Republicans Try to Smear Obama National Security Adviser Susan Rice Over Email About Michael Flynn Contacting Russia
Republicans are trying to smear President Obama’s National Security Advisor Susan Rice whose Jan. 20, 2019 email described an Obama White House meeting on Jan. 5 about Michael Flynn’s contacts with the Russian Ambassador Kislyak in December 2016.
Flynn later pleaded guilty, twice, in 2019 to lying to the FBI about his conversations with the Russian ambassador. Flynn is now trying to retract his guilty pleas, while the Trump administration declassifies Obama-era documents to push their imaginary “Obamagate” conspiracy in which Obama supposedly targeted Trump illegally with help of the FBI.
POLITICO reports that Rice’s Jan. 5 “email says that then-FBI Director James Comey worried about sharing classified information with the Trump team due to incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn’s frequent conversations with the Russian ambassador, but that Comey had no knowledge of Flynn sharing classified information.”
Rice’s Jan. 5 email also said Obama wanted to be sure “every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities ‘by the book.’”
Rice’s email debunked the Trump administration’s “Obamagate” conspiracy:
The president stressed that he is not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective. He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.
Rice also described then-FBI director James Comey’s part in the Jan. 5 meeting:
Director Comey affirmed that he is proceeding ‘by the book’ as it relates to law enforcement. rom a national security perspective, Comey said he does have some concerns that incoming NSA Flynn is speaking frequently with Russian Ambassador Kislyak. Comey said that could be an issue as it relates to sharing sensitive information.
President Obama asked if Comey was saying that the NSC should not pass sensitive information related to Russia to Flynn. Comey replied ‘potentially.’ He added that he has no indication thus far that Flynn has passed classified information to Kislyak, but he noted that ‘the level of communication is unusual.’
The President asked Comey to inform him if anything changes in the next few weeks that should affect how we share classified information with the incoming team. Comey said that he would.
Rice’s spokesperson noted that Rice spent 12 hours with her replacement, Flynn and shared over 100 separate briefing memos:
Statement from Rice spokesperson Erin Pelton on the declassified Susan Rice email: “Ambassador Rice briefed Michael Flynn for over 12 hours, on four separate occasions and led the National Security Council in preparing and delivering to him over 100 separate briefing memos.” pic.twitter.com/0G6dctvVum— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) May 19, 2020
Not surprisingly, Republicans claimed the email contained something somewhere that was somehow horribly damning.
#HANNITY: Susan Rice’s email declassified, Flynn’s attorney files appeal & more on #Obamagate unmasking scandal. Great guests: @SidneyPowell1 , @GreggJarrett, @SarahHuckabee, @AriFleischer, @MercedesSchlapp, @SenTomCotton, @GeraldoRivera Watch tonight!— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) May 20, 2020
BREAKING:— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) May 19, 2020
A declassified Susan Rice email shows Comey suggested “sensitive information related to Russia” be withheld from Michael Flynn
Obama emphasized everything surrounding Flynn needs to be done “by the book”
The attacks on Flynn began in the Oval Office
Democrats will try to spin the contents of Susan Rice’s email. But there is one fact that cannot be denied: multiple officials were meeting with then-President Obama about spying on the incoming administration.— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) May 20, 2020
The only case close to this in our history is Watergate.
(Sources: POLITICO, Twitter, Photo Credit: PBS)