Former top White House official K.T. McFarland has reportedly revised her statement to the special counsel’s office about her knowledge of former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s Russian contacts.
McFarland made the revision after her reported testimony to Robert Mueller‘s investigators —stating that she never talked to Flynn about his discussions with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak about sanctions — was contradicted by Flynn’s guilty plea last year.
“On that call, Flynn and [McFarland] discussed the U.S. sanctions, including the potential impact of those sanctions on the incoming administration’s foreign policy goals,” read a line in Flynn’s plea agreement.
The former top Trump aide told investigators in her revised statement that Flynn may have been talking about sanctions during a 2016 conversation the two had that McFarland initially denied had anything to do with sanctions targeting Russia’s government, according to the Post.
McFarland didn’t respond to requests for comment for the newspaper’s story.
McFarland’s nomination to be ambassador to Singapore was derailed late last year over similar issues after Democrats and some Republicans raised concerns about contradictions between Flynn’s guilty plea and her testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), who sits on the panel, at the time called the apparent contradiction between McFarland’s testimony and Flynn’s plea “alarming.”
“Recent developments suggest that Ms. McFarland gave false testimony to the United States Senate on a matter as significant as communications between the Russian government and the Trump transition team,” he said in a statement in December.
“If this is the case, this is an alarming development, and another example of a pattern of deception on the part of Trump’s closest associates regarding their connections and communications to Russian government officials,” he said.
President Trump‘s attacks on the Russia probe have intensified in recent weeks after former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight counts of tax and bank fraud last month.
Manafort agreed to cooperate with Mueller’s probe as part of a guilty plea in a separate federal court in Washington, D.C., this month.