The DOJ has asked the judge to drop all charges against Michael Flynn, claiming that there was no legitimate investigative reason for them to interview him about the subjects he admitted to lying about.
In a 108-page document filed Thursday, the Justice Department said “after a considered review of all the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information... the government has concluded that [Flynn’s interview by the FBI] was untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn” and that the interview on January 24, 2017 was “conducted without any legitimate investigative basis.”
Of course, people lie all the time about things like that, right? No. The autocracy has spoken and exonerated Flynn of a crime he confessed to. They just figured out a way to do it without having to have Trump issue a pardon. Bill Barr is just Trump's fixer these days.
Here is CNN reporter Shimon Prokupecz sorting out the Orwellian logic:
Apparently the fact that Flynn pleaded guilty to charges of lying to the FBI and agreed to cooperate doesn't matter. Bill Barr and Donald Trump are determined to corrupt the justice system as completely as possible. And there's this, too:
I had to fire General Flynn because he lied to the Vice President and the FBI. He has pled guilty to those lies. It is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. There was nothing to hide!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 2, 2017
Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Elie Honig was furious.
There is some question about whether the judge could still sentence Flynn in spite of Barr's move, but it's unlikely. The more likely scenario is that Flynn's plea bargain is negated, the charges are dropped, and he goes free with nary a care and a federal pension.
Michael Flynn pleaded guilty. Twice. This is an absurd miscarriage of justice. https://t.co/BJWc9XG14s
— Mike Quigley (@RepMikeQuigley) May 7, 2020
This is outrageous!
Flynn PLEADED GUILTY to lying to investigators. The evidence against him is overwhelming. Now, a politicized DOJ is dropping the case.
The decision to overrule the special counsel is without precedent and warrants an immediate explanation.
— (((Rep. Nadler))) (@RepJerryNadler) May 7, 2020
It is indeed a portent of things to come:
I think you have to see Bill Barr dropping charges against someone who already entered a guilty plea as a preview of what kind of abuses of power we’ll see as the election heats up this fall.
— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) May 7, 2020
Absolutely incredible. The only people who Bill Barr thinks are overprosecuted or shouldn’t be in prison are people who are in Trump’s favor. This is where the Justice Dept is focusing its energies — as Barr allows people to die in his prisons. https://t.co/9IdsDU0ZX5
— Chris Geidner (@chrisgeidner) May 7, 2020
They fired an admiral for trying to save his crew from Covid 19, yet let this treasonous General off on treason and lying to the FBI......#TrumpMadeUSaShitholeCountry
— Connie Rodebaugh (@connie_rodeconn) May 7, 2020
The Flynn dismissal is a dark cloud that will hang over the DOJ until Jan. In looking for even the faintest of silver linings: the case against Flynn CAN be re-charged in Jan. when we have a law abiding President & a law-enforcing AG. Today is pitch dark. But #JusticeIsComing
— Glenn Kirschner (@glennkirschner2) May 7, 2020
There are many more like that. This is my take: Trump is going to burn everything down between now and November because he has nothing to lose. His magical economy is shattered, people are dying, he's losing support every day, and so he's deploying his "what do I have to lose?" strategy, which is to snatch, grab and burn everything he can.
UPDATE: Adam Schiff weighs in:
Flynn pled guilty to lying to the FBI about his illicit Russian contacts.
His lies do not now become truths.
This dismissal does not exonerate him.
But it does incriminate Bill Barr.
In the worst politicization of the Justice Department in its history.
— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) May 7, 2020