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May 9, 2017

Yates testifies she warned White House about Gen. Flynn

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  • Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper addressed a Senate hearing on Monday over the investigation into the Trump administration’s relationship with Russia and the warnings the White House received about Gen. Michael Flynn.
  • Flynn served as national security advisor for 24 days before he was forced to resign after information surfaced he had lied to Vice President Mike Pence about the exchange Flynn had with Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak.
  • The conversation created a “compromise situation” that could lead Flynn to be blackmailed by Russia, Yates said. She said she warned the Trump administration so that they could take the appropriate action. Yates was fired from her job a few days later and Flynn was forced out 18 days later.
  • Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley asked Clapper and Yates if they had ever acted as an anonymous source in a news report about matters relating to Mr. Trump, his associates and Russia’s attempt to meddle in the election, which President Trump also tweeted about on Tuesday. Both responded they had not.

  1. Essential question: What factors need to be in place for a government to maintain its national security?
  2. What is the purpose of a Senate hearing? Why did the Senate call for a hearing in this particular situation?
  3. What do you know about the relationship between the U.S. and Russia? Why are U.S. senators concerned about how members of the Trump campaign dealt with Russia?
  4. Do you think the Trump administration appropriately handled the concerns about Gen. Flynn that then acting attorney general Yates had shared? Why or why not?
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