Fmr. Federal Prosecutor Anthony Bruce, Prof. Mike Igoe, Commentator Michael Caputo

Sunday, December 3rd

Michael Flynn's guilty plea


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

For the balance of the hour and indeed much of it afterwards when Meet the Press takes over at twelve noon we are talking about the situation this week involving. President from former national security advisor Michael Flynn. He pleaded guilty on Friday to lying to the FBI about conversations with the Russian ambassador last December. He is basically now the first White House official to strike. Plea deal a cooperation deal. With special counsel Robert Mueller is inquiry into election and for interference mall are looking for possible ties between the trump campaign and Russia. The contact that was made and we talk a little bit about this last hour the contact that was made came doing the transition and not during the campaign. But nonetheless he is accused there of lying and it's kind of like the old Martha Stewart case where where she did not get that convicted of insider trading. But in the end she got convicted of lying and had to spend some prison time there. And also as a result of all of this there is that cooperation deal where Muller presumably is getting more information about what exactly went down. Let's talk a little bit more about that bring in our next guest Anthony Bruce is with us for 37 years he was the assistant US attorney in the the western office here in Western New York. And he knows certainly how prosecutions work. Mike Geiger by the way is that still with us that journalism professor at SUNY for Kanye also himself an attorney so we're going to delve into the legal issues this hour. Mr. Bruce thanks for being here pledged to join us. Good morning and take you for having me. Procedurally when you look at what came down on Friday. Does there is there anything there that that gives you an indication as to what is to come or perhaps the level of cooperation. That mr. Flynn is giving the special counsel. I think just looking at a 30000 feet to that there is giving special counsel. The reason I say that is. He's he's been asked to plead guilty and has pled guilty to what I would consider. These fairly minor charge and will probably spend little or no time in jail. The flip side of that means he's probably given special counsel an awful lot of information. Can we know what that information is based on what we've seen thus far. We can certainly make an educated guess. She is pleaded guilty to meeting with the Russian ambassador on two occasions. And and lying about that. The next question is why ADP was Russian ambassador who in the transition team put him up to meeting with Russian ambassador. Can that be backed all the way up to trumpet of course upside of that problem trump is. Now about he said that he fired split in part for lying to the FBI so that's problem for. For the president as well. I want a little bit about that here was the tweet where you you mentioned that this is from at real Donald Trump the president terms Twitter feed. I had to fire general Flynn because he lied to the vice president the FBI he's pled guilty to those lies it's a shame because actions during the transition were lawful. And that is opened up a floodgate of criticism here's corresponding Tweeter responding tweet from represented him Adam Schiff. If that's true Mr. President why did you wait so long the fire Flynn why did you fail to act into those lies were publicly exposed and why did you crash your director combing to let this go. Do you think is a former prosecutor Anthony Bruce that this tweet puts the trump administration or the president himself in jeopardy. Debt tweet in and of itself is an incriminating statement by the president now as a footnote to that. Incriminating him for obstruction of justice what what what does it. What charge would spring from. Obstruction of justice OK what what what I envisioned here is he he knew flip lighted the FBI in the tweet tells us. He did. And then he went structure called me and ask calm either had to stop or slowdown or what area only to do knowing that. That's a pretty good outline of what instructions church. A he was aware of a crime be set ignore the crime therefore obstruction of justice. Yes and you have to consider. You know I went to director earlier you want to director called in past insisted. That process one thing was present the United States this is just revert to his office a wholly different person. All right now now president trumps team this morning saying he's not to blame for that tweet involving that situation. Here's ABC reporter David Wright with a little bit of a response from the White House this week comes out from the president for the very first times suggests. Clinton knew at that time that police have lied to the FBI. Overnight. The president's personal lawyer John download. Came out and that told ABC news that actually he wrote that tweet not the president and that he did so in a sloppy manner. And that it was never meant to suggest that the president knew at the time. That's when applied via via all right now does the fact that the attorney wrote that we cannot the president gave him insulation. Maybe I'm warning you got to understand the attorney represents the president. And not to get too far got a radical the federal rules of evidence. Because he represented the president he's making. A statement in essence and the president shoes now did the president know that little line. That's a problem to prove that's a problem dollar's gonna have to just to prove. But he certainly got a leg up on that. All right how significant is it that the president's tweets are now being run by an attorney. Well to back up just a little bit. Anybody who first of all talk to law enforcement agent without first consulting with having security. And any person is under investigation says anything without consulting was attorney was an attorney. Is he's just doing the wrong thing. So this does not indicate yelled this is just caution. Well. I think we have to let Moeller Parse that out I mean is that if it is the attorneys said it in representative capacity. He would you very very reckless murder from the president and and that's from smaller to find out. 8030930. Is a number Anthony Bruce's series a former federal prosecutor in west New York. 37 years in that office were talking about the situation involving Michael Flynn. And special counsel Robert Mueller held over from the previous segment to we've got Mike I go here professor of journalism at SUNY for don't yet. And himself practicing attorney chime and and Mike what do you see involving. The procedures of Michael Flynn here. That does the way this is unfolding tell you anything about the future. Not necessarily but I think one thing. Basically you know knowing something is true improving it are two different things so depending upon how you frame your case before the court. You have to lay out Serb elements you get approval so that's a situation here I think mr. Bruce is exactly right. It seems that there's probably a lot of good stuff it's gonna come out of this which is why they're willing to go to deal. And that's what prosecutors sometimes pass on cases that the big media apart in the upper for example. The hockey player cases Chenault with the came and sought. A wider net do it because they probably felt it was not a good enough case there to go to court and that's the thing that the prosecutor decides. And it's kind of like a fishing expedition you gather all your evidence and then you decide if it's worth going forward. And it certainly seems to be in this case it's worth going forward okay so what if you have to have a in order to prove be in order to prove C. What do either of you guys read out of out of what has been put forth in the indictments already. I think Mueller is is well on his way to an obstruction case against president. I agree with Mike he's not there yet and was just have to let the chips fall but. Lord knows what he's doing and he would have entered into this plea agreement if you were as if he didn't think she was well wait. Goal. OK when we come back try Mike's shaking his head too so we'll we'll we'll take that as a yes you're absolutely right Anthony Bruce. When we come back will take a couple phone calls to 8030930s. The number and we'll bring in political commentator Michael brutal as well. Much more to come stay with us it's hard line on news radio 930 WB and hey it's hard line on news radio 930 WB and this is Dave Tivo. We do apologized by the way if you're hearing us really poorly we are still having some after effects of a fire in the building here. Minor fire but. Having the fire people here overnight. And as a result they shut down the electricity and as a result a lot of our equipment is giving us a lot of trouble. So if you're hearing me on the radio chances are you're hearing me through quite a bit of static. We are getting some reports that you might not even be hearing has there at all so if you're someone whose computer savvy in the your computer you can listeners to us nonetheless. Online at WBN dot com and we will forge ahead continuing our discussion now Anthony Bruce is with us former prosecutor federal prosecutor. For the western district of New York also attorney Mike guy goes your journalism professor at SUNY for don't yet we are talking about the situation earlier this week involving Michael Flynn. On Friday present from former national security advisor pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. About conversations with the Russian ambassador Sergey can select he basically according you know let's let's bring you back in Anthony Bruce. You were saying before the break he basically. Has now put himself out there as an ally of special counsel Robert Mueller. And as a result you feel that based on the things that have come out during this that Mueller is building an obstruction case. To what to how do you see that playing out to what. Other tea leaves that you can read in terms of who it's against it would be a case against the president. Well I think definitely vote in the case against president. Because the question is what what kind of to influence what kind of pressured the president there on June calming. Before the president hired him and why it easier tip president why eighties or a church. That pressure net inflows and call me before before he fired and it was to stop the investigation. And when investigation. Is an investigation would eventually lead back to the president's doorstep. Hear your outline of an obstruction case I got to prove it but there are a lot of an obstruction case. Now the last time united talker was right after the indictment of of former trump campaign chairman Paul man afford and that too was a case where. Robert Mueller brought in kind of an ancillary charge something that he discovered along the way something that was probably obligated prosecute because she's a prosecutor. Can we look at these two together in total. And say. There's some tea leaves over here involving man afford that point in one direction there's some tea leaves over here involving. Flame that point in the same direction. While the two pretty much to separate cases and when we take it in totality does your perspective as to targets and final outcome changed. When I look at. These two cases in their totality I see some relationship between the two cases but I don't think that they are part and parcel of one another. I look at it is. Special prosecutors looking at this from several different directions mop metaphor being one win being the other. And I think Clinton is the easier path way to get there but I think he's looking at both directions. All right earlier in the program over time about some of the media issues swirling around this Mike Geiger was still here Mike Hsu former TV reporter and also an attorney. Teaches journalism at sesame for Narnia. Let's bring in our caller or two someone that was holding from that earlier segment about the media so perhaps a question for you while Mike Tony and Clarence Europe hi thanks for waiting. Yeah talk about lying. President we've actually act on president. Topic today he'd like old war policy and I'm so far I guess what I want. I litigation and character of the person. Our military lately I've but that. Before and I believe debt obstruction of justice good idea that this. The problem the Big Apple. Let us I understand it if I could order up to eighty what I died bully. Or something like that. He. Was pretty well orders. Did you hit and pop it up Bob. But and he just sort of Obama had that you. All right I'll I'll ask the prosecutor a one of the things he raised there. Can both Canada Robert Mueller look at who presents from prison take character issues. Into account or is he pretty much obligated that would think Anthony Bruce to stick with just the fact that he's able to uncover. Brought character she's no Donald Trump could be the greatest personal life UV were personalized. He can't use that in order prosecute trial. Nor can trump feud that it will help might be able to use that this trial we will get there. His lie if I understand the question. You know I let you you're not an official person doesn't matter negated some real. An arcane rules of evidence to work as to whether he can use those other lies and prosecution of trump. And that would take probably two programs to explain. That's why diet prosecutor you know has to sit through the clutter obviously and figure out what's actually gonna work legally only other things as mr. Bruce as a fine. But ultimately what does it have to do with the price of eggs. OK so let's not go around the table and get a prediction from each one of you guys where do you see this going in and I I hate to be repetitious. But I think it's really kind of one of the best ways to sum up as we come toward the end of the program here. Mike I go when you see happening next I think it's gonna go forward I think we might be seeing the beginning of something akin to Watergate but we shall see obviously. All right and Anthony Bruce the same the same thing if you can. I can't put it any better I mean trumpet trumpet and a funny place right now he could he could very quickly. Pardon Mike Flynn. And and that was perhaps. To hammer weighs its overhead Clinton at this point. But on the other hand he'd create a firestorm that would be incredible we did that. So I suspected mode pushing forward and try and type solutions have talked about and we shall see what happens. All right without about a minute or so left before we join Meet the Press at twelve noon let's now also bring in political analyst Michael Caputo. Someone who worked for the trump administration Michael your comments area for the campaign rather arms or not the administration. Michael your comments where do you think this is going after what you've seen this past week involving Michael Flynn. Well I think after they're over there are things we know right now number one. It Michael what am I guilty to. Quote it look or act that he was fired for. Our president down from number two on everything that Michael when did beside line. We're perfectly legal in his position of the new national security advisor in the administration incoming administration and number three. There is no way. To collude. With the December accomplish with rock program that went bad there's nobody we don't know what you colluding. To affect the election that it happened a month and apple for. The bit about practical anymore. Mark Spector it's about a structure. And that's the difficult question for president strong. How do you see it playing out. What everything because you meet the program president paid weeding. Are in. You know kind of and currently to what hope is that you break this thing that he asked him. You are satisfied that there is some of wearing it well the president greeted. Not after the so you know about the hard question because when. When you're asking. A juror looked paper therefore how member of the or whether they believe. BR direct former records or call me or they believe president trump that might be a close call. But when it comes to Michael ware in general went. As a collaborator who we are already pled guilty. Prone to lying to federal official in your body but that's. Move the court is down. I have read him. Armed with a grain of salt hoop skirt question what he says so Robert Cormier is the top battle for the president. But Robert is when I think probably went bad are you very very secret. Every hour. All right former prosecutor Anthony Bruce is he when this that lacks credibility. No I don't think so I mean I think you're. I think that the good general lacked credibility despite that I think it. The president your question as to whether or not. Where are struck and let let let their favorite bit the president says that Michael when. Don't say anything to anyone don't tell anybody anything and all part you'll after the ball over. Back the structure. All right Mike Mike I'm gonna pop you up off here just to make sure we can bring in Anthony Bruce you I think you misheard me he was a lot I was asking. Have prosecutor Bruce do you think perhaps that there is a credibility issue here with Michael plan. Well he did general sense yes and in specific sense the president has already admitted. All of the various things. Would be asked testified to and so. You've been judgment five or admitted and so interceptor testifies about it I think he's pretty credible. OK fair enough that is all we have time for. Now it's off to Washington and Meet the Press on news radio 930 WB in buffalo.