Trump’s tweets came just hours after Yates, a career prosecutor, said she had warned the Trump administration in late January that its then-national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, could be susceptible to blackmail.
The president took to Twitter to blast Monday’s hearing on his campaign’s ties to Russia. He called the hearing of a Senate Judiciary subcommittee a “charade” and derided Yates’ testimony as “old news.”
Yates testified that she told a senior administration official in January that Flynn had been “compromised” and that she suspected Russia knew Flynn had misled Vice President Mike Pence. Such information, she said, created a situation “where the national security adviser could essentially be blackmailed.”
“To state the obvious, you don’t want your national security adviser compromised with the Russians,” Yates said.
Yates said she expected Flynn to be removed quickly by the White House, but the decision to dismiss him came more than two weeks later, after The Washington Post revealed he had lied to Pence about speaking with a Russian ambassador. Yates was fired from her post after refusing to defend the White House’s controversial first executive order banning travel to the U.S. from seven Muslim-majority nations and barring refugees.
Trump also attacked Yates shortly before the hearing was set to begin, implying that she was responsible for leaks of classified information.