Vice President Mike Pence said he would be “happy” if Michael Flynn, the ousted national security adviser, returned to the White House after the Justice Department last week moved to drop its criminal case against him.
“I think Gen. Michael Flynn is an American patriot,” Pence told Axios in a snippet of an interview released Sunday. “He served this country with great distinction in uniform. And now the decision by the Justice Department lays bare what was clearly prosecutorial abuse.”
“And for my part, I’d be happy to see Michael Flynn again,” he said in the interview which is slated to air Monday evening on HBO.
President Trump told reporters at the White House on April 30 that he “would certainly consider” bringing Flynn back to the White House.
“I would. I think he’s — I think he’s a fine man,” Trump said.
The Justice Department filed court papers last week to drop the case against Flynn, arguing that the FBI’s interview of him in January 2017 was “untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn” and was “conducted without any legitimate investigative basis.”
Flynn, a retired Army general, pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in December 2017 about his conversations with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak twice in the period after Trump’s election win and his inauguration in January 2017.
But Flynn sought to change his plea in January after he switched legal teams, proclaiming that he is “innocent of this crime” and claimed federal prosecutors tricked him into accepting a plea deal.
Trump fired Flynn in February 2017 for lying to the FBI and Pence about his contacts with Kislyak.
Federal Judge Emmet Sullivan, who presided over the Flynn case, must still approve the motion to dismiss Flynn’s charges.