Speaking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Monday morning, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-MA) accused Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Michael Flynn of trying to hide his unofficial discussions with Russia by using encryption technology.
With more evidence mounting against Flynn for his discussions with the Kremlin, Schiff pointed out that the administration was not coming out calling this story “fake news” because they are aware that US intelligence agencies likely have audio recordings of these discussions that took place while President Obama was still in office.
“They know that if there is a transcript if there are recordings, that can’t be dismissed,” Schiff said. “The fact that they would mislead the country about this is inexplicable.”
“What I think is interesting here, there are allegations — again, as yet unproven — that they may have also used encrypted communications,” he added. “Since Flynn was talking with the Russians, if he was using encrypted communications, it wasn’t to conceal it from the Russians. Then you have to ask, who were they concealing conversations from?”
The communications between Flynn and Russia expose an even bigger cover-up because multiple administration officials have tried to deny they even happened, including Vice President Mike Pence.
The Trump administration tried to argue that the calls and emails only took place to set up meetings with Trump and Russian officials after he took office, however, this does not explain why the use of encryption would be deemed necessary.
Simply emailing to set up a meeting is legal; however, making promises and discussing national security with Russia or other foreign countries, especially those in which were seeing sanctioned imposed on them by the outgoing president for their interference in the 2016 election, is certainly illegal.
If the administration is working so hard to deny any illegality of the un-encrypted conversations, it leaves one to wonder what they are trying to hide in the encrypted messages, and Rep. Schiff wants to know.
“This is something that I think we need to determine as part of an investigation,” he said. “But if there were then the question is, why were those being used? Who were those conversations to be concealed from, why was it necessary to go to that if you were simply talking about Christmas greetings as Sean Spicer apparently misrepresented to the country?”
Watch the interview here:
Dan Arel is a bestselling author of The Secular Activist; and Parenting Without God. He is an award-winning journalist and host of the Danthropology Podcast.