Wisconsin Congressional delegation split on whether Flynn resign - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Wisconsin Congressional delegation split on whether Flynn resignation merits further investigation

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(WQOW) -- Members of the Wisconsin Congressional delegation are split over whether an investigation should be launched into what the White House knew about the events that led up to Monday's resignation by National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

Democrats were voicing the following question across the halls of the U.S. Capitol Tuesday.

"Who else knew about Flynn? And when did they know about it?," asked Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI-2) on the House floor - as part of a speech asking the Trump administration to fully declassify a report on Russian involvement in the 2016 election.

A few hours after Rep. Pocan made his comments, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer confirmed the U.S. Department of Justice told Trump administration officials on January 26 about General Flynn's now infamous conversation with a Russian diplomat in late December 2016.

DOJ officials confirmed Flynn discussed Russian sanctions on Russia. Democrats believe that communication is a violation of the Logan Act - a federal law that prohibits everyday citizens from attempting to influence the actions of a foreign government with respect to U.S. interests.

But President Trump didn't ask for Flynn's resignation until news of that DOJ notification to the White House appeared in the Washington Post Monday night - 17 days later.

Spicer said Tuesday the White House doesn't believe Flynn broke any laws.

"I'm not going to pre-judge circumstances surrounding this," Janesville House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI-1) told reporters in Washington, D.C. Tuesday. "I think the administration will explain the circumstances that led to this. The (House) Intelligence Committee has been looking into this thing all along - by the way - just involvement with respect to Russia."

Speaker Ryan stopped short of calling for a House or independent investigation into what the White House knew, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell (R-Kentucky) said such an investigation is "highly likely" in his chamber.

Sen. McConnell's interest in that type of investigation is apparently at odds with Wisconsin's lone Republican Senator.

"The first thing that I thought of when I started hearing about these leaks was, again, you've got an agency that is not supportive, loyal to the President of the United States," Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) told Fox News Tuesday morning.

Sen. Johnson said he's interested in an investigation into whoever gathered the intelligence on Flynn and leaked it to the media.

"Who tapped the phones, who was listening to it, who leaked it. I think those are questions that have to be asked," said Sen. Johnson.

Sen. Johnson said President Trump needs federal employees he can trust.

"It would be very helpful if the individuals in these agencies and these departments actually were loyal to a new administration," said Sen. Johnson. "I'm afraid we're seeing that's not the case. That's what alarms me most about this instance."

But Congressman Pocan believes any investigation regarding Russia must focus on Trump.

"There's no secret that President Trump has an unnerving affection for Russian President Vladimir Putin," said Rep. Pocan.

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) joined the call for a White House investigation on Twitter.

"A bigly question that needs an answer: What does @POTUS know about Flynn/Russia connections and when did he know it? #FlynnResignation" - read the tweet posted on Senator Baldwin's account Tuesday morning.

No other members of Wisconsin's Congressional delegation made any public statement about Flynn's resignation Tuesday.

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