US' Flynn quit because he was a 'lightning rod'

'By night's end, Mike Flynn had decided it was best to resign,' Kellyanne Conway says

US' Flynn quit because he was a 'lightning rod'

World Bulletin / News Desk

 Just hours after former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn's abrupt resignation, a top Trump aide said Tuesday that he left the post because he recognized he had become a potent source of controversy. 

Speaking on the Today Show, Kellyanne Conway said Flynn resigned because "he knew he'd become a lightning rod." 

"By night's end, Mike Flynn had decided it was best to resign," she said.

At issue, Conway said, was Flynn's misleading of Vice President Mike Pence over calls he made with Russian officials regarding U.S. sanctions before President Donald Trump assumed office. 

"It was misleading the vice president that made the situation unsustainable," Conway said. 

The Justice Department informed the White House last month that Flynn was at risk of being blackmailed by Moscow due to the discrepancies between the events of the call and his accounting of them. But Conway said just hours before Flynn's resignation was made public that the former national security advisor enjoyed Trump's full confidence. 

When pressed by Today Show host Matt Lauer on why the issue was not addressed sooner, Conway said "obviously the situation became unsustainable".

In his resignation later, Flynn said he provided Pence with "incomplete information" during the transition in administrations "because of the fast pace of events".

Flynn said he was tendering his resignation "honored to have served our nation and the American people in such a distinguished way," despite only having been Trump's national security advisor for 24 days -- a potential record for the shortest time served by such a high-ranking official.

Trump is currently considering a handful of potential candidates to replace Flynn. Reportedly among them are former CIA Director retired Gen. David Petraeus, and retired Vice Admiral Robert Harward. 

In the interim, Trump has named Lt. General Joseph Keith Kellogg as acting national security advisor. 

Flynn’s resignation marks a surprisingly early reshuffle in Trump’s inner circle of advisers after the president’s first three weeks in office, which has been marred by controversial executive actions and highly contentious Cabinet member confirmations.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 14 Şubat 2017, 21:23