Hours before former acting Attorney General Sally Yates was due to testify before a Senate subcommittee investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, President Trump offered what amounted to a prebuttal of sorts on Twitter.
“Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel,” Trump tweeted Monday.
Yates — who was fired by Trump in January after refusing to comply with his controversial executive order on immigration — is expected to talk to the committee about what led to the ouster of Michael Flynn, Trump’s first national security adviser. Flynn resigned after media reports revealed that he had discussed U.S.-imposed sanctions on Russia during the transition, and had misled Trump and Vice President Mike Pence about those discussions.
Ask Sally Yates, under oath, if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. Counsel.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 8, 2017
According to the Associated Press, Yates “is likely to testify Monday that she warned White House counsel Don McGahn on Jan. 26 that Flynn’s contacts — and the discrepancies between what the White House said happened on the calls and what actually occurred — had left him in a compromised position.”
Yet Flynn’s resignation did not come until Feb. 13 — nearly three weeks after Yates’ warning and three days after the Washington Post disclosed the conversations, information that it attributed to nine anonymous current and former officials “who had access to reports from U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies that routinely monitor the communications of Russian diplomats.”
On CNN, Gen. Michael Hayden, former CIA and National Security Agency director, predicted that the administration probably “won’t be enthusiastic” about the details that emerge.
Yates’ testimony, Hayden said, will describe “the…