As Donald Trump delivered his inaugural address on Capitol Hill in January, his incoming national security adviser, Michael Flynn, sitting a few yards away, texted a former business partner to say that a nuclear power project that would require lifting sanctions on Russian Federation was "good to go", a senior House Democrat said in a letter released on Wednesday.
According to the account detailed in the letter, the whistle-blower had a conversation on Inauguration Day with Alex Copson of ACU Strategic Partners, a company that hired Mr. Flynn in 2015 as an adviser to develop a plan to work with Russian Federation to build nuclear power plants throughout the Middle East. Mr. Flynn served as an adviser until June 2016. The change would allow a business venture Flynn had worked on - nuclear power plants - to be built with the former partner. Cummings described the account in a letter Wednesday to the panel's Republican chairman, Rep. Trey Gowdy of SC.
"I believe the American people want Congress to hold President Trump and his administration accountable", Cummings wrote, "and they are exhausted of Republicans in Congress putting their heads in the sand when faced with credible allegations of grave abuses". On Inauguration Day, according to the whistle-blower, Mr. Flynn texted the former business associate to say that the project was "good to go". He then claimed Flynn had texted him "to tell others involved in the nuclear project to continue developing their plans", which were "going to make a lot of very wealthy people" once the Russian Federation sanctions were "ripped up".
The whistleblower also alleges that Copson said Flynn had assured him that USA sanctions on Russian Federation would be "ripped up" as soon as Trump was inside the White House. Cummings and committee Democrats have complained that Gowdy has stiff-armed the Flynn investigation since he took over the committee in June by consistently refusing to issue subpoenas to the White House and various administration officials, Flynn's consulting firm and his business colleagues related to the matter. Robert Kelner, an attorney representing Flynn, declined to comment.
"This is going to make a lot of very wealthy people", the associate, Alex Copson, told the whistleblower on inauguration day, according to the whistleblower's account to the Democrats.
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"Mike has been putting everything in place for us", Copson told the informant, according to Cummings.
The witness told Cummings and committee investigators that Copson shared a text message he had just received from Flynn, who was on stage at the Capitol during Trump's speech.
Attorneys for Flynn and Copson did not immediately return email and phone requests for comment. A Gowdy spokesperson could not be immediately reached for comment. Cummings said he believes Republican leaders of the Oversight Committee should approve a subpoena so they can "pursue these allegations against General Flynn in a responsible way".
"I do not bring this whistle-blower to your attention lightly", Cummings said.