Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, the controversial official who had been an intelligence adviser to President-elect Donald Trump throughout the 2016 presidential campaign, is set to become the business mogul's National Security Adviser.
On Nov. 16, news broke that Trump was all but assured to appoint Flynn.
“BREAKING: President-elect Trump intends to pick Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn to be his National Security Advisor, a source familiar tells @NBCNews,” tweeted out CNBC Now.
Trump aide Jason Miller appeared to be taken aback when asked about the appointment during an interview on Fox News.
“No formal announcement yet for that position,” Miller said. “Gen. Flynn met with the president-elect today. He has been a companion on the campaign trail quite a bit, as we’ve seen over the past few months.”
Miller added that he believed Flynn would “be a fantastic addition. I’ll let the president-elect make that decision. I’m a huge fan of Gen. Flynn.”
The potential national security adviser was appointed by President Barack Obama to head the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) from 2012 to 2014, when he was fired. Flynn maintains that he was let go by the Obama administration over disagreements on how to report progress on the war against terrorist forces, according to the National Review.
Flynn is among the small pool of foreign-policy officials and veterans who did not condemn Trump’s qualifications during the presidential campaign. He advised Trump on international politics over the summer and fall, participating in campaign rallies and publicly blasting Obama’s approach to combating terrorism.
The former DIA head is also controversial, drawing raised eyebrows from other intelligence officials by appearing with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a gala and appearing on the Russian-owned network RT several times.
Flynn also runs a consulting firm that has lobbied on the behalf of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government, Politico reports.
If Trump had appointed Flynn to a role such as Secretary of Defense, the former DIA head’s potential conflict of interests could result in him being rebuffed during Senate confirmation hearings. Instead, the role of national security adviser does not require confirmation, meaning that Flynn’s history would not require a review by Congress.