I Could Shoot Someone on Fifth Avenue and not Lose Voters
Events have happened at such a pace that it is hard to keep the timeline straight, and things that happened only a few weeks ago seem like ancient history. Most of the relationship to dates of this information came from an LATimes article by Colleen Shalby and Michael Finnegan outlining how things have happened to date.
November 8, 2016 Trump wins election and almost immediately begins naming his cabinet choices.
Trump picks a cabinet and names cabinet level appointees including Sen. Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, and Michael Flynn as National Security Advisor.
Most of the picks were confirmed quickly, but some only recently were confirmed.
Sen. Sessions’ confirmation took place after a speech deploring the nomination by Elizabeth Warren that would have outlined his long career as a denier of Civil Rights was squelched.
November 10, 2016, President Obama warns Trump that Flynn is a problem. This warning is confirmed by Sally Yates testimony in May of 2017.
Flynn, according to information gleaned from the New Yorker and elsewhere was a good intelligence officer, but his contemporaries thought him to be a poor choice for National Security Advisor for several reasons.
One of the things that made him a good intelligence officer was his contrarian attitude which often made other officers approach things in ways they might not have otherwise done. How that would work in a political setting wasn’t very clear. Flynn’s contemporaries kept a list of crazy things that Flynn said and believed. They referred to these as Flynn Facts. Among those are: three quarters of the cell phones in the world are bought by Africans, Islam has as its goal the enslavement or execution of eighty percent of the world’s population, Islam is not a religion but a political ideology that seeks to destroy Judeo-Christianity.
It is not bad enough that Flynn believes these things; what is bad is the fact that he becomes enraged when any of them are questioned.
November 18, 2016, Trump picks Flynn as National Security Advisor. Almost immediately there is protest. Flynn, in 2015, attended a lavish dinner in which he is seated next to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Fairly quickly information of large speaking fees comes to light. Flynn did not first get an OK to make the speeches from National Security. (This follows a life-long habit of ignoring rules and regulations that Flynn felt were ridiculous.)
December 6, 2016, Flynn’s son is removed from the White House Staff.
Flynn’s son who apparently believes many of his father’s “Flynn Facts” was dismissed for spreading false stories on Twitter.
December 29, 2016, Obama imposes sanctions on Russia for hacking the DNC and attempting to influence U.S. elections.
December 29, 2016, Flynn contacts Russian ambassador in an exchange of a number of phone calls.
December 30, 2016 Putin announces that he will not retaliate against the U.S. surprising Obama. Trump praises Putin.
Early January, 2017 the intelligence community discovers Michael Flynn’s conversations with Ambassador Kislyak in a routine monitoring of Kislyaks conversations.
January 11, 2017 Trump denies ties to Russia after a dossier suggesting that Russia had information that it was using to blackmail Trump. Trump tweets; “Intelligence agencies should never have allowed this fake news to "leak" into the public. One last shot at me. Are we living in Nazi Germany?”
January 12, 2017 Washington Post reports on Flynn-Kislyak ties
January 13, 2017 Trump spokesman Sean Spicer denies report
January 15, 2017 Pence defends Flynn
January 20, 2017 Trump is inaugurated as President.
January 21, 2017 Trump visits the CIA, and speaking of himself in the third person praised the CIA.
January 22, 2017 Flynn goes to work
January 23, 2017 Flynn is interviewed by the FBI.
January 23, 2017 Sean Spicer says there was no conversation about sanctions between Flynn and Kalyak.
January 26, 2017 Sally Yates warns White House about Flynn
January 27, 2017 Trump has Comey over for Dinner. According to NYT article Comey is asked for his loyalty and Comey responds that he can offer his honesty.
February , early, 2017 Trump in an interview with Fox News, Bill O’Reilly, on O’Reilly’s comment that “Putin is a killer”, responded “You think our country is so innocent.”
February 7, 2017 Trump tweets, “I don’t know Putin”.
February 8, 2017 Flynn once again denies any talk with Kislyak about sanctions against Russia.
February 9, 2017 Pence finds out he has been deceived about Flynn and that Trump has known about the deceit since January 26. Flynn changes his story saying that he can’t be 100% sure that he didn’t talk about sanctions with Kislyak.
February 10, 2017 Flynn calls Pence to apologize. Trump asked about the report in the Washington Post about the deceit says he isn’t familiar with the article.
February 13, 2017 Stephen Miller (white house spokesperson) declines to say whether Trump has confidence in Flynn.
Kellyanne Conway says that Flynn has Trump’s full confidence
An hour later Sean Spicer says Trump is evaluating the situation
February 14, 2017 Sean Spicer announces that the White House had been evaluating Flynn for two weeks because of “eroding trust”.
Trump meets with Comey and asks him to drop the investigation of Flynn “because he is a good guy” and he has resigned. This meeting was not revealed until May 16 when it was reported in the NYTimes.
February 15, 2017 Trump calls Russia storyline “non-sense”.
February 16, 2017 Trump calls Russia storyline “fake news”.
February 26, 2017 Trump doubles down on assertion that Russia connection is “fake news”.
March 20, 2017 Comey reveals that there is an ongoing investigation into a connection between Russia and the Trump campaign.
March 22, 2017 congressman Devin Nunes, head of the House Intelligence Committee, meets with Trump to discuss classified information about the committee’s investigation. After the meeting Nunes reveals that the names of some Trump officials may have been inadvertently picked up during routine monitoring and not redacted.
Hearings are cancelled indefinitely.
Later in March; Flynn asks for immunity from prosecution in exchange for testimony. It is not granted.
April 11, 2017 Carter Page, Trump campaign advisor, comes under investigation as a possible Russian operative.
April 27, 2017 It is revealed that Pentagon officials have been investigating whether Flynn broke military rules by taking money from Russia and Turkey.
May 3, 2017 Comey testifies before congress.
May 8, 2017 Sally Yates testifies. Acting Attorney General Yates stated that she warned Trump on three separate occasions about Michael Flynn’s possible connections with Russia.
May 8 2017 Trump states that the Russia story is a “total hoax”.
Deputy Attorney General, Rod Rosenstein, writes memo declaring that James B. Comey, FBI director mishandled the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email two weeks after being made deputy Attorney General.
May 9, 2017 Trump fires Comey using Rosenstein’s letter as justification. This justification fails to satisfy the “sniff test” and within 24 hours Trump changes his story. Trump asserts Comey “was not doing a good job” and had “lost the trust of other FBI workers
May 10, 2017 Trump meets with Russians and reportedly gives them highly classified intelligence endangering Israeli sources.
May 11, 2017 Acting FBI Director, Andrew McCabe testifies that Comey was well respected in the Bureau and had not lost the confidence of those in the FBI.
May 12, 2017 Trump threatens Comey with a possible “tape” of their conversation in which Trump attempted to coerce Comey into dropping the investigation of Flynn.
May 15, 2017 Trump is said to have shared classified intelligence with Russians.
May 16, 2017 The NYTimes reports that a memo of Trump’s attempt to obstruct justice exists.
Trump is going to visit world leaders and is trying to find a replacement for Comey. Sources say that at least two top picks for the job have said they are not interested.
Trump is at least inept, possibly guilty of obstruction of justice and the silence coming from Republican lawmakers is deafening. While Democrats have called for additional investigations of Trump and his firing of Comey, Republicans have been cautious, saying that they want to hear testimony from Comey and to see the memo.
Mitch McConnell’s reaction was to plead with the White House for “a little less drama” so that Congress could get on with enacting the President’s agenda. He is attempting to shift attention without success to enacting a replacement health care bill for Obamacare.
At this point no Republican is expressing outrage at Trump’s behavior. Why have super-patriots John McCain and Lindsay Graham not been screaming about sharing secrets with Russians?
Today, Congressman Al Green, Texas, asked for Trump's impeachment.
The Dow has fallen over 300 points as investors for the first time seem to doubt that the Trump administration will be able to do all of the things that business has been looking forward to.