House Democrats Subpoena ‘Critical Witnesses’ Michael Flynn and Rick Gates

The House Intelligence Committee issued subpoenas Thursday to two former Trump campaign officials who pleaded guilty and cooperated with Russia probe investigators. Former Trump campaign deputy chairman Rick Gates and former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, both of whom came up in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia report, were subpoenaed at the behest of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.).

“As part of our oversight work, the House Intelligence Committee is continuing to examine the deep counterintelligence concerns raised in Special Counsel Mueller’s report, and that requires speaking directly with the fact witnesses,” Schiff said in a statement. “Both Michael Flynn and Rick Gates were critical witnesses for Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation, but so far have refused to cooperate fully with Congress.”

Schiff said that while Flynn’s cooperation agreement only required him to testify for the Department of Justice, he should go above and beyond that, according to CNN.

“While the committee understands that your cooperation agreement with the Department of Justice only requires you to testify for the department, the committee is disappointed that you do not view your cooperation more broadly as an obligation to assist the United States of America, not merely the Department of Justice,” Schiff wrote.

It should be noted that Flynn officially hired Sidney Powell as his new attorney on Wednesday. Powell has been a public critic of the Russia investigation, saying that “the entire Russia collusion narrative was made up.” Legal experts have speculated about what Powell’s hiring could mean.

Thursday’s subpoenas provide further proof that Schiff is ramping up his Committee’s counter-intelligence investigation. Following testimony from three FBI officials on Wednesday, Schiff emerged from the hearing and threatened to subpoena the FBI if it continued to stonewall his Committee’s investigation.

“The FBI has an obligation by the National Security Act to brief us on a recent counterintelligence matter. If there are ongoing counterintelligence investigations involving people around the president, they must inform us,” he said, adding that he would “use whatever compulsion is necessary” to make the FBI to provide the requested information to Congress.

The subpoenas to Flynn and Gates require them to provide documents to the Committee later this month; they must also appear before the panel on July 10.

[Image via Mark Wilson/Getty Images]

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