Former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn leaves federal court in Washington, Friday, Dec. 1, 2017. Flynn pleaded guilty Friday to making false statements to the FBI, the first Trump White House official to make a guilty plea so far in a wide-ranging investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Wow.

This is not what was supposed to happen.

Today, former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn showed up in federal court to plead guilty to lying to FBI agents. What happened was Flynn was basically told that if he pleaded guilty he was looking at jail despite prosecution recommendations.

First, Flynn’s attorneys had been making noises like Flynn was pleading guilty to avoid a trial rather than pleading guilty because he was, you know, actually guilty. In fact, the judge chastised Flynn’s lawyers over that and made Flynn admit that he lied and knew he was lying and even specified the location as “in the West Wing.”

The judge asked Flynn several times if he wanted to consult with his attorneys about proceeding with the plea agreement. And then the judge lowered the boom. In fact, at one point the judge asked prosecutors if Flynn had committed treason. I AM NOT MAKING THAT UP.

Sullivan reminded Flynn he could get into “more trouble” if he were to lie in court, then asked, “Were you not aware that lying to FBI investigators was a crime?”

“I was aware,” Flynn said.

The judge asked if he wanted to postpone the sentencing, or reconsider his plea.

“I would like to proceed your honor,” Flynn said.

“Because you are guilty of this offense?” the judge responded.

“Yes, your honor,” Flynn said.

Flynn has been expected to make a personal plea for Sullivan to show him leniency, though the judge indicated early he was not inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt.

“I’m not hiding my disgust, my disdain for this criminal offense,” Sullivan said.

“Could he be charged with treason?” Sullivan asked special counsel prosecutor Brandon Van Grack.

“It’s such a serious question, I’m hesitant to answer it,” Van Grack responded.

IANAL, so I can only speculate at what happened here. One of two things here. Either the judge is pissed at the whole “entrapped” story he’s seeing in the media an thinks Flynn really is a lying sack of something and wants to make that point…or he thinks Flynn is right and is going to force him to reject the plea and fight it in order to avoid a jail term. What isn’t on the table is saying he was screwed and still getting no jail time.

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