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Michael Flynn, Through His Attorney, Denies Being Present at January 5 Trump International Hotel Meeting
Flynn, who disputes the public account of the meeting presented by Trump donor Charles W. Herbster, also submits various other denials contained in this article.
On January 26, Proof published a claim by Trump donor Charles W. Herbster that he had attended a meeting at the private residence of then-President Trump at Trump International Hotel on January 5, 2021. Today, as on January 26, Proof claimed no private knowledge of the meeting, only that an attendee at the meeting had publicly insisted that former Trump National Security Advisor Michael Flynn was there. Here, merely for reference given the information that follows, is what Herbster wrote on his Facebook page (see also Proof, January 26):
Proof is always interested in one thing only: the truth. There will never be any other agenda for this website, no matter the topic being discussed. Any information provided at Proof that is incorrect or disputed is immediately acknowledged as such.
In this case, Proof must note that Michael Flynn, by and through his attorney Jesse R. Binnall at Harvey & Binnall PLLC, has now declared he was not at the January 5, 2021 meeting at Trump’s private residence at Trump International Hotel.
Proof continues to take no position on the dispute this denial creates between Mssrs. Herbster and Flynn, as its author has no firsthand information about the meeting other than what is publicly available and has never claimed otherwise. Mr. Herbster says Mr. Flynn was present; Mr. Flynn denies it. The truth of the matter will have to be worked out between those two parties, and when it is worked out, Proof will report on it without favor or bias. Again, Proof is always interested in one thing only: the truth.
Attorney Binnall does, however, have additional objections to the information earlier presented on Proof. Here are his concerns, as expressed via letter on February 11, 2021:
This is the language that was previously published at Proof, which does not reference Mr. Flynn specifically:
“Not only does this [January 5] meeting appear to confirm that Trump’s team helped orchestrate the events of January 6, but that it participated in the calibration of those events to exert maximum ‘pressure’ on members of Congress in the midst of them executing a grave constitutional duty. Moreover, it participated in that calibration in the presence of a member of the United States Senate, who was therefore—we can now conclude, from the reporting of the Omaha World Herald—working in private with the president’s team to advise Trump on how to generate that maximum pressure on his Senate peers.”
Proof attached the above language only to only those Team Trump members who were present at the January 5, 2021 meeting in question. If Mr. Flynn was not at the meeting above, he does not fall into the category above; he was put into this category—he now says falsely—by Mr. Herbster, whose statements Attorney Binnall does not dispute (or reference) in his letter but which we must assume, in fairness to Mr. Flynn, the latter now deems categorically false. Again, Proof is in no position to determine who is telling the truth as between Mr. Herbster and Mr. Flynn because its author has no firsthand knowledge of what occurred in Trump’s private residence on January 5, 2021, nor could he, nor has he ever claimed to have such knowledge. If Proof declares that it knows for certain Mr. Flynn absolutely was not at the January 5, 2021 meeting, it would not only be claiming facts its does not possess, but would undoubtedly receive, in short order, a letter from Mr. Herbster’s counsel. For this reason, Mr. Herbster and Mr. Flynn will have to get together—with or without counsel—to resolve their dispute so that major media and information sources like Proof can relay to readers exactly what occurred.
Separate from all this, Attorney Binnall may not be aware of the numerous major-media articles and YouTube videos curated by Proof that connect Mr. Flynn to both the Jericho March of January 5 and January 6—it was a two-day affair—and the Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America on January 5. I mention these major-media articles and videos because Mr. Flynn does not deny being involved with the Jericho March on January 5 and/or January 6 and does not deny speaking in public at the January 5 Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America event, nor could he do so—as his involvement in these events have been documented by countless major-media sources and, again, with video evidence.
For this reason, of course some of the words previously at Proof would still apply to Mr. Flynn even if he were not, as he now says, at the January 5, 2021 meeting at Donald Trump’s private residence at Trump International Hotel.
For instance, Mr. Flynn helped promote the January 5-6 Jericho March after speaking at the Jericho March in DC in mid-December 2020, an event that infamously ended in violence. ABC News reported, as linked to by Proof, that “Longtime Trump advisers [were] connected to [the] groups behind rally that led to Capitol attack. Roger Stone, Steve Bannon and Michael Flynn all promoted the January 6 rally.” Proof also published video of Mr. Flynn’s comments on January 5, both in an interview with Alex Jones and at the January 5 Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America (the latter of which is sometimes called the Rally for Revival).
So Mr. Flynn can be said to have been involved, directly or indirectly, with the January 6 Jericho March; and according to ABC News he “promoted” the January 6 Stop the Steal/March to Save America that ended in violence at the Capitol; and he certainly employed incendiary language (quoted at length by Proof) in his January 5 interview with Alex Jones and his January 5 speech at the Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America (Rally for Revival). The latter event was, according to Flynn, intended to exert pressure on Congress. So it is accurate to say that Mr. Flynn “personally helped foment” a “large, angry gathering” on January 5—the day before the Capitol breach—and that the raucous January 5 rally in question could, as Proof previously submitted, “only exert extraordinary pressure on members of Congress if the participants” in the event were to go to the Capitol the next day, on January 6, and “illegally enter[ ] Capitol grounds.”
Having said all this, the term used by Proof in reference to all of the attendees at the January 5, 2021 meeting at Trump’s private residence at Trump International Hotel—“co-conspirators”—cannot be applied to Mr. Flynn if he was not at that meeting, and indeed that word was only ever intended to apply to individuals who were at that meeting.
So to the extent Mr. Flynn now says he was not there, that word is retracted as to Mr. Flynn for the present time.
Future events will undoubtedly resolve the dispute between Mr. Herbster and Mr. Flynn about the latter’s attendance or non-attendance at the January 5 meeting, and when that dispute is resolved, Proof will announce any resolution. Presumably, Mr. Flynn has sent an even angrier letter to major Trump donor and expected Nebraska gubernatorial candidate Charles Herbster, as if he has not done so, many might then presume that Attorney Binnall’s letter was intended to intimidate the author of Proof for political reasons, while sparing Mr. Herbster—the actual author of the claim Mr. Flynn now complains of, but also a major ally of former Flynn boss Donald Trump—any inconvenience whatsoever.
Similar to “co-conspirator,” the phrase “seditious conspiracy” was only ever intended to be attached to anyone who attended the January 5, 2021 meeting—and at that only “arguably”, as Proof explicitly noted that more investigation on this question would be required. But again, to the extent Mr. Flynn now says he was not at the said meeting, that phrase is retracted as applied to Mr. Flynn. This retraction comes with the same caveat as before: should future information resolve the ongoing dispute between Mr. Herbster and Mr. Flynn in a way that allows a final conclusion on the matter of Mr. Flynn’s attendance or non-attendance at the January 5, 2021 meeting that has now become the focus of so much national attention, Proof will issue a clarification on that matter here and it will do so immediately.
In the opinion of this author, the January 5, 2021 Rally for Revival was a “large, angry gathering”, one whose attendees—in some, as-yet unknown number—were present at the Capitol the following day. In the opinion of this author, Mr. Flynn’s incendiary words on January 5, 2021, which involved quite a lot of mention of blood and war, “helped foment” the anger in that gathering on January 5 (as opposed to January 6).
By the same token, Mr. Flynn’s association and promotion of the Jericho March helped produce an event on January 6, 2021 that was intended to “exert extraordinary pressure on members of Congress”, and in the opinion of this author the Jericho March could only have that effect if its members were on the Capitol grounds rather than on the streets around the Capitol. As a matter of simple acoustics, there would be no way for anyone in the Capitol to register the presence of the many Jericho Marchers unless and until they were inside the building itself. This said, Mr. Flynn did not enter the Capitol; and Mr. Flynn never told anyone to enter the Capitol; and that is why Proof has never claimed otherwise on this subject and certainly does not do so now.
As for whether Flynn “helped orchestrate” any events on January 6 besides promoting the Jericho March and speaking in an incendiary fashion on January 5 to some number of Rally for Revival attendees who later breached the Capitol on January 6, Proof has no opinion beyond noting that, per ABC News, Flynn “promoted” the January 6 rally now accused of causing the breach of the Capitol (to wit, the Stop the Steal/March to Save America event). I will note that in speaking at the January 5 Stop the Steal/Rally to Save America event, Flynn certainly was lending his name and notoriety to an event that, due to its name (as very few seem to have called it the Rally for Revival) will naturally, in the public consciousness, be connected to the more famous January 6 event that also had “Save America”—the name of Mr. Trump’s Super-PAC—in its title.