Joyce Vance explained to Joy Reid about the delicate balance the Department of Justice has to maintain in the January 6th investigation.
"There is a concept in the law about conspiracies where sometimes you have one big conspiracy. Everybody is part of it. They all enter it into the same agreement. They're all working together. on other occasions, you can have multiple conspiracies that can be overlapping but they can have different objectives. And without boring people and causing them to turn off their TVs, I'll say there are legal implications for prosecutors in getting that right," she said.
"You can have cases get reversed on appeal if you're not careful about identifying conspiracies and charging them properly and so that's an issue I think DoJ faces here. You do such a great job of laying out all of the players and also the folks in the Willard war room and the question of how much command and control the former president had, so I have discussed before, I'm very empathetic to the situation DoJ's prosecutors are in. If they're going to charge, they've got to get it right, not just complicated legal issues but this factual overlay which, as we look at this evidence, I think we all have a little bit of confirmation bias because we don't like what Donald Trump did.
"We saw in real time he tried to commit an insurrection against Americans. When a jury hears this evidence, the judge will instruct them that they have to start with the presumption of innocence and juries take that very seriously. And the government will have to present specific evidence on specific charges and get it right but increasingly, between the January 6th committee's work and this increasing pile of cooperators, DoJ is developing, it looks like progress is being made."
"I've had almost no empathy for the DoJ, but you've been great coming on and being like 'Hold on a second,' " Reid said.
"We saw in Michigan that what looked like an airtight conspiracy, when it gets in the hands of a jury, anything from nullification to just a case that wasn't put together, right? Anything could happen in that range, they didn't get a conviction there. You saw the backdown in New York, people were very upset about by DA Alvin Bragg who was sort of 'hold your horses,' but he did say this, weekend, no, they're still investigating. if you aim for the king, you better be accurate because the risk is, you jump out there, you do some sort of a prosecution and you lose."
"I think that's right. Prosecutors have a serious obligation to evaluate evidence before they indict and this is the America we want to live in and in this Texas case, this prosecution I know you'll talk about later of the attempted prosecution of the woman for an abortion when Texas law didn't make that a charge that could be brought, that's reprehensible and prosecutors shouldn't engage in that sort of conduct subjecting people to arrest because they have the power to do that even when their case isn't any good.
"We don't want to be that America. We want to be an America where a former president is held accountable properly for his acts and that means we're living through tough times and difficult times. There are some fair and legitimate questions about Merrick Garland but increasingly, we see a lot of work going on behind the surface and I think, unfortunately for those of us living through it, we have to wait a little bit longer, but I think we should have confidence that the system is doing its job."