Michael Flynn, the embattled National Security Advisor to President Donald Trump, has resigned.
Flynn was under fire for changing his story on whether he spoke about sanctions to members of the Russian government while the presidential transition was under place.
Flynn had initially told members of the Trump administration that he never brought up sanctions – some imposed by Obama in the final days of his time in office – while participating in numerous calls with members of the Russian government.
Flynn’s denials had prompted numerous Trump administration officials, including Press Secretary Sean Spicer and most notably Vice President Mike Pence, to publicly defend Flynn.
Flynn later admitted to Pence that he may have spoken about sanctions on the Russia calls, and “couldn’t recall” whether or not that happened.
Pence was said to be furious that Flynn had lied to him and caused him to risk his credibility.
Earlier in the day, Kellyanne Conway had said the President had confidence in Flynn, but just an hour later Spicer said Trump was “evaluating” the situation.
That ominous wording proved to be a bad sign for Flynn, who issued his resignation hours later.
Trump has appointed Lt. General Joseph Keith Kellogg, Jr. (Retired) as Acting National Security Director.
Read: Michael Flynn’s full resignation letter
February 13, 2017
In the course of my duties as the incoming National Security Advisor, I held numerous phone calls with foreign counterparts, ministers, and ambassadors. These calls were to facilitate a smooth transition and begin to build the necessary relationships between the President, his advisors and foreign leaders. Such calls are standard practice in any transition of this magnitude.
Unfortunately, because of the fast pace of events, I inadvertently briefed the Vice President Elect and others with incomplete information regarding my phone calls with the Russian Ambassador. I have sincerely apologized to the President and the Vice President, and they have accepted my apology.
Throughout my over thirty three years of honorable military service, and my tenure as the National Security Advisor, I have always performed my duties with the utmost of integrity and honesty to those I have served, to include the President of the United States.
I am tendering my resignation, honored to have served our nation and the American people in such a distinguished way.
I am also extremely honored to have served President Trump, who in just three weeks, has reoriented American foreign policy in fundamental ways to restore America’s leadership position in the world.
As I step away once again from serving my nation in this current capacity, I wish to thank President Trump for his personal loyalty, the friendship of those who I worked with throughout the hard fought campaign, the challenging period of transition, and during the early days of his presidency.
I know with the strong leadership of President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence and the superb team they are assembling, this team will go down in history as one of the greatest presidencies in U.S. history, and I firmly believe the American people will be well served as they all work together to help Make America Great Again.
Michael T. Flynn, LTG (Ret)
Assistant to the President / National Security Advisor
Former General David Patraeus is said to be one of the finalists for the National Security Advisor post.
Photo – Twitter