Schiff: Gates, Flynn negotiating with committee about testifying, won’t meet subpoena deadline

By June 10, 2019 July 19th, 2019 Uncategorized

Former Trump campaign deputy chairman Rick Gates — one of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s crucial cooperators — has begun providing documents to the House Intelligence Committee, Chairman Adam Schiff said Tuesday night.

The California Democrat said Gates and his attorney have been negotiating with the committee about the former campaign aide testifying in person, as well, “and we believe we’re making progress.”

The panel has also contacted a lawyer for former national security adviser Michael Flynn, another Mueller cooperator, about scheduling an appearance as well.

The Intelligence Committee had subpoenaed both Gates and Flynn to provide documents and appear for testimony by Wednesday, but Schiff acknowledged that neither man would meet that deadline. Flynn, in particular, has recently seemed to shift legal strategies, dumping his team of lawyers in favor of a prominent critic of the Mueller investigation.

Prosecutors recently dropped plans to call Flynn as a star witness in a case against a former business partner. That could affect the timing of his intelligence committee testimony as well, Schiff noted.

“We had anticipated bringing him in to testify after he testified in the trial,” Schiff said. “As he is no longer testifying in the trial, we have been in touch with his counsel about scheduling his appearance.”

Flynn in 2017 pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations he had with Russia’s then-ambassador. He has yet to be sentenced.

Gates provided key testimony to Mueller about his longtime partner, Paul Manafort, who ran the Trump campaign for three months in 2016. Gates described sharing internal polling data, at Manafort’s direction, with an associate who Mueller’s team said had links to Russian intelligence. He also testified in a bank and tax fraud trial in which Manafort was ultimately convicted last year.

Gates last year pleaded guilty to conspiracy and lying to the FBI and agreed to cooperate with Mueller’s probe. He has not yet been sentenced.

The Intelligence Committee subpoenaed both men in June after pursuing voluntary cooperation for months. Gates had previously indicated to the committees that he was willing to work with them once his tenure of cooperation with government prosecutors had ended. But as Gates’ role as a cooperating witness extended deep into 2019, the Intelligence Committee ran out of patience.

 

This piece originally appeared in Politico.