A prominent House Democrat and potential Senate candidate is urging the Pentagon to revoke former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn’s military pension because of the retired army general’s role in former president Donald Trump’s effort to overturn results of the 2020 election.
“I write to draw your attention to the seditious actions taken by retired Lieutenant General Michael Flynn… and to ask that he be held accountable by the Department of Defense (DoD) and stripped of any military benefits he receives due to his encouragement of and involvement in violent attempts to overturn our democratic process,” Representative Ruben Gallego wrote in a letter sent to Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday. The existence of the letter and its’ contents were first reported by Politico.
Mr Gallego noted the ex-general has made “inflammatory and deeply troubling” statements in recent months which amounted to advocacy for a military coup, including comments revealed in a new book by ABC correspondent Jonathan Karl, which Mr Flynn made while actively urging Pentagon officials to order ballots seized and take other extralegal actions to prevent President Joe Biden from being declared the winner of the 2020 presidential contest.
“These outrageous actions are unacceptable for anyone who currently serves or previously served in uniform, Any retire or servicemember who suggests committing treasonous acts such as overthrowing our democratically-elected government forfeits their moral entitlement to the support of the people of the United States,” Mr Gallego wrote, adding that Mr Austin should work with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs “to rescind any other military or veteran benefits that Mr Flynn may receive through programs designed to reward honorable service to the nation”.
“Insurrectionists like Mr Flynn should not enjoy the benefits meant for those who have honorably upheld their oath to defend this country,” he added.
Both the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs have the authority to revoke Mr Flynn’s retirement pay, which could be as much as several hundred thousand dollars per year.
Mr Flynn could also be recalled to active duty to face a general court martial because military officers who’ve retired retain their commissions as “officers of the United States.”
In June, an Army spokesperson said the Defence Department is “aware” of statements made by Flynn advocating for a military coup, but said the department was “not investigating these statements further” at the time.