Pence was told Flynn didn't discuss sanctions, aides say

Pence said in a Jan. 15 appearance on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that Flynn’s conversations with the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak were “strictly coincidental” and had nothing to do with the Obama administration’s decision to punish Russia for meddling in the November election. “They did not discuss anything having to do with the United States’ decision to expel diplomats or impose censure against Russia,” Pence told CBS.

An administration official told POLITICO that Pence’s remarks came after a conversation with Flynn and were guided by that conversation — leaving open the possibility that Flynn misled the Vice President just as he repeatedly denied the allegations to the Washington Post before acknowledging the topic may have been discussed.

Privately, Pence aides expressed frustration at their boss being placed in such a position.