Why Retired General Michael Flynn Will Get No Immunity
Just when you think that the Trump administration could not get any more bizarre than it has already been in less than 100 days of governance, retired Army General Michael Flynn comes out of nowhere to stir up the witches’ brew. As a former National Security Advisor to United States President Donald Trump, Flynn’s post did not last very long. He was expected to bring his years of experience in command of combat troops and special operations units to a White House that has greatly suffered in this regard. Apparently, Flynn had conversations with the Russian Embassy that may have involved easing American sanctions against that country. When Congress learned that Flynn was not forthcoming about these conversations—which may have actually been illegal negotiations that date back to a time before Trump was elected—he suddenly resigned his post and no one heard from him until the last week of March.
Making an announcement of behalf of Flynn, his attorney explained that the retired and highly-decorated soldier would be willing to provide testimony to Congress in connection with the ongoing investigation into alleged collusion between the Kremlin and members of the Trump campaign. In exchange for this testimony, Flynn requested immunity, which has been summarily declined by Congressional investigators. To be clear, no one knows what Flynn has to offer in exchange for immunity, and no one knows what he should be exempt from. Weeks before Flynn’s bizarre immunity request, FBI Director Michael Comey testified before Congress and announced that his agency was investigating potential links between Russian operatives and the Trump campaign. Everyone knows that the FBI deals with criminal investigations; this fact is what makes the Flynn offer so strange because his name had not come up prominently until he put himself out there.
Flynn’s line of work after his retirement from the Army has caused him to have contact with Russian operatives; the FBI and Congress now would like to know more about the level of contact he has had, particularly during his time in the Trump campaign. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, a senior Member of Congress who represents South Carolina, is puzzled by Flynn’s recent behavior. He seems to be taking advice from President Trump, who is the last person Flynn should be listening to. Senator Graham is now very suspicious about the entire affair, and he is pushing for details to be revealed to the American public.
Once again, the problem with Flynn is that he is in urgent need of expert criminal defense attorneys who can negotiate with prosecutors should the retired general ever be charged. Should Flynn be called up to testify before Congress, there is no amount of immunity that could protect him. Flynn has already heeded the call to honorably serve his country in the Armed Forces, and he will have to heed the call to answer to Congress. With regard to potential criminal charges, he may be able to negotiate with prosecutors if the case is structured as a conspiracy. In that case, he should forget about Trump and pay close attention to what his criminal defense attorney recommends.