Democratic Senator Kicks Off Yates Hearing With Chilling Trump/Nixon Analogy

Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates and former National Intelligence Director James Clapper delivered testimony Monday afternoon as part of an ongoing investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) kicked off the proceedings with a chilling warning to the Senate subcommittee: We've seen this kind of abuse of power before.


"We need a more thorough accounting of the facts. Many years ago, an 18-minute gap transfixed the country and got everybody's attention in another investigation," he said, alluding to the Watergate trials of President Richard Nixon. "In this case, we have an 18-day gap between the notification of the White House that a Senior official had potentially been compromised and action taken against that senior official's role." 

Yates was appointed U.S. Deputy Attorney General under President Barack Obama and has emerged as a liberal hero in recent months after refusing to enforce Trump's travel ban, an act of defiance that led to her abrupt dismissal. She was expected to detail before the Senate subcommittee her communications with the Trump Administration on the potential security risk posed by Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

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