The information that Yates provided McGahn - which the White House counsel passed along to Trump that same day - was based on the FBI's interview of Flynn at the White House on January 24. "The Russians also knew that General Flynn had misled the vice president and others. they likely had proof of this information - and that created a compromise situation, where the national security advisor essentially could be blackmailed by the Russians".
Testifying before Congress this week, Yates said she warned White House officials that Flynn might be vulnerable to compromise by Russians given his contacts with high Russian officials.
And why should the Justice Department care if one White House official is telling untruths to another?
"It never took the president that long to fire someone on The Apprentice", the anchor noted at the top of The Lead this afternoon, obviously referencing President Donald Trump's previous occupation of firing people on television.
It took 18 days before he was relieved of his duties, after the story was revealed by the Washington Post. In a daily briefing, Spicer responded to a question about aides misleading the president by noting that Flynn had "not been straight" with the vice president. President Barack Obama himself that month told one of his closest advisers that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which by then had been investigating Trump associates' possible ties to Russian Federation for about six months, seemed particularly focused on Flynn.
On Tuesday, Spicer said that the White House ultimately made the right decision by asking Flynn in February to resign after giving him "due process" and that the administration is not interested in relitigating the decision. 'That's what's important when you think of this'.
The Flynn case re-emerged to dog the administration on Monday, when Yates testified to Congress that she met with White House counsel Donald McGahn on January 26 and told him that Flynn was compromised and open to possible Russian blackmail. Probes by several congressional committees into Russian election meddling have been bogged down for weeks amid accusations by Democrats that Republicans have stalled progress to protect the White House.
Also Tuesday, Spicer said Trump was cooperating with a request by Sen.
But Yates, a career Justice official, has come back to haunt Trump, and this time, he can't dismiss her.
"Just because someone comes in and gives you a heads-up about something. doesn't mean that you immediately jump the gun and go take an action", Spicer said. Her answer, both times: She was concerned that Flynn had been compromised and was open to being blackmailed by Russian Federation. "You would argue that it's pretty irrational".
Yates was first brought into the DOJ during the George W. Bush administration and has been promoted successively since.
He alleged without evidence that Yates was a supporter of Hillary Clinton, whom Trump defeated in the November presidential election.
Nick Merrill, a spokesman for Clinton, did not comment on that aspect of the claim.