Flynn Sentencing Move Spurs Questions About Duration Of Mueller Probe

Robert Mueller’s request that a federal judge move forward with sentencing for Michael Flynn, President Trump’s former national security adviser, has triggered new debate over the status of the special counsel’s investigation and the value of Flynn’s cooperation.

Some observers interpreted the move, which followed months of delays in Flynn’s sentencing, as an indication that Mueller is unlikely to call Flynn to testify at any future trials that may arise from the Russia probe.

Mueller’s request for Flynn’s sentencing came days after he secured a key cooperator in Paul Manafort, the one-time Trump campaign chairman who participated in the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting with a Russian lawyer that was predicated on obtaining damaging information on Hillary Clinton.

Flynn pleaded guilty in December to one count of lying to FBI agents about his contacts with the Russian ambassador to the United States and agreed to cooperate with Mueller’s team, from submitting to interviews with government investigators to providing courthouse testimony.

Mueller had sought to delay Flynn’s sentencing four times, a sign that as of late August his cooperation was still needed months after his guilty plea. Early on, there was speculation in conservative circles that Flynn’s plea deal could be collapsing, with some alleging that Flynn had been set up by the FBI.

“On one side for the White House, I think it’s a recognition that Mueller and the special counsel’s office are done with Flynn and likely the collusion question,” said GOP strategist Ford O’Connell. “But the White House is still fuming because what you have here is an investigation in search of a crime.”

Read more from Morgan Chalfant at The Hill

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