The evisceration of Michael Flynn

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

In a surprise twist today, a federal judge delivered a withering brushback to anyone hoping Michael Flynn would get off easy for lying to the FBI.

The big picture: Prosecutors had asked U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan for leniency. But in the courtroom today, Sullivan lashed into Flynn, suggested leniency wasn't coming and told the retired general he should consider delaying the sentencing.

Mitch McConnell is confident there won't be a government shutdown

Mitch McConnell
Photo: Mitch McConnell. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters Tuesday that a partial government shutdown is "not a good option" and that he's confident the government will stay open over Christmas.

Why it matters: McConnell said he's been "in consultation" with the White House about how to move forward, and that the administration is “extremely flexible" on the issue of funding for the border wall, which President Trump has said is necessary for him to pass any type of spending plan. Lawmakers have until Friday to reach a deal.

Go deeper: The White House asks federal agencies to contribute to border wall funding

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