tv House Oversight Committee Leaders Say General Flynn Failed to Disclose... CSPAN April 25, 2017 1:48pm-1:59pm EDT
♪ >> the u.s. senate is in recess now for their weekly party lunches. they will be back at 215 eastern with more debate on the nomination of rod rosenstein to be a deputy attorney general. a confirmation vote is expected at 5 p.m. today. alexander acosta nomination to be labor secretary wilby next. .a confirmation vote on that is likely tomorrow. there's an all senate briefing tomorrow on north korea taking place at the white house. all numbers are encouraged to attend. also government funding runs out on friday so the senate will need to act on an extension. live coverage when they return at 215 eastern here on c-span2. we have this tweet from the hill just a short time ago. it's referring to, state by the chair and ranking member of the
house oversight committee investigating former national security advisor michael flynn. back in march the committee sent a letter to the white house requesting records related to payment that he received. congressman chiefest and elijah cummings held a briefing to talk about the findings. >> thanks for being here. an obligation to seek and obtain permission to receive money from foreign governments prior to any engagement with them. it does not appear to us that that was ever sought nor did he ever get that permission. we will jointly be doing a letter for a final determination on that. that will need to come from the department of army as well as
the inspector general at the department of defense. and if that money was received by general flynn, and we believe that it was, that money needs to be recovered. that final determination again want to come from the department of the army as well as the department of defense, but as a former military officer, you simply cannot take money from russia, turkey or anybody else. and it appears as if he did take that money. it was inappropriate and there are repercussions for the violation of law. >> good morning, and i just like to read a very short statement. i want to be very careful because we are coming out of a classified briefing. first, we have just come from this briefing with the defense intelligence agency. they brought in documents for us to review relating to general flynn.
as you know, general flynn previously led the way i and he served as a national security adviser until he was fired by president donald trump. right now we cannot discuss the contents of the documents that we just saw because they are indeed classified. but we can say this. they are extremely troubling. we have concerns that i believe these documents should be declassified to the fullest extent possible without compromising sources and methods. i want to thank chairman chaffetz who joined our request for these documents, and i believe that he feels the same, that the american people should be able to see these documents for themselves. second, we've been trying for several months to obtain general plans security clearance information to determine whether he reported payments he received
for his trip to russia in 2015 when he dined with the russian president. we have now obtained his application to renew his security clearance on gender 26th district 2016. this. this form is called sf-86. general flynn filed his sf 86 about a a month after he traveled to moscow. however, there's no evidence as the chairman said anywhere in these documents that reported the funds he received for this trip. there's also no evidence that he sought permission to obtain these funds from a foreign source. this is a major problem. as the sf-86 claims, and a call, all questions on this form must be answered completely and truthfully. it also says of this, and let me quote directly, they noticed its
criminal code title 18 section 1001 provides that knowingly falsifying or concealing a material fact is a felony, which may result in fines up to five years and five years imprisonment. based on this document i believe the oversight committee should be holding a hearing with the general flynn. i understand the chairman, we talked briefly about this, and it seems that this is perhaps the purview o of the intelligene committee, and i understand that, mr. chairman, but we need to have the opportunity to ask general flynn directly why he concealed these foreign payments from the defense department. finally let me say this. as part of our investigation, chairman chaffetz and i sent a bipartisan request to mr. priebe
is, the white house chief of staff, a wide range of documents including any, and a court, referring or related to lieutenant general flynn's contacts with foreign nationals. despite all of these very troubling development, last wednesday on april 19, we received a response of the white house refusing to provide any of the documents we requested. so we received no internal document relating to what general flynn reported to the white house when they bedded him to become national security advisor. we received no documents relating to his termination and his national security advisor for concealing his discussion with the russian ambassador. in short, the white house has refused to provide this committee with a single piece of paper in response to our
bipartisan requests, and that's simply unacceptable. and so today i'm releasing the white house letter to you, and i hope our committee will impress upon them the need for them to provide the documents that we are seeking. thank you very much. >> congressman, from what you've seen so far, do you believe that michael flynn broke the law by not disclosing his payments or not getting permission, these foreign payments? >> personally, i see no information or no doubt -- no data to support the notion that general flynn complied with the law, and that is, he was supposed to seek permission and receive permission for both the secretary of state and the secretary of the army prior to traveling to russia to not accept that payment, but to engage in that activity. i see no evidence that he actually did that. >> do you think this could be punishable? >> yeah, i think it can.
i think, that's why i cited the code. but that's going to be left up to others to decide. just wanted to know what is exposure is. but clearly i agree with the children. i mean, he was supposed to get permission and he was supposed to report it and he didn't. there's no evidence of it. >> were not here to make the final determination. what we are going to jointly is send a letter to the department of the army and the comptroller specifically, as well as the inspector general their at the department of defense. at some point they need to make that final determination. one of the remedies is to recover the money that was paid. above and beyond that i don't know. >> is there any evidence that general flynn's contacts went beyond russia? >> it's really not something we specifically looked at today. >> mr. chairman, do think the white house is obstructing in
this thing, not responding? >> no. this is something general flynn, the have -- before he ever joined the trump administration, this is something general thing was supposed to do as a former officer. i don't know. in fact, i'm fairly curious as to how widespread this is. no former military officer is allowed to accept payments from a foreign government. and my guess is that's probably not the first time this is happened, and it does concern me. >> same question to you, mr. cummings. >> what was the question? [inaudible] >> as i sit at the end of my statement, we haven't gotten certain information that we've asked for. i wouldn't call it obstruction. these things happen. and as far as those documents are concerned, hopefully we'll get them. either way, emoluments, it's interesting. a lot of people are totally unfamiliar about the emoluments clause of the constitution but it's something i talked about