Former CIA head to answer questions about Russian meddling

Former national security adviser Michael Flynn invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination Monday in refusing to hand over documents to the Senate.

Flynn's decision to decline the subpoena does not come as a surprise to Senate intelligence leaders, as Flynn's lawyer also told the panel last month he would not provide documents in response to an April request.

The committee wanted Flynn to produce any records of conversations he had with Russian officials between June 16, 2015, and January 20, 2017, and to compile a list of any contacts he had with Russian officials.

In February, Trump asked James Comey, then the FBI director, to end the bureau's investigation into Flynn, a request some legal specialists have said amounts to obstruction of justice.

The former adviser is party to three simultaneous US investigations into the Russian Federation affair, at the Justice Department and in both chambers of Congress.

Before Brennan answers House lawmakers' questions in open and closed sessions, the Senate Armed Services Committee was hearing from Trump's top intelligence official, Dan Coats, and the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency regarding national security threats. Trump's national security leadership has said repeatedly that Russian Federation is among the top threats because of its cyber capabilities.

Investigators on the House intelligence committee are scheduled Tuesday to grill former CIA Director John Brennan on the extent of Russia's meddling in the 2016 elections and possible ties to the campaign of President Donald Trump.

The refusal is especially egregious in light of new allegations from House Democrats that Flynn lied to executive-branch investigators who, in 2016, interviewed him as part of his security clearance renewal.

"The actual source of the funds for General Flynn's trip was not a USA company, but the Russian media propaganda arm, RT", said a statement from Rep. Elijah Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, referring to the Russian state media outlet, Russia Today. Cummings asked the committee's chairman, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, to subpoena the White House for documents related to Flynn.

But if congressional committees move to grant Flynn immunity, they would probably have to enter into discussions with the special counsel, Robert Mueller, to determine whether that could impede the FBI's case. According to Cummings, Flynn told investigators that he had only "insubstantial contact" with foreign nationals over the previous seven years, and he did not detail the names of any foreign officials he had met.

"The subpoena seeks to compel General Flynn to offer testimony through the act of producing documents that may or may not exist", argued Kelner of Covington & Burling.

Flynn was sacked by Trump February 13, allegedly for lying to Vice President Mike Pence about the content of his telephone discussion with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak in late December 2016.

When asked by CNN whether his panel would hold Flynn in contempt, Ranking Democrat, Sen.

Two other Trump associates figuring in the Russian inquiries, former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and sometimes-adviser Roger Stone, were said to have cooperated with subpoenas from the senate committee.

"If you're innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?".

The short-term national security adviser who lied about his communications with Russian Federation during Trump's transition has just stalled his own investigation by announcing he will plead the fifth amendment.

Israel was reportedly the source of that sensitive intelligence.

Rubio said White House officials had told him they had no transcripts nor notes of Trump's meeting with Russian officials but "apparently someone has discussed them, or leaked them". The Washington Post, meanwhile, said a senior Trump adviser is now being considered a "person of interest" in the law enforcement investigation into whether Trump's campaign coordinated with Russian Federation to sway the election.

"The investigation", she vowed in a statement, "will go on".

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