Michael Flynn formally cut a plea deal this morning which sees him pleading guilty to a single reduced felony charge in exchange for testifying against Donald Trump and, well, pretty much everyone else. For Special Counsel Robert Mueller to have offered such a sweetheart deal, Flynn must have provided compelling evidence in addition to his testimony. So yeah, Donald Trump is a goner in the end. But in the mean time, say goodbye to Jared Kushner.
It’s long been known that Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn jointly met with the Russian Ambassador during the transition period, and that Kushner then went on to meet with the head of a Russian bank. It’s long been widely reported that Flynn’s communications with Russia were at the behest of Kushner, though that’s never been proven. But now it’s all going to come out, and in fact Bloomberg (link) is already reporting today that Flynn was acting on Kushner’s instructions.
It’s being reported elsewhere today that Michael Flynn will testify that Donald Trump ordered him to communicate with the Russians during the election. So it appears Flynn is going to give up Trump and Kushner by fingering them as the ringleaders of the Trump-Russia conspiracy. Again, Flynn will need to provide evidence against them, and not just his word, in order to take them down. But again, Mueller wouldn’t have given Flynn this kind of deal unless Flynn has already provided compelling evidence against bigger fish.
What this means is that one way or the other, Jared Kushner’s time is very short. He now has a very brief window in which he’ll have to decide whether to cut a plea deal of his own against Donald Trump, or take his chances in court on an array of potential criminal charges. While Flynn’s deal is so lenient that it’s possible he may never actually go to prison, it’s unlikely that Kushner will get as sweet of a deal. He had his chance to be first. Now he’s left having to decide whether to take the leftover scraps.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report