President Trump granted a pardon to the former national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, on Wednesday, Nov. 25, ending the legal saga that commenced during the 2016 election with the Crossfire Hurricane investigation led by the FBI.
“It is my Great Honor to announce that General Michael T. Flynn has been granted a Full Pardon. Congratulations to @GenFlynn and his wonderful family. I know you will now have a truly fantastic Thanksgiving!” President Trump said in a tweet.
It is my Great Honor to announce that General Michael T. Flynn has been granted a Full Pardon. Congratulations to @GenFlynn and his wonderful family, I know you will now have a truly fantastic Thanksgiving!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 25, 2020
After pleading guilty to lying to the FBI during the investigation about dialogue with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during President Trump’s transition period in 2016, Flynn withdrew his guilty plea before sentencing in January 2017, telling the court he was “innocent of this crime.”
The Department of Justice decided to drop the case against Flynn in May. However, presiding District Judge Emmet Sullivan hasn’t commented on the pardon.
Sullivan appointed retired New York judge John Gleeson, an appointee of former President Bill Clinton, to present arguments in opposition to the DOJ’s decision and look at charging Flynn with perjury contempt.
According to the Washington Examiner, Flynn’s lawyers, led by Sidney Powell since June, argued in October that Sullivan’s “increasingly hostile and unprecedented words and deeds in what has become his own prosecution of General Flynn mandate his disqualification.”
In a statement, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), furiously argued the pardon is “undeserved, unprincipled, and one more stain on President Trump’s rapidly diminishing legacy.”
“President Trump dangled this pardon to encourage Flynn to backtrack on his pledge to cooperate with federal investigators—cooperation that might have exposed the president’s own wrongdoing. And it worked,” Nadler said.
“Flynn broke his deal, recanted his plea, received the backing of the attorney general over the objections of career prosecutors, and now has secured a pardon from the president of the United States,” Nadler said.
A statement from the White House regarding Flynn’s pardon read, “General Flynn should not require a pardon. He is an innocent man. Even the FBI agents who interviewed General Flynn did not think he was lying. Multiple investigations have produced evidence establishing that General Flynn was the victim of partisan government officials engaged in a coordinated attempt to subvert the election of 2016. These individuals sought to prevent Donald Trump from being elected to the Presidency, to block him from assuming that office upon his election, to remove him from office after his inauguration, and to undermine his administration at every turn.”
Sidney Powell spoke to Lou Dobbs after Flynn’s pardon was announced, “It is really bittersweet. Because if the Justice Department had worked properly, we would not have had to have gotten this pardon. But we certainly appreciate President Trump giving it to General Flynn because this has gone on far too long. We now know Judge Sullivan was just a political ploy. He’s made a political game out of all of this. And it’s just one of the most egregious injustices I’ve witnessed in American history.”