Oh, Michael Flynn, Judge Sullivan Has Just One More Thing
Judge Sullivan is mad, Marcy Wheeler is right, and that unflushable traitor turd Mike Flynn will not GO THE FUCK AWAY, ALREADY! Just another day in hell, right?
For months, NatSec blogger Marcy Wheeler has warned that Michael Flynn and his batshit lawyer Sidney Powell were poking the bear with their antics in US District Judge Emmet Sullivan's courtroom. After signing a plea deal under penalty of perjury admitting that he'd lied to the FBI and knowingly hidden his work on behalf of the Turkish government, then admitting to it under oath in Judge Rudolph Contreras's courtroom under penalty of perjury, and then re-allocuting for Judge Sullivan, once again under penalty of perjury, Michael Flynn has decided that actually he wasn't lying to the FBI at all. Whoopsie!
Hello, everyone knows that if you delete your tweet confessing to crime, it means it never happened. That is just law, people!
In his new and improved version of events, he'd just "forgotten" about telling the Russian ambassador that Trump would cancel Obama's sanctions punishing the Kremlin for trying to ratfuck our elections. And it totally slipped his mind that he asked the Russians to block a vote against Israel at the UN. So Flynn wasn't "lying" to the FBI when they asked him about it less than a month later and he denied it ever happened. He just, ummm, misremembered.
The court was having none of this, of course, and was prepared to sentence Flynn when Bill Barr swooped in to the rescue. He arglebargled up a motion arguing that there was no predicate to go speak to Flynn — the FBI had to close its old investigation and open a new one, because REASONS — and thus Flynn's lie was not material and no harm, no foul.
To accomplish this dubious feat, Barr deliberately misconstrued Acting Assistant Attorney General Mary McCord's frustration that James Comey sent FBI agents to interview Flynn without clearing it with the rest of the DOJ, mischaracterizing it as anger over lack of predicate. And the esteemed attorney general failed to disclose that former FBI counterintelligence head Bill Priestap told the DOJ just hours before it submitted its motion to dismiss the case that it had entirely misinterpreted his personal notes on the case. All of which speaks to a certain, shall we say, lack of candor on the part the government and may account for the refusal of any regular prosecutors to put their name on the motion.
Among the many critics of Barr's grossly partisan weaponization of the DOJ to punish Trump's enemies and reward his friends is retired Judge John Gleeson, who penned an op-ed in the Washington Post with two former high-ranking Justice Department officials urging Judge Sullivan to force the DOJ to account for its bizarre, nakedly partisan reversal.
Fortunately, the court has many tools to vindicate the public interest. It can require the career prosecutor to explain why he stepped off the case, as another federal judge recently did when the Trump administration attempted to replace a trial team litigating the politicization of the census. It can appoint an independent attorney to act as a "friend of the court," ensuring a full, adversarial inquiry, as the judge in the Flynn case has done in other situations where the department abdicated its prosecutorial role. If necessary, the court can hold hearings to resolve factual discrepancies.
And Judge Sullivan said DAMN RIGHT! Somebody oughta look into what the hell is going on at the Justice Department. And while that somebody is at it, he can check out Michael Flynn and see whether maybe that guy did perjury traps to his own dumb self by telling so many lies in Judge Sullivan's courtroom. Matter of fact, Judge Gleeson is just the man for that job! Looks like that somebody is YOU.
Let's just quote the whole order, shall we?
Upon consideration of the entire record in this case, it is hereby
ORDERED that the Court exercises its inherent authority to appoint The Honorable John Gleeson (Ret.) as amicus curiae to present arguments in opposition to the government's Motion to Dismiss, ECF No. 198, see, e.g., United States v. Fokker Servs. B.V., 818 F.3d 733, 740 (D.C. Cir. 2016); Jin v. Ministry of State Sec., 557 F. Supp. 2d 131, 136 (D.D.C. 2008); it is further
ORDERED that amicus curiae shall address whether the Court should issue an Order to Show Cause why Mr. Flynn should not be held in criminal contempt for perjury pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 401, Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 42, the Court's inherent authority, and any other applicable statutes, rules, or controlling law.
LOLOLOL forever. Turns out changing your story 57 times and using the courtroom to grandstand and angle for a pardon while simultaneously working your political connections to take the justice out of the Justice Department is ... perhaps a bad legal strategy. And neither the president nor Bill Barr can magically disappear a judicial contempt finding. Womp womp.
Okay, we covered the fake "unmasking" controversy this morning. Which means we are well over our Michael Flynn limit for the day. Gonna go drink a bottle of Listerine to wash the taste of traitor out of our mouths now. BLECH.
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Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.