Last night, Rachel Maddow raised the unanswered questions following Flynn’s resignation and asked how we’ll ever get them answered by the government in place, which includes an FBI director who might possibly be involved, an attorney general who might possibly be involved, and a Chairman of the House Intel Committee, who was part of Trump’s transition team.
Maddow started by offering an example of how Vladimir Putin has successfully silenced critics and opponents, offering a terrifying counterpoint to what’s going on here in the U.S.
Maddow tells the story of the head of the Ethics Committee in Russia’s parliament, who made $75,000 a year but owned several homes, nearly a dozen cars, and many large parcels of land. Rather than reveal how he afforded all these things, the official chose to resign when his wealth was exposed on a blog. The blogger who exposed him, Alexei, Navalny, became an activist figure in Russian politics, and said he would run against Putin next year when Putin’s term is up.
“At one level that makes us all surprised to learn that he’s still alive.”
She noted that just last week, Putin found a way to effectively disqualify Navalny from running against him:
“They found a remote regional court hundreds of miles from Moscow and they got that court to convict Navalny in some obscure scheme involving timber futures.”
And then she turned to our own situation, raising important questions about the Trump-Flynn-Russia connections that haven’t yet been answered:
How did Michael Flynn get named National Security Advisor when he was already under investigation by the FBI and the Army?
Did Flynn lie to the FBI during his first days as NSA about his conversations with Russia, which would be a felony?
Has Attorney General Jeff Sessions interfered with the FBI investigation of Flynn or the investigation of the Trump campaign and its contacts with Russia in any way? Because acting Attorney General Sally Yates told White House counsel at the end of January that Flynn had contacts with the Russian government that were undermining Obama sanctions and was vulnerable to blackmail.
Why did the White House take no action for weeks and continue to allow Michael Flynn to have unobscured and unilateral access to the president?
Did Flynn help the Russians interfere in U.S. elections? Will that charge be investigated? Will it be prosecuted if it turns out to be true?
Maddow then noted how the top Trump officials are either saying “there’s nothing to see here” or were so embedded in Trump’s transition team at national security levels that they have no motivation to investigate the Trump transition and can’t in any way do it fairly.
“So. Rule of Law. The National Security Advisor is out. No National Security Advisor has ever been forced out in 24 days. No National Security Advisor has ever been forced out in circumstances this scandalous and I’m including the ones who were convicted or pled guilty to felonies. The White House’s behavior and the president’s behavior around this ouster is bizarre and unexplained, and in some cases it’s inexplicable. The allegations here about national security risks and the undermining of the U.S. government by a foreign power – these are as serious as anything that has ever been alleged against any president not just in modern times but ever. And the question tonight is where is the rule of law? What’s the remedy for that? Where are we thinking the investigation is going to come from here?”
Maddow then talks to Rep. Adam Schiff about whether Americans can get an impartial Trump inquiry. Will our government even try to get to the bottom of it?