Michael Flynn Would Like A Cookie And A Pat On The Head, Your Honor
Michael Flynn's lawyers have ONE JOB. They need to persuade Judge Emmet Sullivan to go along with Mueller's probation recommendation and not LOCK HER UP their lyin' ass client. Your Wonkette also has ONE JOB, and that is to tell you all the ways that Michael Flynn is full of crap. And we have to do it with dick jokes!
Luckily, we have been here this whole time, so we have no trouble spotting the bullshit in Flynn's sentencing memorandum. For instance, we remember when Flynn told the Senate Intelligence Committee to get bent, since he wasn't testifying without an immunity deal. So we're less than persuaded when his lawyers argue that, "General Flynn provided timely and substantial assistance to law enforcement," or that "his cooperation was not grudging or delayed."
And we are old enough to remember when Flynn pleaded the Fifth and refused to produce documents to the Senate. So, maybe not so much with this sort of bragging about the giant piles of papers he produced when scary Robert Mueller came a-knockin':
General Flynn has produced thousands of documents to the Department of Justice. Even before his voluntary pre-plea proffer sessions, he had chosen to produce sweeping categories of documents held by his two companies, rather than fight over the breadth of subpoenas, and facilitated the production of electronic devices. After his Plea Agreement, he made another five productions of documents.
Also too, FUCK YOU, this is not "genuine contrition for the uncharacteristic error in judgment that brought him before this Court; and his deep respect for the law":
Even when circumstances later came to light that prompted extensive public debate about the investigation of General Flynn, including revelations that certain FBI officials involved in the January 24 interview of General Flynn were themselves being investigated for misconduct, General Flynn did not back away from accepting responsibility for his actions.
Wait what? Is Flynn ... blaming the FBI agents who interviewed him for DOIN' IT WRONG?
Flynn lied to the FBI, ruined Peter Strzok and Lisa Page's lives trying to cover it up, and would now like a Get Out of Jail Free Card (literally) because these career public servants caught him committing all the crimes? Yes, that is absolutely what Flynn is saying here. He is saying that former FBI aggravated texter Peter Strzok and fired FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe (who strangely both have been relieved of their duties as part of Trump's Twitter witch hunt against the Department of Justice, how weird!), failed to tell him that it's a crime to lie to the FBI, a fact which was obviously heretofore unknown to anybody who ever lived. How was the national security advisor, who had been the director of national intelligence and maintained a security clearance his entire adult life, supposed to know that?!
The agents did not provide General Flynn with a warning of the penalties for making a false statement under 18 U.S.C. § 1001 before, during, or after the interview. Prior to the FBI's interview of General Flynn, Mr. McCabe and other FBI officials "decided the agents would not warn Flynn that it was a crime to lie during an FBI interview because they wanted Flynn to be relaxed, and they were concerned that giving the warnings might adversely affect the rapport," one of the agents reported. Before the interview, FBI officials had also decided that, if "Flynn said he did not remember something they knew he said, they would use the exact words Flynn used, . . . to try to refresh his recollection. If Flynn still would not confirm what he said, . . . they would not confront him or talk him through it." One of the agents reported that General Flynn was "unguarded" during the interview and "clearly saw the FBI agents as allies."
UNFAIR! If the lawmen had proof that Flynn was telling lies, they needed to warn him in advance so he'd know to be on his guard!
Popehat made the joke so we wouldn't have to:
And Peter Strzok and Andy McCabe were wearing VERY SHORT SKIRTS!
Hey, let's take a little field trip in the Wayback Machine to December of 2017, when Mueller charged Flynn with lying to the FBI regarding multiple conversations he'd had with the Russian Ambassador about sanctions.
On or about January 24, 2017, FLYNN agreed to be interviewed by agents from the FBI ("January 24 voluntary interview"). During the interview, FLYNN falsely stated that he did not ask Russia's Ambassador to the United States ("Russian Ambassador") to refrain from escalating the situation in response to sanctions that the United States had imposed against Russia. FLYNN also falsely stated that he did not remember a follow-up conversation in which the Russian Ambassador stated that Russia had chosen to moderate its response to those sanctions as a result of FLYNN's request.
Plus those lies about asking the Russians not to vote to censure Israel at the United Nations.
During the January 24 voluntary interview, FLYNN made additional false statements about calls he made to Russia and several other countries regarding a resolution submitted by Egypt to the United Nations Security Council on December 21, 2016. Specifically FLYNN falsely stated that he only asked the countries' positions on the vote, and that he did not request that any of the countries take any particular action on the resolution. FLYNN also falsely stated that the Russian Ambassador never described to him Russia's response to FLYNN's request regarding the resolution.
In a just world, Michael Flynn would go to jail for lying and also CRIMINAL STUPIDITY. What kind of national security advisor has unencrypted phone calls with the Russian ambassador and thinks, Hey, it's cool, the FBI would never record any of this?
Sadly, we don't live in a just world. Donald Trump is dangling pardons, and the only way the special counsel will get cooperation is to offer something better. So Mueller's office recommended no jail time for Flynn, and in exchange he gave them A LOT.
He participated in five pre-plea proffer sessions with the Special Counsel's Office and fourteen additional meetings with the Government pursuant to the Plea Agreement entered on December 1, 2017. In total, he participated in nineteen meetings with the Special Counsel's Office and other components of the Government, totaling approximately sixty-two hours and forty-five minutes.
As Flynn's lawyers argued, Alexander Van der Zwaan and George Papadopoulos got jail time because they lied to the SCO and refused to cooperate. Unlike Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen, Flynn wasn't a complete idiot -- he never tried to pull a fast one with Robert Mueller. So, yeah, it sucks, but he'll probably get the year-long probation and 200 hours of community service he's asking for. God-willing, Flynn had the goods, and his testimony will take down the entire Trump crime syndicate while he's picking up trash on the side of the highway or whatever.
LOCK THEM ALL UP.
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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.