The Possible Reasons Flynn was Refused Immunity are all Good for the Blue Team

by TrueBlueMajority –

Is it wrong that I am smiling?

When I saw that the Senate Intelligence Committee rejected Michael Flynn’s immunity request, I grinned from ear to ear.

For hours.

In fact, I think I am still smiling now.

Let me look in the mirror… yes!  That *is* a smile I see!

Because every single thing about this development is good for the Blue Team.

It’s a clear sign that the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence intends to demonstrate how men who know what they are doing handle this kind of thing.

Mark Warner and Richard Burr (sir) may as well have said to Devin Nunes: “Serious people play this game a different way.  Watch and learn, kid.  This is how we do it.”

The same crystal clear message has been sent to DJT/Bannon, neither of whom has any idea how Congress works, how investigations work, or what a starship can do.

Sorry, I’ve been watching a lot of Star Trek lately and one of the repeating themes is when a newcomer suddenly discovers that a starship run by highly competent people has capabilities that an inexperienced person may have never dreamed of.

The ship of state is not some skiff that any attention seeking schmo can step in and row perfectly right away, or even after 70 days.  The U.S. government is much closer to being the flagship vessel in Starfleet, with intricacies you sometimes only discover by trial and error after years of service.

Now let’s consider some of reasons why they may have turned him down.

One possibility is that the proffer raised red flags.

In the proffer, Flynn would have to give them a preview of what he plans to tell them in the real testimony he wants immunity for.

He could have given them nondescript information that they did not feel was valuable enough to exchange for immunity.  The Senate Intelligence Committee could be refusing immunity at this stage in an attempt to get Flynn to reveal juicier information or additional details.

Another more cynical possibility is that they didn’t trust him to stick to the information in the proffer.  We’ve all seen Law and Order, where the witness says one thing in private and says something else in the public hearing/trial.

Common sense says this can go two ways.  He can say one thing in private and say LESS in public. I am not a lawyer and don’t know how these things work if he tries to change his story and offer less information in the public hearing than he did in the private pre-testimony conversation.  I assume they have some official record they can reference to prove he changed his story.

But wait.  More likely is that they worry he would say one thing in private and MORE in public.

Huh?  Why, you ask, would anyone do that?

Because if Flynn gets immunity, then falls on his sword and claims he did everything with no one helping him, then he gets to be the fall guy.  Everyone else is off the hook, and it will be hard to explain to Jane and Joe Averagevoter why the investigation isn’t “over”.

This one makes a lot of sense.  It smells the kind of thing DJT’s people would think up.  “Hey, I’ve got an idea! Let’s get Flynn to agree to take the rap for all of us, request immunity, then say he did everything!  Then we can claim the case is closed and he will have covered our butts.”

But the administration telegraphed their hand when DJT had such a bland reaction to the news.

When Flynn first requested immunity, lots of folks were expecting a flurry of rage tweets from DJT.  Since he has been calling the whole Russia connection “fake news” why would Flynn need immunity?  Both men said on the campaign trail that people only ask for and get immunity when they have done something wrong.  Doesn’t Flynn asking for immunity prove that he and others did something wrong and he wants immunity in order to admit to it?

In he face of that news, it was completely out of character for DJT to respond by saying yeah, sure, no problem.  Flynn *should* ask for immunity!

I am long past expecting consistency from DJT.  I wonder sometimes if he even remembers what he said yesterday, much less last month or last year.

Under this fall guy plan, the only way DJT could be so sure that Flynn (with immunity) would say nothing to implicate him, is if he had some idea (or pre-plan) that Flynn’s testimony would lead the investigation in a direction away from him.

Then they would have created the perfect talking point for themselves: Flynn did it all, and he has confessed, just as the National Enquirer has already reported!  Why are you are still asking questions about other members of the campaign?  At some point you have to take yes for an answer!

Fortunately, the people on the Senate Intelligence Committee, this is not their first rodeo.

They rejected the immunity request.

They have upped the ante.

Ball’s back in your court, DJT team.  Do you have a clue what happens now?

The most intriguing possibility of all is that the Senate Intelligence Committee is trying to flush larger prey out of the bushes.  Maybe Flynn is small potatoes for them.  Maybe Flynn only offered to give up Manafort, or someone against whom they have already built a strong case.  They want more substantial information.  Denying immunity to Flynn is the way to get it.

Either Flynn knows more, and he will offer it to get the deal.

Or someone else knows more, and was kicking himself for not asking for immunity first, but now sees he has been given a second chance.

Even the political neophytes in the DJT administration know that the first to make the deal usually gets the best deal.  If the rats are not yet deserting the sinking ship they are standing on the desk considering their options.  Flynn’s immunity request being rejected may make one of them sit up and take notice.  Hmmm, Flynn didn’t get a deal, maybe that is because they want more than he can tell or is willing to tell.  So if I offer to testify with what *I* know, perhaps I can get the deal they would have promised to Flynn!

We only need one person to break the logjam.  Just one.  And rumors that Republicons in Congress will start clamoring to go directly after DJT once his approval numbers sink 5% lower are schadenfreudelicious rumors indeed.

So.

Either Flynn didn’t give them enough in the pre-testimony and the Senate intelligence committee is trying to strong-arm him to tell more before they will give him immunity.

Or they are indicating that they do not trust him to stick to the pre-testimony and want additional assurance that he will not try to take additional blame on himself in order to protect others.

Or they are trying to see if denying immunity to Flynn will cause someone with more substantial information to come forward.

All three of those possibilities are good for the Blue Team, and right now I can’t think of any other reason why Flynn’s request for immunity would have been denied.

Can you?

Maybe I misjudged Richard Burr.  He has certainly surprised me by showing old school professional respect for ranking member Mark Warner, and appears to be committed to returning to the bipartisan tradition of Congressional Intelligence Committees that existed before the Republicon party lost its mind.  So far he is being fairer in chairing the Senate intelligence Committee investigation than Nunes has been with the House Intelligence Committee.

Admittedly, that is a very low bar.

 

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos