Yates Worried Russians Could Blackmail Michael Flynn

(CN) – Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates told a Senate subcommittee on Monday that she had two meetings with Trump White House counsel Don McGahn that focused on concerns that former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was vulnerable to being blackmailed by Russians.

Yates said during the meetings and a follow-up phone call, she told McGahn that the Russians knew Flynn had misled the vice president and others about contacts he’d had with them last fall.

She said she voiced her concerns so that the administration could take “appropriate” action in regard to Flynn.

That led to the White House asking the FBI whether firing Flynn would compromise an ongoing investigation about the national security adviser’s contacts with the Russian ambassador.

Yates said she told McGahn, firing Flynn would not endanger the inquiry.

Earlier on Monday, former National Intelligence Director James Clapper told the subcommittee that he was unaware of the FBI’s counterintelligence probe into Russia meddling in the election during his time as head of the nation’s 17 spy agencies.

James Clapper, who stepped down the day President Donald Trump was inaugurated, said if anyone working for him came to believe an official might be acting on behalf of a foreign power, the normal procedure would have been to share that information with the FBI.

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