Resigned National Security adviser Michael Flynn stepped down because the "media frenzy" surrounding his reports to Vice President Mike Pence made him a "distraction," but he didn't lie about the calls, former Navy SEAL Carl Higbie warned Tuesday.
"Well, it's not a lie," Higbie said during a panel discussion on MSNBC's "Live with Stephanie Ruhle" program. "He left out information inadvertently, as he said in his letter. There's no proof the Russians can distract him. He felt he was a distraction and he stepped down."
But, Higbie warned that just because Flynn stepped down in the face of the "media frenzy" surrounding leaked reports of telephone calls between himself and a Russian ambassador, that doesn't mean others in the Trump administration will also step down amid similar scrutiny.
He told the program that he knows Flynn personally, and he takes him at his word that he did not leave out information on purpose. Further, Higbie said he wants to know why people in the government are leaking information to the press, even if they think they're defending the Constitution.
Further, Higbie said he thinks such leaks came from people with "crosshairs on Mike Flynn," and there are "enormous leaks" coming out of the White House.
"This is indicative of politicos, Obama leftovers," said Higbie. "We call them the 'we be's; we be here when you come and we be here when you go.' The loyalists. Donald Trump needs to find out who is loyal, who is political."
Ruhle told him that perhaps the government is leaking information "because of all this confusion, because possibly [former acting Attorney General] Sally Yates warned the White House counsel a month ago about the risk of blackmail, possibly because you have someone like Kellyanne Conway speak of alternative truths. Sean Spicer is potentially put in a situation where he's like a human shield speaking before the press. And the story keeps having to change."
MSNBC terrorism analyst Malcolm Nance, a retired Navy Senior Chief Petty officer, argued back with Higbie, saying the White House staff should be loyal to just one thing, the Constitution.
"You and I as former service members have sworn our oath to one thing, the Constitution of the United States," Nance told him. "None of them should be loyal to Donald Trump. They should be loyal to the honor and dignity of this nation."
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