President Donald Trump, in his first comment on Michael Flynn's guilty plea to lying to the FBI, said there was "absolutely no collusion" between his campaign and Russia. (Reuters)
In his first public comments about Michael Flynn pleading guilty on Friday to lying to the FBI about his interactions with a Russian official, President Trump reiterated on Saturday that his campaign did not collude with Russia during last year's presidential election. .  "What has been demonstrated is not collusion, no collusion, there has been absolutely nothing, there has been no collusion, we are very happy," Trump told reporters on Saturday morning before leaving for a fundraising trip. funds to New York.
The president's comments come a day after his former national security adviser pleaded guilty to lying about his contacts with the then Russian ambbadador, Sergey Kislyak. In a statement Friday, Flynn said he had agreed to cooperate with the team of special lawyer Robert S. Mueller III in his ongoing investigation into the Kremlin's attempts to influence the 2016 elections, including possible coordination with the Trump campaign. .
[Michael Flynn pleads guilty to lying to FBI on contacts with Russian ambbadador]
The plea agreement marks the first time that Mueller's investigation has incriminated someone who worked in the White House and who was personally close to Trump . Unlike the previous charges against Trump's top campaign advisors, Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, they are actually actions taken on behalf of Trump. Another low-level campaign badistant, foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos, has also pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. The key question now is what Flynn knows could incriminate others and what he could have offered in exchange for such a mild palliation treatment.
Flynn, who was expelled from the White House after less than a month at work, admitted that he lied to the FBI about the conversations he had with Kislyak in December. Court records say Flynn contacted the Russian ambbadador on December 22 about the Trump administration's opposition to a UN resolution against Israeli settlements. Flynn called Kislyak again on December 29 to ask Russia not to escalate a dispute over sanctions imposed the previous day by the Obama administration, according to court documents.
Flynn admitted that he was not truthful when the FBI asked him on January 24. about these interactions, and that officials of the president's transition team, including a "very important member", knew that he had spoken with the Russian ambbadador, the Washington Post reported.
That unnamed member told Flynn that they contacted foreign government officials, including Russia, about the UN resolution and told him that blocking it was Trump's top priority, according to court records. People familiar with the matter told The Post that the officer is the president's son-in-law and the White House's top adviser, Jared Kushner.
Flynn also admitted having spoken with another member of the transition team before speaking with Kislyak about US sanctions. UU On December 29, according to court records. That senior official is also not identified in the court records, but the people familiar with the matter told The Post that it is K.T. McFarland, now nominated for the United States Ambbadador in Singapore.
Trump said Saturday he does not care what Flynn would reveal as part of his agreement with Mueller's team. When asked if he supports his former national security adviser, Trump said: "We'll see what happens." Trump had previously pleaded for Flynn, even urging then-FBI Director James B. Comey to be lenient with him, according to the testimony Comey gave after Trump fired him.
[Read the charges against Michael Flynn]
Trump was greeted in New York by protesters shouting "lock him up," a reference to the "enclose it" war cry used by both Trump and Flynn during the 2016 campaign.
Trump Motorcade arriving to the chants of "enciérrelo" in New York https://t.co/fIFcUCLuIO
– Justin Hendrix (@justinhendrix) December 2, 2017
Arriving in En his first event, Trump did not mention Flynn during his first comments, before the press was escorted. Trump on the other hand counted his election victory last year and promoted the Senate's early approval of the Republican tax plan: a rare incremental victory for a Congress led by the Republican Party that has struggled to approve Trump's agenda so far.
Senate approval of a $ 1.5 trillion tax bill followed 24-hour negotiations and tense clashes this week. The bill was approved from 51 to 49 in the early hours of Saturday morning without the Democrats and Republican Sen. Bob Corker (Republican for Tennessee) voting against. Trump predicted that Democrats who voted against the plan would pay a price in the next election.
The bill gives mbadive benefits to the rich and to corporations in the United States while providing mixed blessings to the rest of the country, The Post reported. Now he will address negotiations between the Senate and the House, which approved his own version with key differences. Whatever the compromise reached, both cameras will have to pbad it again.
"It was a fantastic night last night, we approved the biggest tax cuts in our country's history and many other things along with that," Trump told reporters on Saturday. "Now we're going to the conference and something beautiful is going to come out of that mixer, people will be very, very happy, they will get tremendous and tremendous tax cuts and tax relief, and that's what this country needs."
Carol D. Leonnig, Adam Entous, Devlin Barrett, Matt Zapotosky and John Wagner contributed to this article.
Mueller's rapid movements point to a growing legal danger for the White House
What does Michael Flynn's agreement mean for Trump? Here are 4 big questions.
Winners and losers in the GOP Senate bill: An execution list