Wingnuts Magic Up Novel Legal Theory About Michael Flynn's Innocence, Are Pathetic :(

What is Fox & Friends's Brian Kilmeade babbling about now? No one seriously thinks Mike Flynn is innocent! The Mueller investigation would be over already if they could just get through deposing Flynn about his one million crimes.

Or so we thought last week when we came upon Kilmeade's tweet. It turns out that the wingnut feverswamp is having a #ClearFlynnNow moment because they can't read good. They really believe the court is about to bust this case wide open, revealing Mike Flynn to be an innocent man wrongly framed by evil Robert Mueller and his band of goons.

Here's a terrific thread by DC Attorney Susan Simpson explaining the whole bullshit story. Let's hit the highlights.

On February 12, Byron York, a man who knows better but always does it anyway, wrote in the Washington Examiner,

According to two sources familiar with the meetings, Comey told lawmakers that the FBI agents who interviewed Flynn did not believe that Flynn had lied to them, or that any inaccuracies in his answers were intentional. As a result, some of those in attendance came away with the impression that Flynn would not be charged with a crime pertaining to the Jan. 24 interview

We're not sure how Flynn could have unintentionally told the FBI that he didn't discuss sanctions with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak, but that's where this nonsense is coming from.

On the 21st, York found sinister meaning in Flynn's case being assigned to a new judge. Presumably Judge Rudolph Contreras recused himself because of his connection to the FISA Court, and Judge Emmet Sullivan was randomly assigned. But don't let that stop you, Byron!

Just days after accepting Flynn's guilty plea, Contreras was taken off the case by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. No reason was given. [Dun Dun DUNNNNNNN!!!!1!]

Of potentially more interest is Contreras' replacement, Judge Emmet Sullivan.

See, this one time, 10 years ago, Judge Sullivan got really mad at the government for withholding exculpatory evidence in the trial of grifty Alaska Senator Ted Stevens. So OBVIOUSLY the Chief Judge of the DC District Court yanked Judge Contreras off the case and dispatched Judge Sullivan on a top secret mission to stop Bob Mueller from framing poor, naive Mike Flynn. Yeah, that's really what they're going with here!

On Dec. 12, after just a few days on the Flynn case, Sullivan, acting on his own, ordered the office of special counsel Robert Mueller "to produce to [Flynn] in a timely manner — including during plea negotiations — any evidence in its possession that is favorable to defendant and material either to defendant's guilt or punishment."

While the move could be simply standard procedure for Sullivan, it was nevertheless notable because Flynn had already pleaded guilty, and, as part of that guilty plea, agreed to "forgo the right to any further discovery or disclosures of information not already provided at the time of the entry of [Flynn's] guilty plea."

Oh, noes! Byron York is on to you now, Robert Mueller!

EXCEPT, Judge Sullivan enters the exact same order into the record on every criminal case he hears. And when he entered the order on the 16th, he made a notation that said, Ooops, my clerk accidentally used an old version of this document. Just updating, NBD.

But that doesn't gibe with Byron York's theory that Mike Flynn was coerced into pleading guilty and now the government will have to turn over evidence proving he never committed those one million crimes. So York just left that part out.

As did Andrew McCarthy at the National Review.

Now, it could be that this is just Judge Sullivan’s standard order on exculpatory information, filed in every case over which he presides.

COULD BE! And a former federal prosecutor like yourself could have verified it with just a few clicks!

Could this provide General Flynn with factual grounds of which he was previously unaware to seek to have his plea vacated? Would he have a viable legal basis to undo the plea agreement that he and his lawyer signed on November 30? We do not know at this point.

Is Andrew McCarthy lying his ass off? We do not know at this point! (We do.)

But we are absolutely certain that Margot Cleveland is playing fast and loose with the truth at The Federalist, where she is doggedly insisting that it doesn't matter if the new order was purely administrative, because "there are enough shady characters involved to believe there will be something of significance."

TFW you get totally dunked on and you play it off like, Check out this newly discovered evidence which totally proves my point EVEN MORE!

Update: This article originally stated it is “impossible to know whether Sullivan modified the standing order in response to special concerns in the Flynn case.” However, following publication of this article, other attorneys were able to locate cases in which the revised standing order was entered prior to Flynn’s case being reassigned to Sullivan, establishing that the change was not made in response to Flynn’s case. The modified standing order, which was first entered in Flynn’s case on Friday, proves especially significant give the circumstances of his plea, as the article explains in detail.

COOL STORY BRO! Hey, wanna slip that correction into the other stories, just to make it seem like you guys aren't all just making shit up?

While the December standing order represented Sullivan’s normal practice, as both McCarthy and York noted, Flynn had already pled guilty.

WHAT??? No they fucking didn't! The whole lot of you pretended that a routine administrative order was a sign of the prosecutorial misconduct apocalypse, and then you laundered your shit through every rightwing media outlet in the country.

You've got that charlatan Andrew Napolitano screaming on the propaganda network that Michael Flynn is about to withdraw his guilty plea and resume his rightful place by Donald Trump's side at the White House.

You've got the trolls, American and otherwise, out there tweeting this nonsense.

And next week, it will all be forgotten. BECAUSE IT'S BULLSHIT! Except the citizens of Wingnutistan will be even more convinced that the whole Russia investigation is a corrupt hoax. Which is what you liars had in mind the whole time.


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[Washington Examiner / Washington Examiner, again / National Review / The Federalist]

Liz Dye

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.


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