Top House Intel Dem calls Flynn plea 'very significant'

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., joins "This Week" to discuss the latest in Congress' Russia probe.
6:43 | 12/03/17

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Transcript for Top House Intel Dem calls Flynn plea 'very significant'
Thank you both. Now to Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the house intelligence committee. Thank you for joining us. You heard the discussion here with general mukasey and an Abe rams. You have been following this for quite some time. Were you surprised by the plea deal on Friday? Impblt wasn't surprised by the plea deal. The fact that it was cabin to one offense. And that one offense does tell me as a former prosecutor that given the much broader ewe verse of potential liability that Bob Mueller must have concluded he was getting a lot of value in terms of general Flynn's cop ration. General Flynn, not a minor character here. In his basis for the plea, he sets out that he wasn't acting as a rogue agent. That, in fact, he was acting with the knowledge and at the direction of people who were senior members of the transition team. I think probably all of which, ultimately, ended up in the administration is very significant. It indicates to me that this is not the end of it. What about the treat yesterday from the president. We're now told it was draft bid the attorney not the president. The tweet still stands. To me, it's more significant that it's come from the lawyer. The president has shown the ability to assemble. The lawyer is going to take other things into play. He's interviewed others. This means that what the attorney is saying is consistent between the president and the staff. The president knew he had lied to the FBI. That means when he talked to the FBI director and asked him effectively, drop this case, he knew Flynn committed a federal crime. Toe many it's more serious from the attorney than directly from the president. The report in "The New York Times" today showing e-mails in the transition that in others new about the con vep sagss. Including the K.T. Mcfarland e-mail. If there's is a tit for tat escalati escalation, trump will have difficulty improving relations with Russia, which has just thrown the election to him. According to the white house, she was saying that's what the Democrats would infer. We have to look at context. The Russians just helped president trump win. After that, president Obama sanctions the Russians. Then you have Flynn, one of the top people, saying don't reaction to the sanctions. We're going to take care of this. And then lying about it. I think it's that context that is so significant. And the fact that he wasn't doing this on his own. Others within the top of the transition were knowing of it. And indeed, the president might have been knowing of it. Best way to explain the president's reaction when he did fire Flynn and the fact that he wasn't upset with Flynn. He wait sod long the fire him in the first place. And what he was upset was the press exposing the lie. Would suggest, I think, that the president was knowing of exactly what Flynn did. And the question for Bob Mueller and for us in congress is what did the president know? And if these were directed by the president? What would that tell you? We know administrations have contact with foreign officials all the time. Whey that would tell me is that one of the reasons he was talking to James Comey was that he knew this would come to light and that he wanted to protect he and Flynn for lying on his behalf. Then you get the case of obstruction of justice. I thing that's the significance of this context in which the president was intervening. He was involved in directing this, being knowledgeable of it, I think the more that shows, the stronger the occasion of obstruction become. The president said again yesterday no collusion. What has been shown is no collusion. No collusion. There's been absolutely -- there's been absolutely though collusi no collusion. So we're very happy. The attorneys are taking it further. Ji and Jeffrey at the New York are saying, it's not a crime. Any time the president has to deny something three times in a room raises a question. Here you see collusion in terms of violating the Logan act. I agree it's not likely to be prosecuted. You have the trump transition conspireing in private to subvert the bipartisan policy of the United States. Which was to sanction Russia over interference in the election. If they're liling to work secretly and privately, were they willing to do it in the campaign? What we have already seen is, that the Russians through intermediaries approached members of the trump team, including papadopoulos, the president's son, and said, we possess dirt on Hillary Clinton. We would like to have a relationship with your campaign. The campaign responded, we would love to have that. Days after this meeting at trump tower, for the very first time, Julian assange announces he has received the stolen Hillary Clinton e-mails. It appears the Russians decided the way to help the campaign was not to give the e-mails directly to the campaign. But publishing them so that the campaign and the Russians could maintain a form of deniblt. How explicit that agreement was, if there was a meeting of the pinds, would be a conspiracy that Bob Mueller would have to investiga investigate. Bottom line, do you believe Michael Flynn will incriminate president trump? I do believe he'll incriminate others in the administration. Otherwise, there was no reason for Bob Mueller to give Mike Flynn this kind of a deal. Where even in factual basis, you can see other crimes could have been charged. Thank you for your time. Thank you, George. For breaking news, download the ABC news app now. When we come back, the senate passed the GOP tax plan.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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