President Trump's national security advisor Retired Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn is being assailed by all sides about his connections to Russia, and it doesn't help that he had to apologize to Vice President Mike Pence Monday morning.
According to USA Today, Mike Flynn called the Vice President to apologize for misleading him about denying that he spoke to the Russians about sanctions before Trump's election.
In January, the Vice President defended Mike Flynn from the accusations that he had spoken with Russian officials about U.S. sanctions before the election. “They did not discuss anything having to do with the United States’ decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia,” Pence told CBS’ “Face the Nation."
Later Flynn admitted that he might have spoken about sanctions on the call with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, leading many to conclude that he misled Pence and putting his troubled position in the administration in even more peril. Flynn now says he doesn't remember if he spoke about sanctions with Kislyak.
The Washington Post reported Saturday that nine former and current officials remembered Flynn explicitly referring to the sanctions that Obama strengthened about the time of the call to Kislyak.
All of those officials said Flynn’s references to the election-related sanctions were explicit. Two of those officials went further, saying that Flynn urged Russia not to overreact to the penalties being imposed by President Barack Obama, making clear that the two sides would be in position to review the matter after Trump was sworn in as president.
“Kislyak was left with the impression that the sanctions would be revisited at a later time,” said a former official.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has called for Flynn's resignation Sunday, while Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) demanded that the transcript of the Flynn exchange be released.
Monday Trump's top advisor Kellyanne Conway assured MSNBC's Steve Kornacki that the reports were overblown. "Yes, General Flynn does enjoy the full confidence of the president," she claimed in defiance of the "personnel crisis" being reported in the media.
— NBC Nightly News (@NBCNightlyNews) February 13, 2017
Very soon after, her assurances were undermined by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer admitting that Trump was "evaluating the situation," which some speculated as being an indication that Flynn will be fired from his position.
— The Situation Room (@CNNSitRoom) February 13, 2017
It remains to be seen if the accusations of Russian ties that are haranguing Mike Flynn will lead to his resignation, in what would be a striking repetition of the resignation of Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort.