February 13, 2020

"In [Roger] Stone’s case, the guidelines worked a severe result. In tampering cases, a guidelines enhancement calls for a drastic increase in the sentence..."

"... if the defendant threatened the witness with physical injury. This drove Stone’s 'offense level' from 21 to 29 on the guidelines grid, so even though he is a first offender... his recommended sentence zoomed to 90 to 108 months — instead of 37 to 46 months....  [T]he prosecutors’ submission was an accurate (if extreme and unyielding) rendition of federal sentencing law....[T]he president went bonkers on Twitter upon learning of the recommendation... [but] the DOJ and the White House have had no communications about the case.... Late Tuesday, the DOJ filed a revised sentencing memo, which does not recommend a specific sentence but strongly suggests that a term calculated without the eight-point enhancement — i.e., between 37 and 46 months’ imprisonment — would be just. The new memo concedes that the prosecutors’ calculation in the original memo was 'arguably' correct, but contends that it would be unreasonable under the circumstances... But for his connection to Trump, Stone would never have been pursued in a collusion fever dream that Mueller’s prosecutors knew was bogus when they charged him. Yet his crimes, while exaggerated, were real. He was convicted by a jury... though he could be spared by the judge....  If President Trump is afraid, in an election year, to take the political hit that a pardon for Stone would entail... he should bite his tongue.... The Justice Department’s job is to process cases, including Mueller cases, pursuant to law. If the president wants to make those cases disappear, he has to do it himself and be accountable."

Clear analysis from Andrew C. McCarthy in "The Roger Stone Sentencing Fiasco." (National Review).

174 comments:

Michael K said...

McCarthy usually defends his old buddies at DOJ. This was a bit of a stretch.

wholelottasplainin' said...

Anyone recall when Holder refused to prosecute "his people", the Black Panthers? Or when he referred to himself as being Obama's wingman?

Or when Obama tried to argue "prosecutorial discretion" with his DACA ukase?

Or when Obama declared Hillary's innocence?

Dems conveeeeeeniently sent those actions down the Memory Hole, hoping we would forget.

We didn't.



Hagar said...

If the idea was to hit at Trump rather than find the right punishment for Stone, then the recommendation was indeed unreasonable and worse.

My impression is that Roger Stone is a pretend insider and tough guy, who is not really either, and normally would not get that much attention paid to him, whatever he was doing.

Quaestor said...

If between 37 and 46 months’ imprisonment — would be just, then how is a sentence of 90 to 108 months also just for the same crime committed by the same person?

Something evil is afoot. The sooner Obama's DOJ prosecutors are scattered to the four winds the better for justice in this country.

rhhardin said...

I've lost track of what the crime was.

Gilbert Pinfold said...

Let's see:
Judge blocks release of jurors' names
Judge allows jurors to be empaneled after testifying to anti-Trump prejudice in voir dire
Judge disallows Stone's use of social media and threatens jailing for contempt when he posts online.
Stone convicted
Mueller's angry Democrats brief DOJ on recommended sentence, and submit a totally different (and insanely severe) recommendation
Four of Mueller's angry democrats announce their resignation when DOJ modifies sentence recommendation, and flounce off the stage
Jury forewomen posts here support of the Mueller Four online, but fails to scrub her social history revealing that she is a Democrat activist who routinely posted anti-Trump messages, ran for Congress in TN (DC court, of course--how does that work), and actively protests Trump online and in marches in front of Trump DC hotel.
Just another day in America

daskol said...

He dressed and talked funny, and pretended he was buddies with Julian Assange.

Earnest Prole said...

Surely Roger Stone and his Nixon back tattoo can find a way to enjoy a few months in prison before Trump pardons him the day after the election.

MacMacConnell said...

The judge will decide, regardless of what DOJ or the defense recommends. Trump will pardon Stone after the election.

David Begley said...

Newt just said that Hillary destroyed her hard drive and that’s obstruction of justice. And it is a felony to lie on a FISA application.

rhhardin said...

Perhaps prior correct operation of the system should not be assumed.

daskol said...

The trial ran the risk of making Stone look ridiculous for his antics, but they are not as ridiculous as the antics of his opponents. They can't help themselves, and have made Stone a sympathetic figure.

Ann Althouse said...

"If between 37 and 46 months’ imprisonment — would be just, then how is a sentence of 90 to 108 months also just for the same crime committed by the same person?"

One is a rules-are-rules technical application of the sentencing guidelines, the other is an infusion of mercy by looking at special circumstances.

What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.

Michael K said...

Stone is a clown but he got into the anti-Trump whirlwind.

Manafort was a crook, like the Podestas, but Weissmannn was trying to get him to "compose" rather than sing. Hence the solitary confinement, etc

rhhardin said...

Special circumstances might include political investigation. No sentence at all would be the correct result.

Gilbert Pinfold said...

Oh, and don't forget the SWAT raid to arrest Stone, with CNN cameras conveniently there to record a pre-dawn arrest. How did CNN just happen to be parked outside when DOJ rolled up in body armor and M4 carbines? Puzzler, that...

Chuck said...

There is some speculation, Althouse, that there will be no pardon of Stone, Because a full pardon would deprive Stone of his ability to hide behind Fifth Amendment rights to avoid testifying in any future grand jury investigations of Trump and his circle.

I’m not sure. There are a few factors complicating that scenario. But no matter what, that is my guess on what will happen and why it will happen. Because that would serve Trump’s personal interest. Not any public interest or larger interest of Justice.

Andy McCarthy didn’t mention it explicitly, but perhaps the largest feature of Stone’s “Guidelines” sentencing was that he never, ever cooperated with the DoJ. So there’s that too.

Of course Andy McCarthy can explain all of this better than Trump could ever articulate or even imagine. But even Andy McCarthy can’t find much reason to offer so much as a word of praise for Trump in this.

Amadeus 48 said...

"If the president wants to make those cases disappear, he has to do it himself and be accountable."

Oh, he will. Why does McCarthy think Trump wants the Stone case to disappear? Trump wants it right out front. Why?

1. I forget how many months Ted Kennedy got for writing that letter to the Rooshkies DURING THE COLD WAR suggesting that he could help them get their message across in the US to defeat Reagan in the 1984 election. Stone ought to get that same sentence. Oh, Ted wasn't prosecuted, was he?
2. This is clearly a selective prosecution. Clapper lied to Congress by his own admission. Nothing.
3. The Mueller Show was the epitome of turning an interesting news story (i.e., how eager people around the Trump campaign were to embarrass Former Secretary of State Clinton who had taken extraordinary steps to hide her electronic trail in violation of several federal statutes) into a prosecution and prison sentence. Sheesh.
4. The foreman of the jury turns out to be a Demmie operative who was posting on Facebook about her bias. Tomeka Hart, anyone?
5. People like me see red when actions like this hit the front page. That is just what Trump wants.
6. This is why I voted for Trump.

McCarthy looks like a tool trying to rationalize this stuff.

rhhardin said...

I don't know what crimes I'm committing but I'm assured it's three a day.

Jess said...

As more information is available, reporting the misuse of power by members of the Department of Justice will be unavoidable. If justice is well served, the removal of corrupt officials will be magnificent.

rhhardin said...

It can't be speeding, because I ride a bicycle.

Automatic_Wing said...

Right, the law is the law, etc. My problem is the DOJ lawyers using their "prosecutorial discretion" to let people they like off the hook.

rhhardin said...

Running non-functioning red lights is legal in Ohio after a stop, and those lights don't change for bicycles.

daskol said...

Rules-are-rules only works if there's a broadly just society and works particular mischief or worse when those in charge of the rules--their creation and enforcement--are thoroughly corrupt or worse. We are definitely at a place where rules-are-rules thinking is destructive.

Leland said...

McCarthy's argument is silly. Why should the President wait for sentencing and then pardon? Why say the Presidebt is afraid to take the political hit of a pardon as an argument against the President taking a political hit now of arguing for a more reasonable sentence? Why be passive Andrew?

I saw the President's post as very smart and calculating. Most important is that it speaks to those of us that are tired of the multitiered legal system that heavily punishes some and gives incredible leniency to others. This is the case for Trump supporters, who haven't forgotten that Hillary's staff was all given immunity to talk about her illegal email server, and then she is not even prosecuted for the original crime of mishandling classified material or destroying evidence. It is also the case for many minorities that have noticed the behavior of politicians like Bloomberg to target them with excessive prosecution, while ignoring other crimes in other communities.

etbass said...

"What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless."

That's a great truth. But the argument for comparability in treatment was flushed by the Democrats when they let Hillary off the hook for numerous crimes that were flagrant and serious. We can get back to parity by marching a corps of deep state people including Clinton off to jail. Then I would be more open to strict justice for Trump people.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Does McCarthy explain why the Angry Democrat prosecutors lied to the DOJ about the sentence recommendation?

Gusty Winds said...

We will see how corrupt this 'impartial' judge is at sentencing. My guess is as stiff penalty will be imposed, and Trump will pardon Stone after the election. Flynn too.

I am so sick of hearing "no one is above the law", by people who live their lives and make their money breaking and abusing the law. These people are evil.

Birches said...

That jury conviction is now going out the window. Jury foreperson came out last night and let's just say her social media is.... problematic.

Birkel said...

After the first few days, when everybody knew the Russian angle was bull shit but before Rod Rosenstein expanded Mueller's authority, I wonder what those 40 FBI agents and 17 prosecutors did on a daily basis.

Let's ask basic questions.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

What is the sentencing guidelines for lying to the FISA court 17 times in order to damage your political opponent?

What is the sentencing guidelines for lying to Congress? Asking for both Clapper (twice) and Brennan.

What is the sentencing guidelines for lying, to the FBI during questioning and under oath? Asking for McCabe.

We are sick of our laws being used against us but to protect the Democrats.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Does McCarthy explain why the Angry Democrat prosecutors lied to the DOJ about the sentence recommendation?

Isn't it a crime to lie to a government official?

Howard said...

So now you people are Social Justice Warriors. Got it. Trayvon Martin could not be reached for comment.

Amadeus 48 said...

"What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment?"

Too late. That is what I am seeing--Roger Stone is getting "special" treatment from those hack prosecutors. An eight point enhancement for a threat that the target said wasn't a threat. Sheesh.

I hope those prosecutorial turds were pushed out.

tim maguire said...

It could be that, similar to the Flynn prosecution, it's in Trump's interestto have the whole thing roll out slowly before finally collapsing. Sucks to be Stone or Flynn, which is the Resistance's point--punish Trump allies so they are less likely to step up and serve their country in the first place. Leave Trump unable to get good people into sensitive rolls.

But the joke's on them--Trump comes out of New York Real Estate. They think they know hardball? Trump knows hardball.

Amadeus 48 said...

Trayvon Martin? That thug? I'd say anyone straddling someone and pounding that person's head into the pavement was out beyond the edge of reasonable behavior, but maybe things are different around your house, Howard.

Come over sometime, and we'll do a re-enactment.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Trump could just pardon Stone's prison sentence and then give full pardon for Christmas.

Rick said...

the prosecutors tied Stone to “foreign election interference,” breathlessly framed as the “most deadly adversary of republican government,” even though he was never charged with any such crime — underscoring yet again that the deadliest adversary of republican government is actually domestic — viz., the politicized use of executive police powers.

I think you omitted the key element.

Birkel said...

Sometimes I like Howard's efforts. This was not a good effort.

Howard reads like a non-Leftist parodying a Leftist, most days.

SDaly said...

What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.

Does this only apply to Stone, or to all of the Obama Administration and Friends of Hillary who got away completely with breaking the law? Your argument would be true if the systemic corruption of the system wasn't shoved in the public's face day after day.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

McCarthy usually defends his old buddies at DOJ. This was a bit of a stretch.

There is a pattern here. McCarthy starts off with "the DOJ does no wrong!" schtick. Then as facts come out he tsk tsk a little and moves on.

Next issue: the DOJ does no wrong!

It's like groundhog day with these people.

Freder Frederson said...

Your argument would be true if the systemic corruption of the system wasn't shoved in the public's face day after day.

And your argument appears to be: "well the system is corrupt, so we might as well fully corrupt the system and just let the president decide on who is prosecuted and the sentence."

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

I'm fine with the "rules are the rules!" and "law is the law!" approach as long as it is evenly applied to all parties. Unfortunately that's never the case. Instead, Democrats get the immunity deals or the "she didn't intend to commit felonies so it's all good!' excuse or the "no big deal about those classified documents stuffed in your pants!" explanation etc., etc. Meanwhile Republicans get their homes raided by swat teams or find themselves charged with process crimes after multi-year partisan investigations. The application of law shouldn't depend on your political affiliation.

Browndog said...

This is the jury foreman

cacimbo said...

Stone was found guilty on five counts of lying to Congress, one count of witness tampering (a tweet threatening to kidnap a dog) and one count of obstructing a proceeding.

This sickens me.This is the kind of corrupt political prosecution usually found in third world countries.If everyone lying to Congress was sent to jail - there would be no one left in DC. Just the cost of hiring attorneys to defend yourself is political punishment. That's how they got Flynn - they bankrupted him. I did not vote for Clinton, but never approved of the impeachment charade. The entire Monica fiasco was disgusting. They destroyed a young woman in their desperate attempts to get Bill. The politicized abuse of the criminal justice system to try and take Trump down is 1,000 times worse than the Clinton fiasco. That our "elite" media find Trump the villain in this scenario is exactly why so many of us hold the "elite" in contempt.

Quaestor said...

What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment?

How does the infliction of injustice on X compensate for the injustice inflicted on Y?

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

What did Stone do wrong again? Anything the D's haven't done in spades?

How is it that it's OK for the Biden family to use Ukraine as a funnel for US tax dollars into Hunter Biden's bank account?

Browndog said...

The issue is not equal justice under the law. The issue is not applying the law differently to tow different people. The issue is not selective prosecution.

The issue is one political party being exempt from the law.

The democrat party platform mirrors the communist manifesto, but don't worry. It could never happen here.

Vote for Bernie. It'll be fine.

Sebastian said...

"Clear analysis"

No. McCarthy fails to appreciate fully the utterly political motives in the utterly political prosecution, causing the fabrication of a case out of nothing, against a person whose only function was to be a target of convenience. He and the GOP establishment are still unclear about what they're up against. But Trump and Barr aren't.

The bad faith and nefarious motives of the key actors involved call for resistance.

Of course, there are parallels with Althouse's MO on this blog. She'll read some egregiously bad, poorly argued prog screed somewhere, and starts picking it apart. On the surface, we get "clear analysis." At the same time, the very exercise ignores context and motive, assuming that people are trying to make a case rather than crush the opposition and impose their worldview.

At some point, the assumption of good faith, by nice people like McCarthy and Althouse, itself becomes a form of bad faith.

BleachBit-and-Hammers said...

So glad CNN followed the corrupt FBI with their guns at that early morning raid of an old man - who would have turned himself in.

The left are corrupt. Top to bottom and CNn is their garbage dump.

M Jordan said...

My sympathy for blacks who feel justice is stacked against them has grown exponentially since Trump. The justice system in America is truly stacked against those it doesn’t like and, at the moment, that includes anyone associated with Trump. Andy McCarthy can fret all he wants and use his legal mumbo-jumbo to defend the sentencing of Stone, but it was driven by Trump hatred and everyone knows it.

Michael said...

Average time for murder 13 years. Rape 4. Car theft 1.5.

Birkel said...

Freder Frederson was pretending at understanding economics the other day.

Today he reveals he understands no game theory.

Self-refutation is the best kind of refutation.

M Jordan said...

@Sebastian: “At some point, the assumption of good faith, by nice people like McCarthy and Althouse, itself becomes a form of bad faith.“

Keen insight and very well put.

AllenS said...

cacimbo said...
The entire Monica fiasco was disgusting. They destroyed a young woman in their desperate attempts to get Bill.

Two people, and only two people destroyed that young woman -- BJ Clinton and Crooked Hillary Clinton. Without those two, Monica would only have a stained blue dress to remember the cigar holder. You can look it up.

wendybar said...

etbass said...(at 7:30 am)
That's a great truth. But the argument for comparability in treatment was flushed by the Democrats when they let Hillary off the hook for numerous crimes that were flagrant and serious. We can get back to parity by marching a corps of deep state people including Clinton off to jail. Then I would be more open to strict justice for Trump people.

Hear, Hear!!! That statement sums up how a lot of us feel!!

jaydub said...

Chuck: "There is some speculation, Althouse, that there will be no pardon of Stone, Because a full pardon would deprive Stone of his ability to hide behind Fifth Amendment rights to avoid testifying in any future grand jury investigations of Trump and his circle."

There is also some speculation that the Mueller investigation and its dozen or so federal prosecutors and forty or so FBI agents knew that the entire Russian collusion investigation was bogus within the first few weeks or months, hence the investigation should have been shut down at that point, i.e., the investigation of Stone should never have taken place. Even Strozk opined in a text to his Miss Lisa that there was "no there there" BEFORE the Mueller team even stood up. Some would even say that Stone (and Manafort for that matter) were only investigated and prosecuted (persecuted) because of their relationship to Trump and the Trump campaign and in the furtherance of a Democrat Party manipulated federal government witch hunt which was perpetrated for the expressed purpose of getting something (anything) on a duly elected president. Others might speculate that a predawn swat team raid on someone (Stone) suspected of a white collar crime was completely over-the-top fascist and purely intended to intimidate a potential witness against that president. Others, including me, would speculate that a lawfare group like the Mueller team, composed of dozens of Chuck-like zealots, liars, manipulators and traitors, can have no place in a free republic and should themselves be occupying the prison cell reserved for Stone. Or, stood against a wall and dealt with as the fascists they are.

Otto said...

Ann says"What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Hillary (sic)getting special treatment? " Didn't you vote for her?

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

@Sebastian: “At some point, the assumption of good faith, by nice people like McCarthy and Althouse, itself becomes a form of bad faith.“

Keen insight and very well put.


Agee. Excellent analysis.

Browndog said...

No. McCarthy fails to appreciate fully the utterly political motives in the utterly political prosecution, causing the fabrication of a case out of nothing, against a person whose only function was to be a target of convenience. He and the GOP establishment are still unclear about what they're up against. But Trump and Barr aren't.

Correct.

McCarthy defended the Mueller witch hunt for a year and a half, until he no longer could.

He will not acknowledge the the political aspect of the prosecution, only the "appearance" of political motives.

Bob Boyd said...

Althouse said: What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.

Stone is getting special treatment, but especially harsh. Credico said he never felt threatened by Stone. That was just the way they talked.

But more importantly.
From the article: But for his connection to Trump, Stone would never have been pursued in a collusion fever dream that Mueller’s prosecutors knew was bogus when they charged him.

Is that not much worse than what Stone was prosecuted for? The entire prosecution of Stone now seems like the "fruit of a poisonous tree", so to speak.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

This is the jury foreman

This is Stone's attorneys fault. They should have been screening jurors for political basis.

This dovetails with Sebastian's point of assuming good intentions on Dems.

Wince said...

Wouldn't it be easier for Trump to pardon or commute the sentence after the election if the sentence Stone were to be extreme?

Yet, how do you let people know at the time of sentencing that the punishment is extreme, so that they recognize it when you later commute or pardon?

Trump and Barr are doing two separate things here.

Barr is seeking to do the right thing before the sentence.

Trump is preparing the battlefield for after the sentencing.

McCarthy is arguing do neither.

Browndog said...

It's not so much that Hillary got away with the email scandal/private server. I can understand why it wouldn't be in the best interest of the country to indict and jail such a high profile political figure.

My problem is NOBODY got punished.

Every single person involved got immunity, and what evidence they hadn't already destroyed the government destroyed for them.

narciso said...

lets remember who amy berman Jackson is, she defended the corrupt congressman, William Jefferson, when he was being bribed in cash, by Nigerian bagmen, I mean lobbyists, and her record has shown partiality toward democrats,

narciso said...

do we need to revisit, the reign of terror, of john Chisholm against walker's people, including Cyndi archer, or the McDonnell conviction, which rapist lt governor was part of that charge that put McAuliffe in the state house, or the stevens prosecution which led to the 59th or 60th vote for Obamacare,

Static Ping said...

What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.

I absolutely agree with this assessment.

The problem is this sort of special treatment is not some theoretical thought exercise. It is common practice for Washington insiders to get special treatment. If Roger Stone was working for Obama instead of Trump, the sentencing recommendation would be the absolute minimum. This assumes they would have bothered to pursue the matter at all, which is very unlikely. Most likely we would never have heard of Roger Stone.

If the goal here is for equal treatment and rule of law, Mr. Stone is a very peculiar place to make that stand.

Temujin said...

The only way Trump can lose the election is if he beats himself. His phone will be the weapon that does it, if it goes that far. He seems unable to contain himself in any way. And apparently you cannot just take the President's phone away from him.

The Dems need to simply not be crazy and they could win this. They seemingly cannot even do that.

Except for Amy. She's a Dem and carries with her those ridiculous notions of how Government can make things easier for peoples lives (never in history has that happened). But she's not crazy. They have an opening. Put up Amy. Hope that within the next 8 months, Trump goes one Tweet too far.

It could happen. Crazier things have happened.

Otto said...

Ann says 'What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Wolfe(sic) getting special treatment?"

Curious George said...

"Ann Althouse said...
There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless."

Yeah, when's that gonna start? Tomorrow?

Seeing Red said...

"Ann Althouse said...
There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless."


Bwaaaaaaaaa


What about those who changed the rules for evidence in impeachment cases? What about the rules before going before the FISA court?


Which is why we need Trump. He’s helping the little guy.

Sanctuary cities.

His attorneys were cowards.

Anonymous said...

"turn Mueller’s maulers into media martyrs." Nice alliteration in the source article.

Unknown said...

Witness tampering - a tweet threatening to kidnap a dog. And the one 'threatened' did not consider it a threat. If this is the legal definition of 'threat' then the law needs to be changed.

Curious George said...

"Temujin said...
The only way Trump can lose the election is if he beats himself. His phone will be the weapon that does it, if it goes that far. He seems unable to contain himself in any way. And apparently you cannot just take the President's phone away from him."

Trump's tweets are his single greatest weapon. It allows him to get his message out. His use of it is genius. And the fucking left takes his messages and spreads it for him.

Nonapod said...

It's not so much that Hillary got away with the email scandal/private server. I can understand why it wouldn't be in the best interest of the country to indict and jail such a high profile political figure.

I completely disagree. I believe that precisely because it was such a high profile situation that it was absolutely in the interest of the country to apply the law in an honestly and proper way. We need rule of law to have a healthy functioning society. We can only have a rule of law if people believe that the law is generally applied evenly to the great and small. If people see that a powerful person so clearly and obviously broke the law and they are allowed to get away with it, it undermines the very fundations of the law. People will no longer trust the system itself. If the law is applied unevenly why should a regular person respect the law at all other than to avoid getting caught? And at some point the country begins to look like a kleptacracy, like Russia or some sort of 3rd world banana republic.

It's exactly what we're seeing in this thread. People see that the law hasn't been applied evenly, they see the purely political motives, and they believe that it's all in bad faith.

Michael K said...

Does anyone yet express interest in the jury foreperson ?

She is a Democrat activist and Trump hater from Tennessee!

Hilarious. This case will be thrown out for jury bias but what in Hell were Stone's lawyers doing in voir dire ? She lives in Tennessee for chrissakes !

Another DC jury result.

A Facebook post written by Tomeka Hart, the senior program officer for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, was picked up by multiple news outlets. But the reports left out some highly pertinent details about her background—namely that Hart is a hyperpartisan Democratic Party activist who is rabidly anti-Trump and a Russia-collusion truther.

rhhardin said...

Scott Adams is pissed off by the case and Trump should intervene owing to its being a miscarriage of justice from the start.

Browndog said...

I completely disagree. I believe that precisely because it was such a high profile situation that it was absolutely in the interest of the country to apply the law in an honestly and proper way.

I didn't say I approve of it. I said I can understand it.

Fact is, Hillary got away with it, and will never be charged.

. If people see that a powerful person so clearly and obviously broke the law and they are allowed to get away with it, it undermines the very fundations of the law. People will no longer trust the system itself. If the law is applied unevenly why should a regular person respect the law at all other than to avoid getting caught?

There is no "if".

It happened. Now what?

TJM said...

Strange that Dem's are upset, since Trump is just advocating what they are advocating, no prison time for non-violent criminals. Besides, a swamp rate that lied to Congress (a Dem) just got 60 days for essentially the same offense. If Dem's didn't have double standards they wouldn't have any standards at all

Anonymous said...

Dr. K - see Gilbert Pinfold's post at 7:05.

"Judge blocks release of jurors' names
Judge allows jurors to be empaneled after testifying to anti-Trump prejudice in voir dire"

Browndog said...

Unknown said...

Witness tampering - a tweet threatening to kidnap a dog. And the one 'threatened' did not consider it a threat. If this is the legal definition of 'threat' then the law needs to be changed.


It was a joke, they knew it was a joke, the witness said it was a joke, yet they didn't just charge him, the D.C. jury unanimously convicted him.

Witness tampering?

Stone telling the witness not to lie.

You can't make this up.

TJM said...

Inga,

Any deep thoughts?

mccullough said...

For sentence enhancements the government has to prove a fact by a preponderance if evidence.

It knows it can’t show by a preponderance that Stone threatened his friend. The context of their relationship, the texts they exchanged, and his friends testimony that he knew it wasn’t a threat means the government has failed to meet its burden to show the enhancement applies.

So it was a bullshit filing, which is why the DOJ amended it.

narciso said...

need I remember McCarthy, of when ali mohammed, pretended he was not a critical element of the first wtc plot, left the country, scouted out the embassies, and then was ultimately captured providing the incomplete sourcing for the first pdb,

Browndog said...

*Witness tampering - a tweet threatening to kidnap a dog. And the one 'threatened' did not consider it a threat. If this is the legal definition of 'threat' then the law needs to be changed.

*This was the witness intimidation charge, not tampering.

mccullough said...

McCarthy’s analysis doesn’t not discuss the preponderance standard, much less apply it to the facts. McCarthy says it doesn’t matter if the witness didn’t feel threatened but he’s wrong about that. The understanding between the men and how they communicated is totally relevant as to what was meant.

Clyde said...

Let’s be honest: Stone’s real crimes were defying the Deep State by being a Republican and associating with Trump. The rest is all abuse of power by the FBI and the DOJ. The biased jury foreman story just makes it worse. Pardon Stone! He’s suffered enough.

ga6 said...

Andy making nice to his former workmates, he has to look to the future and adjust his public comments so as not to hamper his future earnings and social position.

mccullough said...

The witness tampering provision Stone was charged with prohibits (1) threats, (2) intimidation, or (3) corruptly persuading a witness (or attempting). Of course, McCarthy ignores this.

Stone was charged only with attempting to “corruptly persuade.” The government didn’t charge him with threats or intimidation because it knew, based on the texts and emails between Stone and the witnesses and its interviews of the witness that there was no threat or intimidation. McCarthy ignores this.

But now, at sentencing, it’s pretending not to know. McCarthy ignores this.
Total bullshit.





Browndog said...

I do like how one judge consistently gets randomly assigned to the highest profile political cases.

She was "randomly" assigned to the Manafort case after the initial judge was removed for some unknown reason.

mccullough said...

It’s a separate provision of witness tampering through “physical force” or the “threat of physical force.”

Stone was not charged with that. For a reason.

McCarthy ignores this. He’s a hack

Bruce Hayden said...

“One is a rules-are-rules technical application of the sentencing guidelines, the other is an infusion of mercy by looking at special circumstances.”

“What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.”

One of the first things that I learned in the practice of law is that federal prosecutors only bother with big cases or when their bosses are pressured. I sat on a panel with the CO AUSA in charge of cyber crimes. We were off on a side track about criminal copyright infringement. And he brought us back to reality by pointing out that no AUSA would ever bring the case, unless it was massive. That was because when you run the formulas for the federal sentencing guidelines, you got probation. In his office, at the time, the cutoff was a year in prison. Below that, they didn’t bother with the case. Unless it was being pushed by someone above them, or they needed the case to pressure a bigger target.

This, btw, was how we knew that Obama SDNY USA Preet Baharra’s prosecution of Dnish D’Sousa for two counts of excess campaign contributions was 100% political, since his sentencing was under a year (of course, the SDNY USA was pushing for enhancements that would have pushed it beyond a year). It wasn’t mere coincidence that D’Sousa had written a successful book very critical about Baharra’s boss, Obama, and got prosecuted for something that federal prosecutors never prosecute for at the level committed by D’Sousa. He made two excessive political contributions to a college friend, totally maybe $4k. A tiny fraction of the maybe 50k campaign finance crimes of a similar nature committed by Crooked Hillary and her campaign in the 2016 election, that have been credibly alleged.

Putting this all in context, by the time that Stone was charged, the Mueller investigation had wrapped up its investigation into Russian collusion by Trump and his campaign. As most of us here, from the start, knew was the case (and had been triggered by the Clintoncampaign working with the CIA and FBI). That meant that ALL that the Mueller investigation had been doing at that time was manufacturing process crimes against people with some relationship with Trump. And that is what happened to Stone - the Mueller prosecutors, no longer searching for Russian collusion, manufactured a process case against Stone out of thin air. As has been pointed out on numerous occasions, a good prosecutor can indict a ham sandwich. And if they stack up enough charges, can get a guilty plea. Of course, if the don’t get their guilty plea, and instead have to try the case which was what happened here, all of those stacked on charges are going to guarantee a long time in prison - which is why they stack them in the first place.

Normally, federal prosecutors don’t prosecute cases like this, because they have a limited budget, and a lot more important things to be doing with their limited resources. But with the Mueller investigation, they had an unlimited budget, and their only job was to prosecute Trump associates simply because they were, essentially, all working for the woman he beat in 2016.

mccullough said...

The government has the burden of showing that an enhancement applies.

It must look at all the evidence relevant to the enhancement, and show that it is more likely than not that the fact is established.

Looking at the evidence, no reasonable person can conclude that Stone threatened the witness or his dog.

Someone needs to ask the prosecutors why they didn’t indict Stone for threat of physical force or intimidation or just making a threat (about the dog).

They didn’t do it because the jury would have laughed at them. Their witness laughed at them.

Michael K said...

But with the Mueller investigation, they had an unlimited budget, and their only job was to prosecute Trump associates simply because they were, essentially, all working for the woman he beat in 2016.

Which is why, in a fair world, they would all be thrown out. That Stone juror is an example. She thought she was out in public now because it was over.

mccullough said...

The DOJ did the right thing by amending the sentencing memorandum. Barr is a solid guy

Browndog said...

Let's not forget the prosecutors in the Flynn case reneged on their sentencing recommendation and suddenly wanted jail time 2 years later, which caused Flynn to change his plea because it broke the plea agreement.

Nonapod said...

It happened. Now what?

Weirdly, I think it may be a net postive. I say this becasue among other things, I believe that this has had the effect of greatly undermining the Democrats and never-Trumpers arguments with regards to anything that they've tried to accuse Trump of.

It's funny, in an attempt to protect one of their own, someone who was deemed too important to fail, the Obama holdover Deep State has completely undermined their entire legitimacy. Now whenever they try to make a big deal about something Trump or one of his associates has done, a lot of people just assume that they're behaving in bad faith. Especially now after the whole Mueller affair and the Ukrainian phone call impeachment failure.

One can't help but wonder if all this could have been avoided if Obama allowed for the prosecution of Hillary (and just pardoned her later) and let Biden run in 2016. Biden may even have beaten Trump in 2016 in that situation.

narciso said...

they needed this sham prosecution, as it was with manafort, which wouldn't have arisen without the dubious 'black ledger', then you line up parallel prosecutions, to prevent any pardon, of course khuzaimi is notorious for his target selection, he came from deutsche bank to the sec and then to the us attys office,

Browndog said...

BREAKING: Democrat candidate Pete Buttigieg has called for a new special prosecutor into AG Barr's handling of the Roger Stone case

Moderate democrat.

narciso said...


this fellow pointed out how irregular the prosecutions of Michael cohen, and general Flynn were,

https://twitter.com/shipwreckedcrew/status/1227346425287073792?s=20

so the good prosecutor deplatformed him,

Browndog said...

U.K. Daily Mail: Roger Stone jury foreperson comes forward to defend prosecutors - but social media history of the failed Democrat candidate reveals she mocked his arrest, labeled Trump supporters racist and posed with ex-DNC chair Donna Brazil

In depth look at this jury Foreman you won't find in U.S. news.

No one would know who she was if she hadn't belligerently written an op-ed yesterday.

Unknown said...

Every single one of these “convictions” should be thrown out. How they can exist i the face of the corruption that went on during the muller witch hunt escapes me.

narciso said...

voice of experience

JackWayne said...

Stop reading McCarthy, Althouse. Read the conservative treehouse.

Laslo Spatula said...

"If the president wants to make those cases disappear, he has to do it himself and be accountable."

Accountability evidently does not matter for Comey, Strzok, Page, Brennan, Schiff, Hillary, Obama...

Fuck him, and fuck his concept of accountability that only goes one way.

Evidently, the only justice would be to get those people on a softball field, and get out of the way..

I am Laslo.

Bob Smith said...

Since every conviction is the result of a phony political ploy to impeach Trump and shut his supporters up and they know it the only chance the never Trump establishment has is to either win (there goes the Republic) or lose 50+ years of empire building.

Seeing Red said...

AM
Blogger Browndog said...
Let's not forget the prosecutors in the Flynn case reneged on their sentencing recommendation and suddenly wanted jail time 2 years later, which caused Flynn to change his plea because it broke the plea agreement.

That case is getting worse by the day. What did his original defense attorneys do?

Seeing Red said...

I’d sue them at minimum for fees and interest.

Bruce Hayden said...

Something else that McCarthy, et al, aren’t taking into account, is the gross double standard. Mueller prosecutors and other Deep State operatives know themselves free to violate the same laws they use with abandon against their political enemies. These prosecutors, lying to senior DOJ officials were committing exactly the same crime that they charged Stone with. Lying to a federal official is a crime regardless of who you are lying to. The Mueller team desperately wanted to get Trump under oath so that they could fabricate process crimes against him. But, they would do it by lying to him, their boss. Just like with Flynn, a federal official, who was repeatedly lied to by FBI, led by DD McCabe, to set up their perjury trap. They, being on the side of the Deep State, are immune for being prosecuted for lying to a federal official. Worse, the Flynn prosecutors routinely lied to Judge Sullivan, and have done so for years now. Repeatedly. They repeatedly told the judge that they had supplied the defendant with all of the required Brady information. they certified it. They knowingly submitted fraudulent evidence (the modified 302s that had shown that the two FBI agents who had interviewed Flynn believed that he wasn’t knowingly lying, before they were modified, under orders from DD McCabe). In Flynn’s case, he was prosecuted for lying, when he very likely never lied, but the FBI Deputy Director, as well as the Mueller prosecutors, repeatedly lied through their teeth. Yet Gen Flynn is the one charged with lying. Not the DD, not the crooked prosecutors. Flynn.

Most federal prosecutors are probably fairly straight. But the ones who want to rise are often not. Maybe only 1%, but each and every one of Mueller’s prosecutors was picked from that group. McCarthy probably didn’t run into that many of the when he was an AUSA. And the same dynamic with the FBI - most are straight arrows, but a number of the ambitious ones who are not get themselves promoted to DC. McCarthy should understand this dynamic, having seen how utterly filthy the FISAgate participants were, as well as the Mueller prosecutors - does anyone believe that it was just a coincidence that Mueller had some of the most egregiously unethical and unlawful prosecutors in the Entire DOJ (starting with lead prosecutor Andrew Weissman) assigned to his team? They were picked because they were highly partisan, and were in that maybe 1% of egregiously unethical prosecutors willing to massively violate laws to get the convictions they want.

Bruce Hayden said...

“ Which is why, in a fair world, they would all be thrown out. ”

In a fair world, unethical prosecutors who violate laws to get convictions should be in prison (and disbarred). In a just world, the entire Mueller team of prosecutors should be in prison. Every last one of them.

Michael K said...

They were picked because they were highly partisan, and were in that maybe 1% of egregiously unethical prosecutors willing to massively violate laws to get the convictions they want.

They had to go after Flynn because he was going to teach Trump what a stinking mess the CIA is.

This is what he was going to tell Trump.

America’s Intelligence agencies are the deep state’s deepest part, and the most immediate threat to representative government. They are also not very good at what they are supposed to be doing. Protecting the Republic from them requires refocusing them on their proper jobs. Intelligence officials abuse their positions to discredit opposition to the Democratic Party, of which they are part. Complicit with the media, they leverage the public’s mistaken faith in their superior knowledge, competence, and patriotism to vilify their domestic enemies from behind secrecy’s shield. Pretenses of superior knowledge have always tempted the Administrative State’s officials to manipulate or override voters. Hence, as Justice Robert H. Jackson (who served as chief prosecutor of the Nuremberg trials) warned, they often turn their powers against whomever they dislike politically, socially, or personally and try to minimize the public’s access to the bases upon which they act.

They had to stop Flynn before he could convince Trump to do this. No matter how important it would be to do it.

narciso said...

my friend clarice, reversed a conviction arising out of the Watergate witchhunt, because the dems refused to follow basic procedure, john Sirica, participated in ex parte communication, with the prosecutors, this first came out by renata adler in 2000, mining the former's memoirs, so they have been this irresponsible for nearly 50 years,

Bruce Hayden said...

“ That case is getting worse by the day. What did his original defense attorneys do?”

They were compromised. They had helped Flynn fill out the FARA forms for alleged lobbying by Flynn for Turkey. The Mueller prosecutors, using their trademarked Lawfare statutory interpretations, made an argument that Flynn’s FARA lawyers were potentially criminally liable for helping Flynn break FARA laws (of course, none of them actually did violate FARA - that was just the Mueller fanciful interpretation that was arguably violated). Then, Flynn was charged with a bunch of other supposed crimes, and the same firm continued to represent him. Instead of withdrawing, which they were ethically required to do. The Mueller prosecutors were then able to compromise Flynn’s case by getting his attorneys to lean on Flynn to plead out to the one charge of lying to the two FBI agent’s fraudulently sent to interview him in the WH. And as a result, the prosecutors dropped their pending charges against Flynn’s defense/FARA attorneys. It was probably not strictly quid pro quo- these are very expensive top tier DC lawyers. But it sill stinks to high heaven, and all of the attorneys involved, and esp the Mueller prosecutors involved, should be disciplined by their bars. For the prosecutors involved, disbarment would probably be appropriate, because their playing defendant’s counsel against their criminally charged client strikes at the heart of the criminal justice system.

narciso said...

some of the best intel operatives like Critchfield, Richardson, Robertson, lynch were ex military, the former two was army cid, the ones who held the gehlen account as well as the middle east division, (web griffin, late in life, focused on that) Richardson was the one who was moved out in order to make way for the diem coup,

rhhardin said...

Now Steyn hosting Rush leads with Stone case outrage, following Scott Adams's lead.

Seeing Red said...

Don’t forget this:

Government prosecutor Joycelyn Ballantine filed an unexpected motion Sunday in the case against Michael Flynn for the express purpose of seeking to protect Flynn’s former defense team.

Yes, it’s true and in the prosecutor’s own words: Government prosecutors said in their filing they want “to make certain and clear that counsel [Covington & Burling] may take the necessary steps to vindicate their public reputation by addressing and defending against the defendant’s claims of ineffective assistance of counsel, and equally to vindicate the integrity of this Court’s previous proceedings, the government asks this court to issue the attached proposed order.”

TJM said...

Inga,

No deep thoughts?

Bruce Hayden said...

“ Then, Flynn was charged with a bunch of other supposed crimes, and the same firm continued to represent him. Instead of withdrawing, which they were ethically required to do.”

The ethical standard there is that counsel can not benefit, and esp not appear to benefit personally, from their advice to their client, and esp when that advise would possibly disadvantage that client. A lot of possible conflicts of interest can be waived by the client, upon full and complete disclosure. This though was an unwaivable conflict of interest. And both sides violated ethics by failing to insist on this. Of course, the prosecutors weren’t about to notify Flynn or the judge, since they almost assuredly intentionally set it up (a further ethics violation)

What is going to be fascinating is seeing what Flynn’s firm did there internally. Large firms have a general counsel, whose job it is is to protect the firm from malpractice and ethical issues. You are taught to get an opinion from them, whenever you are potentially involved in anything that might be unethical or malpractice. Esp malpractice. Much of this is essentially driven by malpractice insurance carriers. If you have a general counsel tasked with policing these issues, you get an x% discount. And if the lawyers didn’t request his opinion, that ended up as a malpractice claim, you get a Y% increase. Or, they may just deny the claim. This comes out of the partners’ pockets, and in most firms, the ethical ones can keep the less scrupulously ethical under check, again through their pocket books.

My question is how well was this policed by the original firm representing Flynn. They should have paperwork showing that the attorneys representing Flynn had taken this to their inside ethics counsel, that he had approved the failure to withdraw, and his reasoning they probably don’t. Which is probably going to be a problem when Flynn sues them for malpractice.

D. said...

Forewoman of Roger Stone Jury Criticizes Trump In FaceBook Post;
People Discover She Has Long Been a Rabidly Anti-Trump, Anti-Republican Zealot Who Ran for Congress as a Democrat and Tweeted About Stone Before the Trial

http://acecomments.mu.nu/?post=385828

RigelDog said...

"What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless."

One hundred percent agree, but I see the issue more broadly. First, there is no set "by the book calculation" in this case--as is the norm for most Federal sentencings. The guidelines are extremely complicated and there is a huge matrix of potential recommended sentencing ranges depending on how the various factors are used and weighed. IOW, it's just as valid to propose these lower guideline's ranges as it was to propose the most severe, so it was never set in stone. Second, the issue is not that the sentence recommendation may have been changed because Trump highlighted it---it's that the recommendation was just plain awful. The severest recommendation was cruel and unjust for ANYONE in this situation. It's completely just that notice was taken and that there is a new, more reasonable approach. Just unfortunate that it comes with this political complication and that those without political pull wouldn't have the same chance to influence an unjust sentence. But the solution isn't to allow an obviously unjust and unnecessary result just because someone else somewhere also had an unjust application of the guidelines. We need leadership that ensures there are never unjust applications for anyone.

Gospace said...

I wonder why the mainstream media couldn't find all the information coming out on blogs.

You think they'd be a little concerned about deliberate jury bias against a defendant being introduced into the system.

Bruce Hayden said...

“Government prosecutor Joycelyn Ballantine filed an unexpected motion Sunday in the case against Michael Flynn for the express purpose of seeking to protect Flynn’s former defense team.”

They don’t care, in the least about Covington. They care about their plea agreement, with Flynn, that his new attorneys are trying to set aside because of Covington’s very obvious unwaivable conflict of interest. My question is whether the prosecutors know something that they cannot ethically know, or whether this is a fishing expedition. But if the prosecutors are able to interview Covington people, so will Flynn’s new attorneys. And she is likely to ask a number of very embarrassing questions, such as for the internal ethics opinion that his old attorneys should ethically have procured before allowing Flynn to plead to the charge. Was it reasonable? Did they run it by their malpractice carrier? Etc.

Should be interesting.

Achilles said...

Ann Althouse said...
"If between 37 and 46 months’ imprisonment — would be just, then how is a sentence of 90 to 108 months also just for the same crime committed by the same person?"

One is a rules-are-rules technical application of the sentencing guidelines, the other is an infusion of mercy by looking at special circumstances.

What if you or your loved one got a by-the-book calculation under these guidelines and you saw Stone getting special treatment? There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless.



This is pure bullshit.

But you voted for Hillary and this is the object lesson here.

They want to put Stone in jail for what?

And they did not prosecute Hillary for crimes that would have landed anyone in the Armed Forces with a clearance in jail for thousands of years. We would have gotten 1 year for each deleted Email alone much less the obvious.

And the jury forewoman in the Stone case was a rabid democrat and clear Trump hater who commented about Stone's arrest BEFORE THE TRIAL?

And in order to get on the jury she was either guaranteed to have committed perjury or the lawyers representing prosecution and defense should be disbarred.

Everyone in DC should get the Stone/Manafort treatment.

If it ends up just being this selective bullshit then it will have to be ended.

Bruce Hayden said...

My feelings right now is that the Flynn prosecutors are going to be pushed off the case, and possibly out of the DOJ, similarly to what was done with Stone. They now report to the new acting DC USA, who was hand picked by AG Barr, and no longer under the well compromised Jessica Liu, who had been rubber stamping whatever the prosecutors requested. She got pushed out of that position in order to take the Treaury undersecretary position, and then that was retracted supposedly based on Senate resistance. They should resist - she had been put in as DC USA by the Deep State to help cover up FBI and DOJ MISDEEDS IN THEIR Russian Collusion investigation, as well as by the Mueller prosecutors. So, all Barr and his acting DC USA need now is some fibbing, or otherwise breaking the rules by the Flynn prosecutors to push them out. And I think, that it will be soon. Trump and Barr seem to know that their window for cleaning up isn’t that wide, running essentially from the impeachment acquittal until the Dems and their Deep Stae allies can gin up their next credible attack on either one.

Achilles said...

Sebastian said...

At some point, the assumption of good faith, by nice people like McCarthy and Althouse, itself becomes a form of bad faith.

Cruel Neutrality is fine until it becomes Moral Cowardice.

Voting for Hillary puts you past that point.

walter said...

Did he smash phones with a cloth or something?

Yancey Ward said...

The prosecutors abused their power, full stop. They could have alerted their line management about what they were going to recommend, and defended it in a debate with their direct superiors. Instead of doing this on the up and up, they misled their superiors deliberately just to create this "scandal" where main DoJ was forced to step in and do the job properly- to have not stepped in would have been a dereliction of their own duty to see that justice is meted out without regard to politics.

The prosecutors did this deliberately with pure political intent, nothing more and nothing less. It was a corrupt act on their part.

BUMBLE BEE said...

That's some scintilla there Barry!

Yancey Ward said...

A deeper problem, though, is the practice of bringing and trying these high profile political cases in the D.C. Circuit. I don't think you can impanel an impartial jury in D.C.- it is a literal impossibility- the district's residents are 10 to 1 Democrats. Any case with a political angle should be farmed out routinely to the nearest politically balanced circuit- it is the only way to level the playing field for both the government and the defendants. One of the reasons Comey dismissed the case against Clinton was because he knew it was impossible to convict her in the D.C. Circuit, and he was right in that belief.

Tom said...

What’s the impact of the jury foreperson’s social media posts prior to her selection that were extremely anti-Trump? It appears she lied repeatedly under oath during the jury selection examination.

Yancey Ward said...

Here is a really good take on the Roger Stone case that mirrors my own thoughts about it that I have written elsewhere on this blog over the last months.

Yancey Ward said...

Tom,

The case will likely now be declared a mistrial if the judge is truly unbiased. Stone will still get retried and convicted because he was, in fact, guilty of the charges against him.

rcocean said...

The question is: Was the sentence fair given other similar cases? And the answer is NO. once you throw out the clownish BS about "threatening a witness" - people have gotten very light sentences for Lying to congress.

Scooter Libby didn't get 7 years, and Brennan and Comey didn't even get charged. And if you're someone like McCabe you can lie to the FBI and its "Hey, no harm, no foul".

wbfjrr2 said...

Althouse: Rules are rules, go by the book.

Ignores corrupted trial, with bent judge, biased jurors (not just the foreperson), lying mendacious prosecutors.

I’d say she’s cruelly obtuse, in this case stunningly so.

As for McCarthy, he’s a typical GOPe cuck hack who provided credibility to Mueller and his thugs for wat too long out of neverTrump animus.
He’s also verbose and repetitive so I stopped reading him long ago. Same for his pals also at NR, with the exception of Victor Davis Hanson, the last honest guy there.

rcocean said...

if you can't get a fair trail in DC, then the the prosecutors or defense needs to make the case.

SDaly said...

deeper problem, though, is the practice of bringing and trying these high profile political cases in the D.C. Circuit. I don't think you can impanel an impartial jury in D.C.- it is a literal impossibility- the district's residents are 10 to 1 Democrats.

That isn't just a Washington, D.C. problem. It's the same in places like Madison, WI, or Austin, TX, as well. Local Democrats as prosecutors bring political charges against Republicans assured of a favorable jury. It can be even worse if the judges are elected as well.

mccullough said...

Maybe Undercover Huber can explain why Stone wasn’t charged with making a threat.

These prosecutors all take it as a given that Stone threatened his friend. Undercover Huber says it’s arguable. It’s not arguable. It’s bullshit. And that bullshit is the basis of a drastic increase in the sentence recommendation.

These prosecutors didn’t have the stones to prosecute him for making a threat. They would have been laughed out of court.

But now they want him sentenced like he made a threat. A threat they knew they couldn’t prove.

I’m tired of prosecutors or former prosecutors protecting their own. They are jagoffs with guilty consciences because they know what they do is wrong.

Just admit it. You guys are jagoffs.

rcocean said...

All threats aren't equal. Hyperbolic threats made by a 67 y/o lawyer with zero history of violent behavior, isn't the same as a Mob Boss. If I tell a co-worker, "if you make one more grammar mistake like that, I'll kill you"

That's not a threat.

rcocean said...

its nice you left out all of McCarthy usual "Trump is bad, and both sides are to blame" shtick.

Michael K said...

The prosecutors did this deliberately with pure political intent, nothing more and nothing less. It was a corrupt act on their part.

Yup.

A deeper problem, though, is the practice of bringing and trying these high profile political cases in the D.C. Circuit.

It was a DC jury that named Nixon an "unindicted co-conspirator" in Watergate. No evidence he knew about the breakin.

Stone will still get retried and convicted because he was, in fact, guilty of the charges against him.

Stone is a clown and lied about stuff he was bragging about. There was no real there there. I have no problem with him getting 6 months for messing around with Congress. He was not, among other things, a serious "advisor" to Trump.

mccullough said...

Now that we know the investigations were total bullshit, none of Stones lies were material.

Inga said...

Looks like there’s trouble in Paradise. Barr gave an interview and I suspect Trump’s not going like it.

Big Mike said...

In an exclusive interview, Attorney General Bill Barr told ABC News on Thursday that President Donald Trump "has never asked me to do anything in a criminal case" but should stop tweeting about the Justice Department because his tweets "make it impossible for me to do my job."

True.

Matt Sablan said...

I'm more curious about the jurors fiasco.

SDaly said...

Barr's interview was to shut down the calls for his impeachment. I don't think there's any real beef with Trump. Given Barr's prior speeches, he and Trump seem to be fully sympatico in cutting away the rot at the DOJ/FBI/IC

mccullough said...

If Trumps tweets caused these people to resign then keep tweeting.

These jagoffs pulled this stunt before Trumps tweet.

Inga said...

“I think it’s time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases. I’m not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody ... whether it’s Congress, a newspaper editorial board, or the president. I’m gonna do what I think is right. And you know … I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me.”

Barr

Inga said...

“When asked if he expects the president to react to his criticism of the tweets, Barr said: “I hope he will react.”

“And respect it?” ABC’s Thomas asked.

“Yes,” Barr said.”

mccullough said...

Trump can do his job with employees that continually undercut him.

Barr needs to toughen up. No excuses.

Earnest Prole said...

It appears William Barr will be the next person Trump pushes out of his administration -- he disagreed with Trump publicly, and Trump simply doesn't tolerate that. The alternative is that Trump will moderate his behavior, but who really believes that will happen?

Inga said...

I think Barr doesn’t like that he looks like Trump’s Roy Cohn and is pushing back, but Trump won’t be pushed, silly Barr.

Inga said...

John Kelly said Vindman did exactly what he was supposed to do.

Matt Sablan said...

At least Barr mentions it. The last administration never got chastised for speaking on things out of turn.

Matt Sablan said...

It is refreshing to have a DoJ independent of the president. Missed that under Obama

Browndog said...

Barr doesn't like Trump tweeting about the DOJ.

No kidding.

Trump let Barr know where he stands, Barr let Trump know where he stands.

Big deal.

Oh, and the DOJ is not independent of the Chief Executive.

Matt Sablan said...

No. But the investigations and application of law should be. We didn't have that under Obama. Compare the consequences Obama officials faced for lying to Congress to Trump officials. A certain amount of independence is a good thing.

rsbsail said...

I have a simple question. Why were there four federal prosecutors needed for this piece-of-crap case? Why did they need more than one?


It is time to fire about 20% of those federal prosecutors if they don't know how to prosecute a case without handholding from 3 other prosecutors.

narciso said...

as an example, when is there more than a ounce of accountability, for all these bogus prosecutions,

Yancey Ward said...

"Now that we know the investigations were total bullshit, none of Stones lies were material."

On this, I agree, McCullough. This was a case that should never have been brought, much less investigated. As I wrote in a comment a few nights ago, when this part of the investigation was opened, Mueller and his team had known for 15 months that there was no collusion between the Russian Government and anyone on the Trump Campaign. For 15 months, the investigation had been focused on getting Trump on obstruction of an investigation without an underlying crime.

In the Summer of 2018, Barr sent Rosenstein a thoroughly arugued memo outlining the problems of pursuing obstruction charges without a crime to actually investigate. I think Rosenstein realized this and told Mueller (or Weissman more likely) that they had better come up with a crime that involved Trump, or it wasn't going to fly. Rather than end the investigation right then (August 2018), Mueller and his crack team of partisan Democrats decided they needed to keep it going through the mid term elections, so they tried to get Stone for conspiring with Wikileaks, and flip him on Trump.

The problem was that Stone never had any real connections with Wikileaks. Any fool who followed Stone's tweets (I was one of those fools) figured that out early that out by September of 2016. Wikileaks had publicly announced that they had a trove of DNC e-mails in June of 2016, and that they planned to stage those drops from July until the end of the campaign. The first drops happened just as the Democratic Convention started. By September, they had dropped all the non-Podesta e-mails. On October 4th, Assange announced that he had some more material ready for public release- he did this during a news conference, and the Podesta e-mails were released at the end of business (EDT) on Friday October 7th. Stone had used the the public announcements to "predict" releases of e-mails, but he had vastly over-predicted the actual damage it would cause the Democrats- none of the releases were really damaging to Clinton- it was all basically a big nothing-burger. The most damaging stuff was released just prior to the convention which showed the bias of the DNC against Sanders, but almost no one gave a shit by that time.

Continued next comment:

Yancey Ward said...

Sometime in August or September, Stone had produced one tweet that said it would soon be "the Podesta'[sic]s" time for being in the news. There was no reference to Wikileaks or e-mails. And it wasn't about John Podesta alone, it was about the Podesta brothers, one of which was in the news at the time for being a sometimes business partner and competitor in Ukraine with Paul Manafort. Mueller, his team, and all the media have used that single tweet as "proof" that Stone had foreknowledge that Wikileaks had Podesta's e-mails. Based on that one tweet, Mueller opened the investigation on Stone, even though having contact or even foreknowledge of the e-mail dumps isn't even a crime.

Now, Stone had been trying to get to Assange all that Summer so that he could actually get real updates prior to public release, but he never succeeded. He asked Jerome Corsi if he could make contact, and it is probable that Corsi had at least one 3rd person contact (Todd Malloch) to Assange, but Corsi never received any information that wasn't already in the public realm, so it is likely Corsi himself was overstating his access to Assange, too.

In total, none of the predictions made by Stone in his public tweets, or Corsi in the e-mails and texts that were part of the record of Stone's trial showed either man had foreknowledge of anything Wikileaks was doing. This fits with the history of Wikileaks- they have run a tight ship for 12 years- you don't know what is coming until they start making their own public announcements. The Podesta/DNC e-mails were no different in this regard.

Where Stone got himself into trouble was that he refused to admit that he was full shit in his tweets. Additionally, he did try to hide his outreach to Corsi and put it on Randy Credico (who also didn't give Stone anything, even if he had anything to give, which is doubtful). These are the lies he got charged with and convicted of, and there is no doubt he was lying before Congress about it all. His texts and e-mails show explicitly that he tried to get Credico to lie, too, to cover the lies Stone told Congress. Credico told Stone that he was an idiot for not just coming clean- nothing he had done up to the Congressional testimony was illegal, so why try to cover that up?

The last part people need to know is that Mueller did try to get Corsi to plea to lying, too, but Corsi turned it down and was never prosecuted. The very fact that no case was ever brought against Corsi is all the proof one needs to know that Mueller and his team were never investigating Wikileaks contacts as crimes- it was all process crimes trying to get Stone or Corsi to compose against Trump.

Vance said...

Inga has no comment on the far leftist political actor and former candidate lying to get onto the jury for Roger Stone? Apparently Stone's legal team tried to get her thrown off but the judge overruled it.

That's perfect justice in Inga's world! Republicans tried before a jury filled with far left Democrat partisans proven to love lying. A jury who would convict on any charge, regardless of evidence. The prosecutors should have charged Stone with treason and put no evidence on at all--this jury would convict because Republican.

That's the kind of justice Inga wants in America: Guilt or innocence based on your political stance. Republican? Guilty, regardless of evidence! Democrat? Innocent, regardless of evidence! Compare Roger Stone to Hillary Clinton.

That's what Inga and the rest want for America: political based "justice" instead of evidence!

Yancey Ward said...

"Apparently Stone's legal team tried to get her thrown off but the judge overruled it."

Then Stone is going to get the conviction overturned, and Jackson is going to have to be the one to do it. From the transcripts of voir dire, Hart lied repeatedly as shown by her own social media. This is straight up perjury.

mccullough said...

Yeah, going after Roger Stone is the type of dipshit stuff Mueller did as FBI head. Let’s investigate Steroids in baseball while guys on Wall Street were getting rich by setting in motion the financial crisis.

Mueller is a dipshit. So are his team members.

Good to see Barr and Trump smacking them around.

RigelDog said...

Did he smash phones with a cloth or something? }}}}

Somebody did something with a hammer.

Michael K said...

The problem was that Stone never had any real connections with Wikileaks.

Nor with Trump. He was a crony with delusions of serious weight with Trump. He was like the guys who hang around with NBA stars.

brylun said...

Does anyone remember the “Magnificent Seven” judges appointed by Clinton? One of them was Flynn’s judge, Sullivan.

Lee Moore said...

Y'all gotta remember that this is asymmetric warfare.

If Nixon wants his enemies' tax records, he has to do something himself to get them - under the eyes of the IRS bureaucrats, who are all Democrats and who are going to go the press. If Obama wants his enemies' tax records, he doesn't have to do squat. The IRS bureaucrats will send over anything interesting without even being asked. So the question of going to the press never arises.

Want a politically motivated prosecution of an opponent or a troublesome journalist ? Good luck getting away with that Mr Republican President. But if you're a Democrat President it'll happen automatically - that's what the autopilot is set to.

Want an ally who's in the legal soup to get off ? If you're Trump your best chance - though still a forlorn hope - is to tweet*. But if you're Obama you don't need to do anything. It'll happen automatically. Did Obama have to tweet to get that computer guy off ? The guy who actually did obstruct justice by deleting Clinton emails when he knew they were under a subpoena ? Of course not. The DoJ gave him a soft - nay positively moisturising balm - plea deal.

"Tell us everything you know and we won't charge you with obstruction."
"I'll take that offer."
"So what do you know ?"
"Nothing."
"Well, great, that about wraps it up. You're free to go."

Or Awan or Wolfe. Which happened during the Trump Administration. I say "during" rather than "under" lest anyone imagine that what the DoJ did pre-Barr had anything to do with Trump. It was still a cabal of his enemies. And indeed it still is, minus Captain Barr, who is alas not in control of his ship.


*btw the idea that Trump woud have been better off to whisper his concerns about Stone quietly to Bill Barr instead of tweeting, is TOTALLY NUTS. Wanna avoid people thinking you're secretly pulling Bill Barr's strings ? Hey have you considered secretly pulling Bill Barr's strings ?

brylun said...

I wonder what former Constitutional Law professor at the great law school of Wisconsin has to say about the juror who became foreman?

narciso said...

everyone does their part

James Sarver said...

"There's an equality value in following the rules for everyone, famous or unknown, connected to power wielders or friendless."

Nobody seems to appreciate the irony inherent in taking this position in the Mueller/Trump/Stone context. McCarthy states explicitly the ridiculous predication of the entire case and then dismisses it because rules is rules. As does our esteemed host apparently.

Rule of law is not just the narrow context of rules being followed. Every tin-pot dictator ever has had a system with rules that they followed, pretending at rule of law.

stephen cooper said...

Andrew C McCarthy is one of those guys who were not too bright in law school, probably had a fairly low LSAT, but who knew how to get ahead and who eventually hitched his star to someone who made him into a successful government prosecutor. He did a good job in the terrorist cases back in the day, but .....



I like the guy (Andrew C McCarthy) and I agree with him on most issues, and he was a great prosecutor back in the day when he was prosecuting terrorists, but he is not someone who is capable of speaking the truth about what justice really is ... not because he does not try but because he is just ignorant. I mean he earns his salary but he is ignorant.

To be fair I went to a really good law school and I did not think anybody was very bright among my fellow students or among the faculty ... well there were a very few exceptions, and among those exceptions not a single one became a prosecutor like Andy (or a defense attorney, for that matter). God loves us all but almost all of us are not very bright.

RichAndSceptical said...

He might be a great prosecutor, but he would make a terrible politician.

Cormac Kehoe said...

"The Justice Department’s job is to process cases, including Mueller cases, pursuant to law." A thousand times no. The job is in the title.

B Sharpe said...

Now do McCabe.