What have we learned. We've got an email. From susan, rice to herself. On inauguration. Day. And it starts, with on january, the 5th the meeting in question. Following a briefing by the ic, leadership. On rushing hacking, during the 2016. Presidential. Presidential, election. President. Obama. Had a brief follow-on, conversation. With fbi, director, jim comey. Debbie attorney, general sally yates in the old oval office. Vice president. Biden, and i, were also. Present. This is evidence. Coming from susan, rice. That in the january, 5th meeting, the set-aside. The vice president, was there. What else have we found, since. We last talked to ms yates. We found, agents. Notes from mr strzok.
That Comey. The act the, director of the fbi. Reported, to agent strzok. Who was intricately, involved in crossfire, hurricane. And gave him a readout, on the meeting. According, to agent strzok's. Notes. Handwritten, notes. It. Says. Vp. Logan, act. President. These are unusual, times, vp. I've been unintelligible. On the intel, committee, for 10 years and i've never. President, make sure you look at things and have the right people on it president. Is there anything, i shouldn't be telling, transition, team. This is the director. Kislyak. Calls. Appear, legit. Strzok. Is telling us that comey, told him. That not only the vice president was in the january. 5th set aside meeting, it was the vice president, who brought up the logan act. We need to find out, what happened. And who was there. And this is the first step, in the journey. And again why does it matter. It matters a lot. To me. We have oversight. Of the department, of justice, here, how could it be that the number, two in the department, of justice. Not know, about, an investigation. Of the incoming, national, security adviser. And the president, did. Who at the fbi, the department of justice. Went around michigan, to tell the president, about the investigation. Whose idea, was it. To suggest. That the interaction, between, flynn, and. Kislyak, was a violation, of the logan act. If that's going to be the standard, for this country. You're destroying, the ability, to do a transition. Into every senator, in this room. We have all violated, the logan, act under that theory. Every one of us has reached out to some foreign government, to show differences, with the current administration. The logan act has never been used for a reason. I think it was used here. As a sham, reason. To find. Out more, about. General flynn, who the obama, administration. Did not like. So the bottom line is. When this is over, we need to fix it. We need to make sure going forward in the next transition. No matter who wins. That you can talk with foreign leaders without being afraid, of going to jail. General flynn wasn't talking to the russians, about, hey pay my. House off, give me money. He was talking to the russians, about don't escalate, the sanctions. Fight. Give us a chance to come in and we'll start, over. My god if that's a violation, of the law. God help us all. And to her credit. Sally yates. Did not, want to go down that road. General flynn was interviewed on january, the 24th. By the fbi. Without, her permission. Against, her counsel. She recommended. That the. Department, of justice, notify. The tran. The current administration. About the concerns, they have with general flynn. That the right thing to do would be to call mcgann.
And The, trump administration. And tell them about the concerns, they had about. General flynn. The fbi, went down a different path. The fbi. Calls, flynn. And suggests, to him that you don't need a lawyer. That we just want to talk to you want to get it over quickly. Do you mind meeting with us. And when flynn said i'd like my lawyer says no if you do that we have to go way up to the chain, that will slow things down, and what did flynn tell mccabe. Well you've got the transcript. You know what i said. There was a violation, of the logan act, you had the transcript, why did you need to talk to him. They were going to manufacture. A crime not try to figure out what he did. That's my view. We'll see if over time that matters. I'll end on this. If it followed. Mrs yates advice. And gone to the white house to tell them about their concerns. The way you should have done it. Because she said, what. Happened with the fbi, was problematic. And inconsistent. With what should have happened. Been a lot of heartache, saved in this country. So we're going to keep pressing on to find out what happened in that january, 5th meeting. And we're going to try to fix this so it never, ever happens, again. Folks, i'll end with this. The obama administration. Department, of justice. Had one view of the logan, act. The fbi, had another view of the logan act. But the thought. That the logan, act could be used, against the incoming. National, security, adviser. Who was talking to the russians, about different policy, that that could be used as a basis. For an interview. That that could be a crime. Should shock us all. Because if it can happen to general flynn it can happen to everybody, on this committee because we do this, all the time. Senator. Feinstein. Thank you very much um, mr chairman. As i understand. This. Today. Is the second hearing, in the chairman's, examination. Of crossfire. Hurricane. That's the fbi's.
Investigation. Into, russian, election, interference. And ties to the trump campaign. Inspector. General, horowitz. Confirmed. After a 19-month. Investigation. The fbi, had a legitimate, basis. To investigate. Whether the trump campaign. Was involved, in russia's, efforts, to interfere. In the 2016. Election. Specifically. In late july. 2016. Australian. Officials, informed, the fbi. That trump, campaign, advisor, george, papadopoulos. Had advanced, knowledge. That russia, was willing, to quote. Assist, the trump campaign. End quote. By anonymously. Releasing, dirt, on clinton. In the form of thousands. Of emails. The fbi, learned this one week, after, wikileaks. Had released, 20, 000, emails. That russia had hacked. From the computers. Of the democratic. National, committee. Given the circumstances. It was essential. That the fbi. Investigate. Today's, witness. Former deputy, attorney, general sally, yates has said. Russia's, attack, on our election, required, both, an investigation. And a response. And as inspector, general horowitz, confirmed. The opening, of the investigation. Had nothing to do with reporting. From christopher, steele the so-called, steele, dossier. That counter, intelligence. Investigation. Crossfire. Hurricane. Eventually. Became the mueller, investigation. And former deputy, attorney, general rod rosenstein. Recently. Confirmed, to this committee. That the steele, dossier. Had nothing. To do, with the mueller investigation. Either. Mueller's, investigation. Detailed, sweeping. And systematic. Russian interference. In the 2016. Election. The special, counsel, determined. That the russian, government, quote. Perceived. It would benefit. From a trump presidency. And work to secure that outcome. End quote. The mueller, investigation. Uncovered. More than, 120. Contacts. Between the trump campaign. And individuals. Linked to russia. Revealing. That the trump campaign. Knew about. Welcomed. And expected. It would benefit, electorally. From russia's, interference. The investigation. Also, established. That individuals. Associated. With the trump campaign. Repeatedly. Lied to congress. The special, counsel. And the american, people. To conceal. Their contacts, with russia. We also, disagree. With president trump, and his allies. Claims. About michael flynn. Namely. That obama, officials. Including, vice president, biden. Unfairly. Targeted, flynn. In order to undermine. Trump's, presidency. And the facts, are well known. And not in dispute. But let me review them. In late december. 2016. President, obama, imposed, sanctions. To punish, russia. For its unprecedented. Attack, on our democracy. That same day. Flynn. Spoke. Several, times, with russian ambassador. Sergey, kislyak. Transcripts. Of the calls. Reveal, that flynn, urged, russia. Not to escalate. Matters. But to respond, to u.s sanctions. In a quote reciprocal. End quote. Or quote, even, keeled, end quote, manor. Flynn did not express, disapproval. For russia's, interference. In the election. Instead, he sent a clear, message. That the incoming, administration. Was not interested. In holding, russia, accountable. A message. That undermined. U.s, policy. When flynn, was interviewed, about his conversations. With kislyak. As part of crossfire. Hurricane. He did not tell, the truth. He was charged, by special, counsel, mueller. And pleaded, guilty, twice. To lying, to the fbi. He stated, in court. Under oath. That his actions, were wrong. And that he accepted, full, responsibility. For them. Despite. Flynn's, guilty, pleas. This may. Attorney, general, barr, intervened. To, dismiss, the case. Over the objection. Of career, prosecutors. Flynn, was not treated, unfairly. In fact it appears. That he was granted, favorable, treatment. By having the justice, department, seek to dismiss, his case. Even after, he admitted, guilt. And took responsibility. For his actions. I believe this sends the wrong message. It signals. That it. Is acceptable, to lie to the fbi. And it raises, legitimate. Questions. About whether, an ally, of the president.
Received, Special, treatment. Given her involvement. In the early stages. Of mr flynn's case. I hope that our witness, today. Former, deputy, attorney, general, sally yates. Can shed, additional. Light. Light. On why the flynn investigation. And charges. Were warranted. The, let me, just say this. The real, question. Isn't whether, the logan, act was violated. The question. Is whether flynn, was acting, on his own. Without, the president-elect's. Knowledge, or permission. If so. That was a counterintelligence. Problem. If however. The incoming. President, did know. That flynn, was talking to kislyak. Asking, russia. Not to overreact. To u.s sanctions. And suggesting. That the incoming, administration. Would not hold russia, accountable. Then why was, the incoming, president. Not interested. In holding, russia, accountable. For interfering. In the. 2016. Election. I hope. That we will use, the investigation's. Findings. To harden, our defenses. Including. Addressing, russia's attempts. To interfere. In the 2020. Election. And the president's. Unwillingness. To denounce. Foreign, interference. Thank you mr chairman. Thank you, thank you senator feinstein. Uh. Miss shates, is appearing here voluntarily. And i appreciate, that, she had some. Reasons, she couldn't be here in person which i think. Had been accommodating. Or legitimate. And we've agreed to the following. That. She will answer questions, within the following, scope. Knowledge of the events described, in the doj. Oig, report, in title review, of four fisa, applications. And other aspects. Of fbi, crossfire, hurricane investigation. Knowledge of the. Russian interference, of the 2016. Presidential, election. Ms yates knowledge of the investigation, of general flynn. And, we'll try to honor that i appreciate, her doing this voluntarily. With that understanding, i'd like to now, swear miss, yates in. I can't see you are you out there somewhere. I think we need to see her mister i think we do too. I think, it may be that i have to speak for you. Yeah we see you all right could you raise your right hand please. Do you solemnly, swear firm that testimony, about get this committee. Is the truth the whole truth and nothing but truth so if you got. Thank you. You may make your opening statement miss shane. Thank you chairman graham, ranking member feinstein. And distinguished. Members of the committee. Thank you for the opportunity, to testify. Here today. Now as some of you know i was a career, prosecutor. Department of justice. I was honored, to represent, the people of the united states, for over 27, years, through, five democratic. And republican. Administrations. And i took very seriously. My responsibility. To. Represent, the people. In a manner that engendered, the trust. Of the public i served. As you know i've testified, a number of times about the general. Topics. That occurred, in the oval office on january. 5th. 2017.. And can you all hear me. Um okay now. Much better. Right so so why don't i just go directly, to that. This meeting took place, just two months, after the 2016. Election. And this was at a time when we were just beginning, to come to terms, with. A foreign, adversary's. Stunning. Systematic. Attack, on our democracy. You know we've all heard, russian, interference. In our election, so much that. It's kind of lost its shock value, but. This, attack, on our homeland. Was indeed. Shocking. By late december. Our intelligence, community, had determined, that russia. Acting, on the direct, orders, of president vladimir, putin. Had engaged, in a massive, effort, to. Undermine, faith, in our democratic, processes. To, hurt, hillary clinton's, chance, of electability. And to aid, the candidacy. Of now president, donald trump. The russian, government had used, cyber, attacks. The strategic. Release, of stolen, information. And a coordinated. Campaign, to weaponize. Social media. Against american, citizens. This, unprecedented. Act of aggression. Could not go unanswered. So on december, 28th. The obama, administration. Took a first step, by ejecting, 35. Suspected, russian intelligence, operatives. And imposing. Other sanctions. On russia. They did this both, to punish, the russians. For their attack on our democracy. And. Importantly. To deter, them, from ever doing it again. As expected, the russians immediately, announced that they would retaliate. But then the next, day. They, inexplicably. Reversed, course. And announced, that, they didn't intend to take any, responsive, action.
The Administration. Was understandably. Perplexed. By this abrupt, change and. President, obama, asked the intel community. To try to figure out what had happened. And the fbi, discovered, the answer. General michael flynn, the incoming, national security, adviser. Was having back channel discussions, with russian ambassador, sergey kislyan. Recorded, conversations. Between general flynn and the ambassador, revealed, that. General flynn had essentially, neutered. The u.s government's, message, of deterrence. Far from, rebuking. The russians for their attack on our country. General flynn was conciliatory. He tried to persuade, the russians, not to escalate, the situation, so they could, reset, the relationship. The day, after general flynn's call with kislyak. Putin, himself. Announced, that the russians, wouldn't take any action. Whatsoever. To respond to america's, sanctions. And president trump. Tweeted, praise, of putin's decision. In a follow-up, call between kislyak, and flynn. Kislyak. Advised, flynn that, moscow, had made this decision. And made this course reversal. As a direct, result, of flynn's request. So that's what was happening, in the days, that led up to. This january, 5th meeting. On that day, the white house, had the intel, chiefs in, to brief the president, and the vice president and the national security, adviser. On their intelligence. Assessment, of russian interference. Portions, of that assessment. Were due to be released, publicly, the next day. Attorney general lynch was out of town, so i was asked to stand in in her place. Following, the briefing which took place in the oval office. The president asked director comey, and me to stay back with the vice president and the national security advisor. I recall, that the president, began, the after, meeting by saying something to the effect. That he had learned of the calls, between, kislyak. And flynn. And he didn't want to know anything, anymore, and he didn't want to influence, anything. But what he did, want to know. Was whether the white house could continue, to share. Sensitive, national, security, information, with general flynn. During the transition. Now at this point. I didn't know why the president, was asking this question. Because this was the first i had heard, of the calls, between. Lynn and kislyak. I was really, surprised. Both that general flynn had engaged in these discussions. And that director, comey knew about them but i didn't. And so after we left the oval office. Director, comey and i talked in the waiting room that's there outside the oval office and. I was frankly, irritated. With director, comey. For not having told me about the calls and i asked him. Why this was the first that i was hearing of this. And he told me that his team, had briefed the lawyers in the national security, division. About, about the calls, the previous, day and he expected, that the nsd, lawyers, would brief me. As it turned out the national security division lawyers, had in fact made an appointment. Already that was scheduled, with me for that. Afternoon. Now, while i don't recall. All the details, of the conversation.
In The oval office. My memory, is clear, on the important, points. The purpose, of this meeting, was for the president, to find out whether. Based on the calls, between, ambassador, kislyak. And general flynn. The transition, team needed to be careful. About what it was sharing, with general flynn. During the meeting. The president. The vice president. And the national security, adviser, did not in any way. Attempt to direct, or influence. Any kind of investigation. Something, like that. Would have set off alarms. For me. And it would have stuck out both at the time. And in my memory. No such thing, happened. The president was focused, entirely. On the national, security, implications. Of sharing, sensitive, intelligence, information, with general flynn. During the transition, a process that was obviously, already underway at the white house. I will close with this. In this election, year i hope that we won't lose sight, of the very, real threat. Posed by the ongoing, efforts of a foreign adversary, to. Undermine, our democratic, processes. And that we will continue. To proactively. Protect. The integrity, of our elections. I look forward to answering your questions. Thank you. Thank you very much, you mentioned, shock value, that, is shocking, what the russians did i agree we need to stop it, did you read the horowitz, report. Machetes. Were you shocked by it. I, certainly. Was shocked, yes, i think that the conduct, that was reflected. There, so let's talk about that conduct, right quick we're talking about, using, a document. That came from a russian, sub-source. To get a warrant against an american, citizen. Repeatedly. That was full of garbage, does that bother you. Well i'm not sure. Does it bother you that the fisa, court, rebuked, the department, of justice, and the fbi, regarding, the quarter. Carter, page, warrant application. Senator, i believe that the department of justice and the fbi, have a duty of candor with the fisa court do you believe they fulfilled that duty. No i do not believe that they did i think that there was a matter of fact, you signed that warrant application, in october, and january, is that correct. That's right. Knowing, now, knowing then what you know now would you sign that application. Senator i would never sign, any document, so i take that to be no. Because that document, was a fraud. Is that a fair statement, if you knew then what you know now you wouldn't have signed it. I wouldn't sign, anything, that i knew to contain, errors, or emissions, did that contain, errors in admissions. Yeah and i would never knowingly. Sign a document. I didn't do that in the 27, years i believe you didn't know. I believe you didn't know that what you signed was wrong the question is if you had known you wouldn't assign, it is that correct. No if i had known that it contained, incorrect information. I certainly wouldn't have signed. Thank you. And do you agree with me it did contain, incorrect, information. I i know that now based on the horowitz, that's all i'm trying to say. I'm not saying that you lied to the court i'm saying you signed something that was a lie and you didn't know it. Now let's talk about a january, 5th meeting. Um. Was the vice president, there. Yes he was. Okay. Did he mention the logan, act. You know i don't remember the vice president, saying much of anything, miss me, so you don't remember him mentioning the logan, act.
No I don't, did anybody, mention the logan act. I have a vague memory. Uh director, comey, mentioning the logan ad, okay what was he mentioning, the logan act about, and what context. Well that's, i'm not sure. If. You mentioned that, in the oval office meeting, or in, the meeting, what do you think about the, mr chairman let her answer the question, just because it's a woman testifying, doesn't mean she has to be cut off yeah thanks a lot senator lee, i really appreciate, that you're very constructive. So here's my question. Was the logan, act mentioned, in the meeting. I i don't, i recall. Direct, tommy mentioning, it at some point, but i'm not sure about senator graham and i want to you know that's fair, that's fair. You don't know if it's mentioned in the meeting or not, do you believe that, i do work with director. Mentioning, at some point i'm not sure right oh i got you oh i got you for the, discussion, he and i no i gotcha. Here's the question, did uh, general kislek's. Behavior. Amount to a violation, of the logan act in your opinion. It, certainly could have been a technical violation, but that was not the focus, of the fbi, or us that we were really focused on a counter intelligence. Well. Do you realize, on january, the 4th. The fbi. Recommended, to drop general flynn from crossfire, hurricane. I, understand, well i know that now i didn't know that so, but here's my point. On january, the 4th. The fbi, said there's no reason to keep looking at general, flynn. On january, the 5th, you have a meeting with the fbi, director. Where you believe he mentions, the logan, act in regard to general flynn, is that correct. What i understand. Senator, graham. Is that, and i didn't know at the time because i wasn't, privy, to the fbi's. Um, internal, documentation. Of the counterintelligence. Investigation. Did you even know what was going on. I didn't not specifically, with respect to general flynn, no, so you did not know the fbi, had a counterintelligence. Investigation. Of general flynn. No i did not until, so here's my here's my question. The january, 24th. Interview by general flynn. By two fbi, agents. Did you authorize, that interview. No i did not, did you counsel, the evidence but i don't think that there was a legitimate, basis for that. Say that again i'm sorry. I didn't authorize. That interview because i wasn't told about it in advance. But that's not the same thing as saying that i don't believe that there was a legitimate, basis for it, so you believe there was a legitimate, basis for the interview. Yes i did what was that basis. Well, at the time senator, graham we were in a situation, where we had evidence. That the russians, were attempting. To influence, the, election, the election, was over. Right. If you give me just a second here i can i think i can lay it out for you. No, no, here's what we're going to do i'm going to ask questions and you're going to give me answers. What was the basis. Of the general, flynn, interview, was it part of crossfire. Hurricane. My understanding yes it was. They just recommended, to drop him from crossfire, hurricane, the day before. Was it part, that was before, they had information. About, the calls. Please, we're talking now about the interview of january, 4th, was it to determine, if there was a violation, of the logan act was that the basis of the interview. No that was it was not. About, the logan, act per se it was to find out about his conversations. That he had didn't you have the transcript.
Of His conversations. That he was, providing, false information. Did did you have the transcripts. Of the conversation. Between. The national security, adviser. And the russian, point i know we've had what we call the cuts, at that point. The fbi, agents, may have had the actual, transfer, was this a counter, intelligence. Investigation. Of the phone call. This was a counterintelligence. Investigation. Of the trump campaign's, potential. Um uh relationship, with the russians. That makes no sense on january, the fourth they recommend, to drop flynn. They mention the logan, act and you advised. Against, prosecuting. The logan, act is that true. We never made an official decision, about whether we were going to do it but i think it was unlikely. Certainly unlikely, that we would receive, prosecution. That was not a primary. It was a counter, intelligence. Okay, here's what i want to understand. It's a counter intelligence. Investigation, that led to the interview. You didn't authorize, the interview, as a matter of fact you wanted, to go to the white house and tell them. About. The problem didn't you. That's right i didn't i thought that that was the more immediate. Issue, and when you. When you heard about the interview you got upset, didn't you. I was upset that director comey didn't coordinate, that with us and acted unilaterally. Yes i was, okay. Did comey go rogue. Then you could use that term yes. Finally. So wait a minute wait a minute wait a minute, thank you. Thank you. So here's the point i'm trying to make. Did i violate, the logan act when i called the israelis, up and suggested. That you need to come out against the iranian, nuclear deal because i think it's bad for the united states and israel even though that was the policy, of the obama administration. If you were doing that as a representative. Of the government. While the obama, administration. Was was. I'm not part of the obama administration. No i i understand that but. You know i think the logan act is a reflection. Of. Our country's, law my question, is, would a united, states senator, in your view violate, the logan, act if they reached out to foreign government to express, a contrary, view of foreign policy. If you were negotiating. On behalf, of the us government, you may. But senator i have to tell you the whole prism, here. This is all about the logan act is just not why did somebody, bring it up why did they mention the logan act if it's not about the logan.
Act. Because it as i was trying to say just a minute ago that's a reflection. Of our long-standing. Policy, in the united states that you have. One. Time. Is it the long-standing. Policy of the united states that incoming, administration. Can't talk to foreign, leaders about changing, policy. You can certainly talk to foreign leaders, about a potential, change in policy in the future but this wasn't any policy. This was undercutting. The sanctions, of you you had one administration. Leaving, in two weeks. And you had a new administration. Coming in, urging them don't escalate. And to anybody, who thinks that's a violation, of the logan act that is stunning, as hell. That means you can't really talk to anybody. You can't hit the ground running. So i just don't understand, where the logan, act came up, and i do believe. Very, deeply. That you were surprised. That the president, knew. About, the intercept, and you didn't. Who told the president, the united states. About the intercept, between kislyak. And flynn. I don't know but it doesn't surprise me have you ever asked, anybody. No because i that, i would expect that the president would know about a national security, but you didn't know. You were surprised, you didn't know. Who in the fbi. Went around, you to tell the president. I don't know that the fbi did you ever ask comey, coming out hey, have you been talking to the president, about this and not talking to me. Now what i asked him was why he knew about it and i didn't and he had what did he tell the president, about it or do you know. I don't know who told the president you never asked comey did you tell the president, about this investigation. No because senator my concern, was not that the president, knew, it was, not only entirely, appropriate, you seemed very surprised, and shocked that he knew and you didn't. Right because director, comey was part of the department of justice and i expect, so here's a question. They have told the nationals who who's the most likely, person to tell. The president, about the investigation. It wasn't about an investigation. About the intercept. About the intercept. It was, i can't tell you he was the most wouldn't it be comey, didn't he pull comey aside. I think this information, was shared with the intelligence, do you think it'd be good to ask comey, about that, mr chairman give her a chance to answer. I'm sorry, i didn't hear your last question i'm sorry do you believe the most logical, person to tell the president about the intercept was comey. He's in charge of the investigation. Well first. Director, comey wasn't talking to the president, about an investigation. About the intercept. About the intercept, i don't know if it was comey, or. The director of national intelligence, or who it was. Would the director, of national, intelligence. Be investigating. A violation, of the logan act. Because the president, when. The russians, so inexplicably. Reversed. Here's my question. Would the intelligence. Community, be investigating. A violation, of the logan act. Senator. Is that appropriate. Is that appropriate. Okay, i don't know how many times. I can say that that wasn't the prism, it was a, counter-intelligence. Threat now you keep saying there was no well he was dropped from the investigation. On january, the 4th. They talked about the logan act, this makes no sense that you didn't know and the president, did and i'm trying to find out, how the president knew and you didn't and you don't, you still can't tell me that is that fair to say. Senator you won't let me finish the sentence where please. My understanding. Is is that, the agents, had suggested.
That The specific, case on general flynn because. Before. They knew, about the conversations. With ambassador, kisly. Still don't get it but thank. You. Michael, flynn. Pleaded, guilty, to lying to the fbi. About his conversations. With russian, ambassador. Sergey. Kislyak. He also, lied, to vice president, pence. Who repeated, flynn's, lies, on national, television. You've explained. That this made, flynn, susceptible. To russian blackmail. The justice, department. Now says that the flynn case. Should be dismissed. Because his lies were not, material. To a legitimate. Investigation. Do you agree. Why, or why. Not. Thank you senator, feinstein, well. You know i would be hard-pressed. To be able to. To think of an interview, that would have been more material. At this point of the counterintelligence. Investigation. That the fbi, was conducting. To try to be able to get to the bottom, of. Whether there were any individuals. Um u.s citizens. Or and those associated, with the trump campaign. Who were working, with the russians. Um, so, the materiality. Of this was squarely. Right on point we had a national security, adviser, after the russians. Had attempted to put a thumb on the scale. For, on our election. Who rather than. When he spoke with the russian, ambassador. Telling him, stay, out of our elections, keep your your nose and your paws out of it, even if they want to reset, going forward but to, to rebuke, him and to let him know that we will not tolerate. Their country, trying to intervene, and pick our president not only did he not do that. He was making nice with him. And then on top of that, we have the beer that i stop you for a moment. The question, was. Um. Are you saying that the flynn case should be dismissed, because. The lies were not material. To a legitimate, investigation. No i think. Senator, they were absolutely. Material, to, a legitimate. Investigation. And this investigation. Then i guess i'm not understanding. What you're, saying. Could you try once again. This is sure i'll try it again. I was, was trying to lay out for you senator what the situation, was at the time that general flynn was interviewed. And that was we had. General flynn. Engaging. In discussions, with the russian ambassador, that were essentially, neutering, the american, sanctions. And that is a very curious, thing to be doing, particularly, when the russians have been acting to benefit, president trump. And then. He is covering it up, he's lying about it, so, the agents. Understandably. Needed to understand. What the relationship. Was here between, general flynn and the russians. And to try to find out from him. Who else might have been involved, in this and, had general flynn been honest. When the agents came to him and had he admitted what he had said. Then the agents would have found out what they actually what the mueller, investigation. Discovered, later. And that is is that general flynn, was not acting on his own and these were not conversations. That were just off the top of his head. But rather, he had been coordinating. All of this. With his deputy national security adviser, who was at mar-a-lago. With other transition, team members. And it was a very, deliberate. Planned. Um. Set of conversations. With the russian ambassador, to essentially, tell them, don't worry about it things are going to change once we're in place. Okay. When you testified. To this committee, on may 18. 2017. You said that michael flynn's, lies, to vice president, pence.
About His conversations. With russian, ambassador. Kislyak. Made flynn, vulnerable. To russian blackmail. And, quote, to state the obvious, you do not want your national, security, advisor. Compromised. By the russians, end quote. You also, said that flynn's. Underlying. Conduct. Was problematic. In and of itself. But you could not go further, because it was classified. Transcripts. Of flynn's calls with ambassador. Kislyak. Have now been declassified. And released. Publicly. So, why was, flynn's, underlying. Conduct. Problematic. That were imposed by the obama administration. On a foreign, adversary. Who was trying to intervene. In our election. General flynn recognized. Himself. That these discussions, were complemented. And he admitted, to fbi, agents later. When, he was when he was cooperating, with them. That he didn't even, write, down his conversations. With the russian ambassador. When he sent a text back, to ms mcfarland. Because he knew. That those discussions. Would be viewed, as interfering. With the foreign policy, of the obama administration. And that would be a problem. That's also why he lied about it and covered it up so. If general flynn, didn't think he was doing anything. Problematic. Then he wouldn't have had a need to cover. It. Is it possible, that flynn, lied, to the fbi. About his calls, with kislyak. To conceal, the fact that the trump administration. Did not plan, to hold russia, accountable. For interfering. In the election. That is certainly, part of what the fbi. Needed to be talking to general flynn about. Was to find out, why he had these discussions. Who else was part of them and what was behind it, but unfortunately. General flynn was not truthful, with them so they weren't able to do that, that again goes to the materiality. Inspector. Horowitz. Confirmed. That the crossfire. Hurricane, investigation. Was opened at the end of july. 2016. When the fbi. Was told by australia. A trusted, ally. And intelligence. Partner. That the trump campaign, adviser, george papadopoulos. Had advanced, knowledge. That russia, was planning to release, stolen, emails. To harm, clinton. And help trump. The fbi, learned this shortly, after wikileaks. Released, nearly, 20 000 emails. Stolen, by russia, from dsc. Dnc. Computers. Wasn't there some obligation. For the. Fbi, to investigate. To learn what russia was doing, and who was involved. Absolutely. It was really, startling. Information. You know the fbi, is part of the intel community, was already, working. Trying really hard to be able to get to the bottom, of russian interference, and to address issues like attribution. On the dnc. Um hack, and then. When they learned, from the friendly, foreign government. That. Someone, that, affiliated, with the russians, had actually, approached. A foreign, policy, adviser. Of the trump campaign. And had told him that the russians, had. Dirt, on hillary clinton in the form of thousands, of emails. That could be, released. Anonymously. And, wanted to know if the campaign, was interested, in this, when they found out this information, had come in in may. And then, it actually happened. The emails, were then, dumped, by wikileaks. In july. This was something, that i think. Everyone, would recognize, that you that you have to get to the bottom of. This may, the justice, department. Move to dismiss. The case against michael flynn. Who pleaded, guilty, to lying to the fbi. The lead prosecutor. Resigned. From flynn's. And, district, court judge emmett, sullivan, took the unusual. Step. Of appointing, an outside, lawyer. Former judge john gleason. To oppose. The department's. Motion. According, to judge gleason. The justice, department's. Effort to dismiss. Flynn's, case. Is highly, irregular. And quote, a gross, abuse, of prosecutorial. Power, end quote. In order, to quote. Benefit, a political. Ally. Of president, trump. Do you agree. That the department's. Motion, to dismiss, flynn's, case. Is highly, irregular. If so, how. It is highly, a regular, senator you know i was a prosecutor, at the department of justice for almost 30 years. And i've certainly, never seen a pleading, like this. And as i think i've already discussed some with senator graham, and with you. From my perspective. There's. No issue with respect, to the materiality. Here. Um nor to the government's, ability to be able to prove falsity. Not only, because you could look at the transcripts, and see the black and white there in terms of it being false. But in fact general flynn, had twice, pled guilty, and sworn, that he was guilty. Thank you mr chairman. Thank you and senator the press.
Miss Yates, uh, thank you for your public, service. You approved the first, and second, carter page fisa, applications. Prior, to approving. Did you review, each application. In its entirety. Yes. I did senator, yes, and do i need to speak more loudly, i'm sorry to interrupt but um. Okay, you told me you did, review them in their entirety. Okay. It's it's let me let me, to one it's possible, that there's some boilerplate. Language that's in every fisa. That i might not have reviewed, again. But i certainly, reviewed, all of the, factual, information, in the box. Okay. Uh. Number two, when you were interviewed, by ig, horowitz's. Office, about your decision. To approve the first carter page fisa, application. You stated, the following, about, steel's. Research. Quote. While certainly. There was, an implication. That he was doing, opposition. Research. It's got to be for somebody. I mean, he's been hired, by someone. My understanding. Was. That the fbi, didn't know, who, ended quote. The inspector, general, said, the steele, dossier. Was. Central, and essential. To the carter page, fisa. If, it was clear to you, at the time. That steele, was conducting, opposition. Research, for someone. Why didn't you act responsibly. To at least have an elementary, understanding. Of the extreme, conflicts. Involved, regarding, his employment, before, approving. The first, fisa, application. Senator, i understand, that even the fbi. Didn't know, who had um, employed. Steel, at the time of the first, visa. But we were concerned. Because, for the reasons that i had expressed, to the inspector, general. Logic, would tell you, that if somebody is out there doing opposition, research, there's, a limited, number of folks that you might expect that to be. But the fbi, didn't, know, my understanding, is at that point, that it was the dnc, or hillary, clinton. And so lawyers in the national security, division had worked and insisted. That there at least be something in the fisa. That laid out what they speculated. And it's a very unusual, thing to include, speculation. And an affidavit, but here they felt like it was really important. To flag, that for the fisa court, and to let them know even though. The fbi, didn't, know that it was being paid for by the dnc. That there certainly was a possibility. Of that. In, april, 2016. President. Trump, obama, said, quote. I don't talk to the fbi. Directors. About pending, investigation. End of quote. In the 302. Of your interview with the fbi. You said that in your january, 5th 2017. Meeting, with obama and comey. There was a discussion, about phlegm. Flynn, and potential, violations. Of a local act logan act. According, to declassified. Notes summarizing. That meeting. President, obama, said to, comey, quote. Make sure you look at things and have the right people, on it, end of quote, how can you square, obama's. April, 2016. Statement. With the january, 5th, 2017. Meeting. With comey. And obama. Yes senator. As i mentioned in my opening statement. That meeting was not about, an investigation. At all. And i can tell you that that is something that would have crossed, the line and if, president obama, or vice president biden, or. National security adviser, rice. Was in any way trying to influence, an investigation. Uh, that would have set off alarms, for me. This was not about, that this was about the national, security, implications. Of continuing. To share sensitive, information. With general flynn, given what they had learned, about his back channel discussion. With the russian ambassador. To neuter the sanctions. Your, january, 5th, 2017. Meeting. With president obama, had two parts. The first part, included, biden. Comey. Brennan, clapper, and rice. The second part. Was just you comey and the president. In either meeting. Did crossfire. Hurricane, or the steele dossier. Ever come up. Yesterday. Uh. Did you or one of your colleagues. Ever discuss, crossfire, hurricane. Or the sealed dossier. With president obama, or vice, president. Biden. I know i certainly didn't i can't imagine, any of my colleagues did, okay i have eight seconds, left. Thanks to attorney, general barr material, relating, to flynn.
Has Finally been released, those records, show the fbi, planned. To close the flynn case, in early january, 2017. Until, strzok. Interceded. That the fbi. Deliberately. Set flynn, up to prosecute, him. Or get him fired. And that there was no, derogatory. Information. On flynn. When you were deputy, attorney, general, and acting attorney, general. Were you aware, of this information. Not aware, that their they had planned to, close. The specific, counterintelligence. Investigation. On general flynn, my understanding. Is is that was prior to the time they knew anything, about these calls with the russian ambassador. And i was operating, under the impression. That this interview, of, general flynn. Was in the context, of the broader, crossfire. Hurricane. Investigation. That being. Trying to discern. What the connections. Were between the trump campaign. And the russians. Okay, thank you mrs yates. Why thank you mr chairman. Mrs yates, it's good to see you again. Uh. You know we keep talking, about. General flynn whether he lied or not of course. President trump said he did lie. To. Among others to vice president. Pence and that's why he had to fire him. But and. The last time you testified, before his committee in may 2017. I asked about your decision, as, acting attorney general to notify, white house counsel don mcgahn. That then national security, advisor, michael. Had been lying to multiple. Trump officials, including. The vice president. About his conversations. With the russian ambassador. You supported, informing, the white house even though some others did not at the time. You stated, the need to notify, the administration. Became clear as the white house issued increasingly. Specific. Emphatic, denials, that flynn had discussed, sanctions. With the russian, ambassador, which of course increased. Mr flynn's. Vulnerability. To blackmail. Do you believe general flynn was effectively, compromised. Well i certainly believe that and believe now that there was a risk, of that compromise. And that's why it was so important. To get this information, to the white house. So that they could act. And, the conversations. Themselves. Were concerning, and that was a proper basis to be part of the counterintelligence. Investigation. But you have to balance. The investigation. Also, with the need to address. The, the. Compromised, threat, that presented, itself, most urgently, and in, doing that balancing. I thought that we needed to go tell, the white house white house right away. So that they could act and so, that others, who presumably. Did not know, that the information, they were providing, to the american people was false. So they would quit doing that. And i think you were probably not surprised, when, president, trump removed. Uh. General flynn. But do you believe that by encouraging, russia, to not react to u.s, sanctions. Flynn, undercut, our nation's, response. To. Russia's, attack, on our elections. I do i think that's one of the concerns. Senator is as i mentioned. The purpose of the sanctions, was both to punish. And deter. And when general flynn, was essentially, saying. Never mind, on those sanctions, we're just going to move forward. Um, that certainly doesn't send the message to the russians that we want them to stay out of our elections. I undercut, our efforts. It certainly does. Thank you. Now. Some of, mr flynn's staunchest, offenders, have argued that because the fbi, suspected, flynn may continue to lie about his conversations. With the russian ambassador. He was entrapped, when he was interviewed by the fbi. In your view is it ever entrapment. For investigators.
To Give an individual, an opportunity. To tell the truth. About an issue relevant, to their investigation. No it's not and actually. Here the agents, even, took that a step, further. They not only. Asked general flynn, open-ended. Questions, to give him an opportunity. To tell them the truth, about what had happened. In his conversations. With the russian ambassador. When he indicated. When he for example at the beginning. Gave nothing but innocuous. Points that had come up and nothing at all about sanctions. Or about the united nations, vote. They then, tried to to help trigger, his memory, form and used. Reminded, him of specific, things sometimes, even using, the exact, language. He had used in the cause. You know if you're, trying to, set somebody up to lie which i don't really know how you set somebody up to lie. You don't generally try to help them out like that. Yeah you either lie or you don't lie. Last week the attorney, general. Claimed the flynn interview, was untethered, to any legitimate. Investigation. One do you agree with that. And do you believe a legitimate. Predicate, existed, to investigate. Interview, flynn in january. Given what you'd learned about his december, calls with the russian ambassador. And his subsequent. Misrepresentations. Of those calls. Absolutely, senator, while i believe that the most urgent, thing was to notify, the white house. Interviewing. General flynn, was really, right at the core. Of. The fbi's, investigation. At this point to try to discern. What are the ties, between, the trump administration. And the russians. Thank you. And the inspector, general informed this committee the only surveillance, targeting, any trump. Campaign, official, involved, carter, page. I will submit some questions in writing about that, but can you speak to whether the government, was specifically. Targeting, flynn. With surveillance, when it intercepted, his calls. With the russian ambassador. No the, the surveillance. Was not of general flynn. I am still not permitted to tell you what it was in fact we checked with the department of justice. Just a couple of days ago before i testified, because i would like to be able to specifically, tell you what it was. But there was no surveillance. Of generals. Thank you very much i appreciate, that thank you mr chairman, thank you, sir, very quickly for alternative, senator, um, cornyn, let me make sure i understand this. The interview with general flynn. Were you investigating. A policy, difference, between, the trump. Administration. And the obama administration. No senator we aren't investigating, a policy, difference. We weren't investigating, their crime, were you. We were, investigating. A counterintelligence. Threat, okay is it a counterintelligence. Investigation. Based on a policy, difference. It's a counter-intelligence. Investigation. Based on the russian, systematic. Challenge. This is very important. Your beef with flynn, was he was undercutting, obama, policy. Is that what you were worried about. Well what we were worried about was that he was undercutting, obama, policy. And then he was covering, it up no. He hadn't even talked, to the fbi. You sent the fbi. Over. Weren't you under. And there was no, leak of anything. So isn't it the fact you're really investigating. A policy, difference. No senator, it's not accurate, there was a cover-up, before this. In fact that's what prompted, my concerns, was that he was providing, false information. To the vice president. Did you know about that. When did you know about that. That preceded the senator that's why i wanted to go to the white house. Why didn't you go to the white house and say is this your policy, position. The concern, was not about, the policy. Difference here senator. The concern, was about him, undercutting, the obama, administration. And then covering, it up, thank you. Mr chairman, insofar, as you followed up on my. Question that time i should note. That. She is, said before they're following a, counterintelligence. Threat, which was closed on january, the 4th. Senator i'm sorry that's just not accurate, it was not closed on january. Recommended, to be closed on january, the 4th the day before the meeting. And the only. Problem, here is that you didn't like flynn, changing, the policy, or talking about changing the policy. That he had every right to do that, and what we're doing here is we're criminalizing. Policy, differences. That's why flynn got prosecuted, because they hate his guts. Senator cornyn.
Ms Yates. Let me, change the subject, a little bit. Based on your. Long and distinguished, service. With the department, of justice. Are you aware of any precedent. For. Both, of the major, party, nominees. For president of the united states being investigated. Either for a crime or a counterintelligence. Investigation. In the run-up, to. A, presidential, election. No i'm not. Me either. Let me ask you. During the. Investigation. Of. Hillary, clinton. Over her email, server. James comey the fbi, director. Had a press conference, as you know on july, the 5th. Where he. Talked about, the investigation. Talked about derogatory. Information. Collected, during that investigation. But. Yet said no reasonable, prosecutor, would. Would prosecute, that case, did you know before july the 5th. 2016. That he was going to do that. No i didn't. Did you know when he. Reopened. The case, after anthony, weiner's. Computer. Was. Was. Looked at, uh, did you know he was going to reopen. The case. Yes beforehand. It was contin, i can't tell you and. Kendall synergy that was you know more than four years ago now and i didn't go back and try to, review any of that i know i knew about it i can't tell you whether it was beforehand. Or contemporaneously. Would you agree with me it was highly. Director comey's. Conduct, was highly irregular. I don't know how to characterize, his conduct senator. You don't know how to characterize, it did it. Um, he was a the fbi director is a direct report, to the deputy attorney general correct. That's. Correct. So from the time crossfire. Hurricane. Was opened on july the 31st. Until you signed. The first, fisa, application, on october, the 21st, did director, comey. Keep you apprised, of what the investigation. Showed. We had. Interactions. I met with the fbi, three times a week, on national security, matters. And also met with the national security, division. I certainly was provided with some information, but i will tell you i don't think that, the fbi, was providing, us with as much information. As they should have now that i i know more. About the investigation. And. I would agree, with inspector general horowitz's, recommendation. That in matters, like this. Um that there should be both consultation. With department, leadership. As well as more thorough briefings. Thank you i guess you would you, would also agree that, director, comey, should have consulted, with you. And the attorney general. Um. In the run, during the. His dealings, with the hillary clinton. Investigation. Before making those kind of public. Comments, those, that violates, the rules and norms of the department of justice wouldn't you agree. I certainly think that he should have consulted, with us yes. He said he thought that. Loretta lynch had a conflict, of interest, because, of the tarmac, meeting between, president, clinton.
And, The attorney general during the. Course of the, hillary clinton email investigation. But that would not have prevented, him from consulting, with you. Did he do so. Well did he consult, with me on what precisely, i want to make sure i'm as accurate as possible here did he did he consult, with you on the hillary, clinton. Investigation. And his intentions, to go public. With the investigation. And and, um usurp, the the role of the department of justice when it comes to whether to charge or not charge somebody with a crime, did he talk to you about that ahead of time. I. We did not have a substantive, discussion about it. No. Does that. Surprise, you. I mean you're the direct. You're the direct supervisor. Of the fbi, director. If he didn't consult, with you or tell you what he was doing or you didn't, he didn't respond to your inquiries, about it wouldn't that strike you as, highly unusual. It's not ideal. Not ideal, well that's. Quite an understatement. But it is an understatement. Okay we'll agree on that. So on, um, may the 9th, 2017. Rod rosenstein. The your successor. As deputy attorney general wrote a memo. With regard to director, comey's, activities. During which, he. Said that director comey did violate the norms and rules of the department, of justice. And. He said since he had showed no remorse. And, was likely to repeat. That conduct, again. That he recommended, his dismissal, did you agree with rod rosenstein's. Analysis, in that memo. Senator, i'm not going to weigh in on what a successor, of mine a decision. You're not going to answer my question. Well i just don't think it's appropriate, for me to weigh in on that so, well i'm not asking you to i'm not asking you to weigh your initiates, i'm asking you to answer, a question. About. The highest, levels, of the department, of justice, and whether this is the new norm. Or whether. Director comey violated, those norms, and. His dismissal, was justified. On that basis. You have no opinion about that. Senator, i'm not going to ran on on, whether. Deputy attorney general rosenstein's.
Memo, Was was accurate, or not but, i will say that i was concerned, at the time regardless. Of how out of bounds director comey may have been in the actions that he took. On the clinton case, i was concerned, that that was used, as, centrifuge. Or the real reason to fire. Well it strikes me the director comey was out of control. And as his direct supervisor. I, assumed that you would be concerned, about that and you might have called him to task, for that and ask him to change his, conduct. Um. Senator durbin. Mrs yates. Welcome back. And. And let me congratulate. You. Before i go any further. Today marks the second time during the trump administration, that you've testified, before this committee. That, sum of, appearances. Equals the total number of times that attorney general sessions. Acting attorney general whitaker, and attorney general barr have appeared before this committee in their official, capacity. Combined. So congratulations. We can't seem to bring the attorney general here but former attorney generals, are always welcome thank you very much for being here. I'd like to. Ask for a moment. For a reflection, on michael flynn. And. Ask about the following. Flynn apparently, had suspicious, contacts. With russia starting at least in 2015. When he sat next to, vladimir, putin at a dinner in moscow. Flynn accepted payments from multiple, russian, entities. Like rt. Kaspersky. Labs. The volga, airlines. And he failed to report these payments on his financial, disclosure, forms when he became, national, security, adviser, to president, trump. According to the mueller report during the 2016. Campaign, flynn, worked with individuals, who claimed to be in contact. With russian-affiliated. Hackers in an effort to obtain. Hillary clinton's, emails. Flynn also signed a contract, to work with the turkish government during the campaign. And he lied about his work for turkey, on his foreign affairs registration. Act filings. In december, of 2016. Flynn had four ph