Bill Barr Usurped the Power of a Judge Who Was Threatened Herself to Decide the Import of Violent Threats

Presentence Investigation Reports — the report the Probation Office gives to the government and defendants before they write their sentencing memos –are not public. But thanks to Roger Stone, we know that the 7-9 year sentence originally proposed by the government is precisely what the Probation Office recommended for Stone.

Probation and the Government, however, incorrectly maintain that the following offense level increases are applicable:

Specific Offense Characteristics U.S.S.G. §2J1.2(b)(1)(B) 8 level increase ¶76 1

Specific Offense Characteristics U.S.S.G. §2J1.2(b)(1)(2) 3 level increase ¶77

Obstruction of Justice U.S.S.G. §3C1.1 2 level increase ¶80

Obstruction of Justice 2 U.S.S.G. §2J1.2(b)(3)(C) 2 level increase ¶77

1 Paragraph references are to the Presentence Investigation Report, dated January 16, 2020, (“PSR”). [Dkt. #272].

2 Government’s Objection to Presentence Investigation Report, dated January 30, 2020.

That means that the Attorney General lied to the Senate Judiciary Chair, Lindsey Graham, when — according to Graham — he told him that “that the guidelines call for 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 [yrs] for an offense like this.”

What Barr has done, effectively, is to unilaterally eliminate any punishment for Stone’s threats against Randy Credico (see PDF 243 for where that enhancement is laid out in the sentencing guidelines). He has done so even though prosecutors noted that while Credico doesn’t think Stone would hurt him or his dog Bianca, he does think that Stone’s ghoulish buddies might do something.

But Credico testified that Stone’s threats concerned him because he was worried that Stone’s words, if repeated in public, might make “other people get ideas.”

And Barr made that unilateral decision — to discount the import of threats of violence — in a case where Stone threatened the judge, Amy Berman Jackson, herself, in response to which even Stone’s lawyers agreed that the threats might incite others to act. ABJ imposed a gag in this case, very specifically, because Stone had already made public statements that she believed might incite others to take action.

What concerns me is the fact that he chose to use his public platform, and chose to express himself in a manner that can incite others who may feel less constrained. The approach he chose posed a very real risk that others with extreme views and violent inclinations would be inflamed.


As a man who, according to his own account, has made communication his forté, his raison d’être, his life’s work, Roger Stone fully understands the power of words and the power of symbols. And there’s nothing ambiguous about crosshairs.

Bill Barr lied to Lindsey Graham, and did so in such a way to ensure that the President’s rat-fucker would face no repercussions for the violent threats he made against Credico and has made against others, including ABJ.

And if he cared at all about his oversight role, Lindsey Graham would call Barr on his lies, not parrot them.

Mind you, ABJ could still sentence Stone to the full 9 years (which I doubt she would have done in the first place). If she does, you can be sure she’ll be the target of a lot of violent threats that Bill Barr will continue to ignore.

78 replies
    • Julaine says:

      Given that Hillary R. Clinton was investigated on numerous occasions by a Republican Congress who found that she was not guilty of any crime, but at most, some lax paperwork issues, I don’t see the relevance in dragging her name into this. Flynn, Manafort, & Stone, et al, on the other hand, broke the law, repeatedly. Now Barr is trying to undermine the DOJ on their behalf.

      • P J Evans says:

        “Relevance” doesnt’ come into that tweet (and neither does reality). It’s all Trmp’s vindictive wishes.

    • The Old Redneck says:

      Assuming you’re not just a troll, and are actually interested in the answer: ABJ did not put Manafort in solitary confinement. She gave him a cell with no cellmate, which is a privilege, not a punishment. It was a country club by the standard of most prisons. This is one of many things Trump has said which is absolutely, positively, not true.

      • bmaz says:

        WTF?? Harpie has been with us forever, and is about as far from a troll as possible.

        And, by the way, that was NOT prison, it was pre-trial detention in a jail. Since you are correcting people and all, maybe you should get your own facts correct.

            • bmaz says:

              I saw it. The FedSoc has been on my radar for decades. Like three decades, long before most had ever heard of them. That is a long and not particularly important story right now (it may come back!), but they are just bad, and can rot in hell.

        • The Old Redneck says:

          Apologies, completely missed the context here. That’s what happens when you read and react in a hurry.
          However, I did not say, or mean to suggest, that Manafort was in prison. The statement, again, was just a general observation that his conditions were pretty comfortable by prison standards.

    • sherry says:

      Are you aware that solitary confinement was exactly what Manafort wanted. He had his own private cell, and a whole other office space where he had access to phones 12 hrs a day, own laptop and in fact, he admitted he was treated like a rock star?

  1. Rapier says:

    As a general thing, not this specifically, there will be blood.

    For all you 401K holders, remember, buy death.

  2. steve from virginia says:

    The judge pronounces the sentence, not the DOJ. Prosecutors (and defense attorneys) can make recommendations but the judge will usually follow sentencing guidelines, with exceptions for mitigating circumstances such as non-violent, first offender, coercion by co-defendants, cooperation w/ government, etc. Judge can also add to (enhance) sentence for violence, repeat offender, firearm, etc.

    Circumstances here are just as likely to work against Stone: Jackson might channel her inner John Sirica and hand Stone 35 years and let Barr slog it out in appeals.

  3. Dee says:

    Thank you for the clarification regarding sentence requirements in this article. I am hoping the Judge will make the final determination based off the original sentencing documents.

  4. orionATL says:

    attorney general barr’s decisions on the stone case needs to be investigated by the house judiciary committee for one or more impeachable offenses. don’t tell me we just went thru one impeachment and can’t do another; that is just an invitation for wider and deeper legal promiscuity by the Trump administration. the citizenry need to hear and absorb why our attorney general’s behavior is unacceptable. the president and the attorney general cannot be allowed to bend the law to their will with impunity.

  5. Wm. Boyce says:

    I’m sure Judge Jackson will hand down a reasoned and reasonable sentence to the creature before her. The question is: Will the creature-in-chief finally feel compelled to pardon someone who might really hurt him in revealing what went on in 2016?

  6. Eureka says:

    Facebook and people who seek attention (Venn, I know) are going to be the death of us. There is a minor* shitshow-sideshow developing re a Stone juror who had to “stand up” for the Stone prosecutors via a FB post, thus revealing herself:

    Stone juror says she ‘stands with’ the prosecutors

    Ross, Cernovich, MAGA twitter have screenshots of someone with her name posting ~”articles critical of Trump” ** on FB, and more, e.g.:

    Chuck Ross: “Lead Roger Stone Juror Ran For Congress As Democrat In 2012, Posted Negative Stories About Trump Throughout Russia Probe [dailycaller link]”

    Who knows where they are taking this (they’re trying every angle). So far it seems like baby’s breath filler for the bouquet Barr’s already served up.

    The only consolation is that I can hear Marcy’s tweet-voice shredding some of Ross’ tweets basically equating Trump’s interests with Stone’s.

    *because POTUS hasn’t tweeted about it (yet)

    **such as MSM news reports re Mueller investigation

    • Eureka says:

      *clarify: the screenshots I’ve seen are of a twitter account posting fb links (where the tweet gives a headline and link to ‘fb-dot-me/rest of url’).

      • Eureka says:

        Also, I feel a Fox & Friends visit coming up, given the early hour POTUS’ twitter account retired for the night, and the subject. Eh, who knows…

        • sherry says:

          Fox toadie alert. Apparently unaware that simply being a Democrat is not a reason to exclude from a jury. Not only did she disclose her political leanings, the Stone lawyers and stone himself did not object.

        • sherry says:

          Not remotely true. The woman disclosed her political leanings and nobody, not the Judge, not Team Stone, not Stone objected. Apparently Team Trump believes that only Trump bootlickers allowed to hear criminal cases of Trump or his criminal buddies.

      • Vicks says:

        Much of the ranting is about her (on the day of the conviction) giving two hearts and fist bumps to a post who’s link goes nowhere.
        Did her nephew win his soccer game, or is two hearts and two fist bumps a code telling the -deep-state-secret-society- that the mission has been accomplished?

    • Vicks says:

      If true, according to Fox she liked or retweeted a couple of anti-trump items during the trial and it appears she was/is quite the activist.
      IMHO (if true) the tweets were moronic on her part and it’s unbelievable that in this age of quick google searches the Stone group would let someone like her on the jury.
      Something smells, I wouldn’t trust these f’ers

      • bmaz says:

        Jesus, I had not seen that before, thank you!

        It is a must read. And, if can can say so, it is exactly why I urge anyone that is summoned and can serve, to serve as a juror in a trial. Any trial. Civil or criminal. And also why I constantly scoff at people that yak that the justice system and courts are totally broken.

        That is NOT the day to day reality. Most of the system, while surely imperfect, plugs along doing what is right. This juror saw it up close, as did his fellow jurors. You can too.

        I will die without ever having the pleasure of serving on a jury; there is always one side that will strike me. The prosecution on criminal cases and the defense on civil cases. And they always do. That is okay, it is their prerogative, and I would strike me too were I in their shoes. But if you get the chance to serve, please do. It is a marvelous and eye opening thing.

        • P J Evans says:

          Most of the time, you sit in the assembly room waiting to get put in a pool in a courtroom. And then you go home and that’s it. If you end up in a courtroom pool, you may get excused at the end of the day for reasons (one time it was the accused changing his plea when he came in; another time the defense lawyer didn’t show up). I’ve only had to go in more than one day once.

        • picklefactory says:

          I once made it past pool selection and onto a jury. Years ago now; it was winter, I didn’t have anything urgent happening in my life, and I was looking forward to seeing the whole process in person!

          Unfortunately for my curiosity, we didn’t even made it through the whole first day of the trial; the defendant changed his plea during the jury’s lunch recess and we went home.

          Nowadays I suspect some activism I’ve done would lead to my disqualification, but I still have some hope.

          • bmaz says:

            Ugh. Yeah, it is never easy, and a capital case can never be. Jurors bear the weight, irrespective of the type of case. My point is just that they really do take their job seriously, and almost always come up on the right side of things. And my clients have not always been on the winning side more than a few times.

            I truly do wish more people participated and could see the process in real life. It is different than what is seen and described on the net, even here.

            • P J Evans says:

              The one I spent multiple days on had a “special circumstances” enhancement – I don’t remember more than that, as it was in 1983, and I was dealing with bronchitis at the time.

        • MB says:

          My one and only jury experience was a civil case which in hindsight, I characterize as corrupt multi-millionaire businessman vs. corrupt multi-millionaire businessman. There was a previous trial where the plaintiff had lost but the case was reinstituted on a very narrow issue where evidence from the previous trial could not be brought into the new trial. Consequently, there were lots of sidebars in the judge’s chambers where presumably arguments were had about what could or could not be brought up in front of the jurors in this case. The plaintiff was asking for something like $15 millions in damages from the defendant. During deliberations, it was quite obvious that all 12 members of jury simply could not relate to fight that these 2 businessmen were having involving huge sums of money. My initial reaction was to offer a much lower amount, less than $1 million, but none of the jurors agreed. Clearly the defense made a better presentation (they were asking for $0 to be awarded), most of the jurors agreed with them, and I relented. Mostly everybody wanted to go home – because of the numerous sidebars, the trial went beyond the judge’s initial estimate of 5 days, and after 2 weeks, everybody on the jury wanted out. I think the right decision was made, for whatever that’s worth…

        • Max404 says:

          I had the duty to serve on a jury in SF Superior Court in the early 80’s. It was indeed one of the most significant experiences of my life. Luckily we were able to acquit an 18 year old Latino lad accused of, get ready, resisting arrest and assault upon a police officer.

          It was a week-long trial. Every end-of-day the judge admonished us to “not form or express an opinion, and not speak with anyone about the case”. After the first evening of forced silence to friendly questions about the trial, I quickly realised the wisdom of the rule. By not forming an opinion, and above all, not encoding an opinion into words, I was freed from defending my opinion, which would have turned my words into some kind of a treasure that I would have to defend, rather than think more. I learned the lesson that if you listen and do not form sentences, you learn. It amazed me that I had gotten through college and grad school without that lesson. It was humbling.

          As we were led into the Jury room, surrounded by officers to protect us from bribery attempts (I imagined) and the door was closed behind us, we 12 unknowns alone had to quickly figure out a method. It was almost miraculous, how we established instantly a way of working that was democratic. Each person could speak for 5 minutes in a round, so that everyone had a chance to speak, before a discussion. We decided to elect a leader to moderate the discussion. Probably because I was wearing a tie, I got elected. We were deeply aware that our own method had to be fair for our verdict to be fair.

          Those days of not forming opinions morphed into a feeling that each one of us would have to fiercely defend an opinion against what would undoubtedly be brutal opposition from other jurors. I was ready to go to the mat to defend the innocence of the lad, who had clearly been beaten by the policeman, not the other way around.

          It turned out all 12 of us had the same opinion and in a matter of minutes we were ready to return a verdict. We felt that that was so quick it would not look real, so we decided to stay and discuss among us what we had experienced for another half hour before going back. It amazed me to hear the older men on the jury recount their experiences of being beaten by police when they were youths on the streets of SF decades before.

          We knew that that extra 30 minutes was useful for us, but torture for the young accused, so we wrapped it up. The judged thanked us for our service. In the next week, still on jury duty but thankfully not assigned to a civil case of two millionaires squabbling, I stopped by the chambers of the judge to ask how it was possible that such an arrest could have happened. He told me that it happens all the time. That that officer had been kept off street duty because of his penchant for beating up young latino kids, but that day a scheduling mistake had put him on the street. The judge said that whenever there were youths with black eyes in the morning arraignment, he usually knew the story. I was appalled. I was happy to vote for him next election (judges were elected in that district) because he managed during the trial to make sure we knew what had happened.

          It was an unforgettable experience and in fact in these dark days of threatened democracy, I think about the moments with my fellow jurors and feel a flicker of hope that democracy can survive.

        • vvv says:

          I’m a civil litigation att’y, and was very surprised to be picked on a DUI trial some years ago. I was *not* the chair, but we did acquit based upon the trooper testifying that the defendant took a swing at him during the arrest, but brought no charges therefore – just didn’t fit with his (the trooper’s) demeanor, and there was only the trooper’s testimony to evidence anything. It was a useful and fascinating experience.
          More surprisingly, my 21 y.o. daughter was picked and actually chaired a gang-related double-homicide last year. It was and continues to be wonderful discussing her experience. She’s a psych major, wanting to work with at-risk youth, after she starts in corrections; I’m a little scared about that but she did change over from wanting to be a street cop after talking with a couple of my friends …
          Jeez, I’m babbling today.

        • posaune says:

          I was a plaintiff once in a Title VII case, 2nd Circuit. Two-week trial. One of the most significant experiences of my life. (The judge was Connie Baker.) The most surprising thing? After the trial, the jury asked to meet me! It was very humbling to meet the people on that jury and to realize how sincerely and seriously they undertook their responsibility. To this day, I remember each and every one of them: a food service worker, university president, cab driver, college librarian, head start teacher, musician.

        • milestogo says:

          Wow, what a powerful article. I was called to jury duty only once but I reside in Europe and the cost of returning for a potential jury pick was just too much. However, I might just fly back to vote. I’m not particularly confident my absentee ballots have the same impact as an in person vote (maybe irrational).

    • harpie says:

      Two recent items from my personal “daily news paper” under heading of INFO on DISINFO: [I know 1] has been discussed here, but don’t know where…so hard to keep up with everything!]

      4:45 PM · Feb 6, 2020

      Pro-Trump forces are poised to wage perhaps the most extensive disinformation campaign in U.S. history, @mckaycoppins writes. Whether or not it succeeds in reelecting the president, the wreckage it leaves behind could be irreparable.

      From the article:

      “The story that unfurled in my Facebook feed over the next several weeks was disorienting: slickly edited videos—served up by the Trump campaign—that used out-of-context clips to recast the same testimony as an exoneration. ‘Wait, is that what happened today’?”

      2] [via Xeni Jardin]:
      5:28 AM – 12 Feb 2020

      OAN on at the Capitol subwa [photo]

        • Vicks says:

          I think there needs to be a cohesive strategy on handling disinformation.
          There needs to be a catchy and marketable (to the masses) way to quickly and credibly debunk this kind of trash and toss it back to the scrum that put it out,
          Without earning it more clicks of course…

        • Molly Pitcher says:

          Thank you for bringing your respected voice to this Harpie. I hope that now more people will listen to the interview and read the Atalantic article.

          I agree with Vicks that this is a major issue which needs to be addressed in a cohesive way, but for the ife of me I don’t see what way that is.

          • Vicks says:

            I think that it needs to be called out with humour and from a position aimed at making people feel “smart” and engaged as if it were a game to locate and shut down propaganda.
            Create a program/process that teaches people what to look for and what to question, show examples and constantly update with recent trends and hits so people that are into it can keep learning and perhaps sharing.
            Keep it light, educational and as bipartisan as possible and make people feel invested in protecting our country against the enemy of misinformation.
            Or something like that….
            At a minimum get people paranoid that they are being conned and they will be more cautious about what they spread.
            I remember my mother in laws embarrassment when she learned the hard way (mocked by a less than kind co-worker) the truth about the “helpful hints” she had been lovingly sending to me for years (beware of dollar store toothpaste!)
            No one wants to be the last to get it….

    • harpie says:

      From the CNN article by Juror #3

      Our jury was diverse in age, gender, race, ethnicity, income, education and occupation. I’m a 51-year-old white man from New England. My favorite person on the jury was an African American woman from Tennessee.

      The juror that is now being targeted is an African American woman from Memphis.
      [I’ll get my act together and provide a link in a few minutes]

      • harpie says:

        Sorry that was WaPo. ugg.
        This is from the CNN link:

        Tomeka Hart said she had remained silent about the case for months out of concern for her safety and “politicizing the matter.”

        The Chuck Ross tweet links to a daily caller article:
        Lead Juror In Roger Stone Case Ran For Congress As A Democrat In 2012

        […] CNN first reported Hart’s post but did not note that she was a Democrat. Commercial Appeal, a news outlet affiliated with USA Today that spoke to Hart, reported details of her professional background. Those details match up with the same person who ran for Congress in 2012. A Politico reporter who covered Stone’s trial identified Hart as a former congressional candidate. […]

        There’s a photo of Hart at the link at “Commercial Appeal”.
        Has anyone ever heard of that “outlet affiliated with USA Today”?…I haven’t]

        • vicks says:

          So now Stone is going to argue that his lawyers were incompetent ?
          All of that stuff is on the first page of a google search, i’m pretty sure they are the idiots if Stone’s team is claiming this was a trick.

          • harpie says:

            Well, funny you should ask, Josh Gerstein is saying she announced it in court!

            1:14 PM · Feb 13, 2020

            I wonder if we end up seeing an ineffective assistance of counsel claim from Stone before sentencing next week, since his lawyers did not object to or unilaterally strike this juror, who announced in court she’d run for Congress. This was no mystery.

            They probably decided not to object, for precisely this reason: so that they could use the info like this, if necessary.

            • vicks says:

              But did she fess up and say she didn’t like racists?
              I think that was the (old) posting that had them calling her an anti-trumper.
              I did read that she had been a foreperson on another jury a few years back.
              I would assume experience would be another standard screening question?
              If so, that should have been another red flag for team Stone.
              Maybe they really are incompetent?

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              A questionable or high-risk strategy is not the same as ineffective assistance of counsel.

              Unless a juror lied and actively hid her past, for example, if you reviewed it or had the opportunity to do so, and accepted a juror without objection, you’ve made your bed.

              Not that defense counsel won’t throw the kitchen sink into their arguments, but few of them will go anywhere.

              Apart from the normal flailing that seems to happen when defense counsel has a weak case, much of this is a delaying tactic, hoping that Uncle Donny will save the day. Everyone seems to think that’s exactly what will happen. Which makes me curious.

        • harpie says:

          Here’s more about The Memphian Commercial Appeal-a long time Memphis paper, in the USA Today network. It seems like James Fallows got in a little pickle with them recently when he wrote about a new on-line only local competitor:
          In Defense of The Commercial Appeal

          Clicking through to the original article about the new Daily Memphian:

          How it is being received across Memphis’s racial divide: Barnes and Cates, and most members of their board, are white. Most of Memphis’s population is black. What are its intentions for covering the area’s African-American community, and what have been its results? […] I asked Otis Sanford, one of the area’s best-known African-American journalists, who [harpie: USED TO WRITE FOR THE COMMERCIAL APPEAL! , but] now writes a featured column for The Daily Memphian, about the site’s reach across the racial divide.

          “I don’t think that The Daily Memphian has quite resonated yet with the African-American community,” he said. “That’s not to say it has not registered at all. But by and large it has not penetrated the market. They are working on it, and they are doing a relatively decent job so far.” […]

    • harpie says:

      …much more on this.
      Marcy retweeted Andrew Fleishman, who is going through the jury selection transcript:
      3:15 PM · Feb 13, 2020

      [Stone’s lawyer] asks [Hart] how she feels about that, there’s an objection.

      Stone’s lawyer absolutely knows that she’s a lifelong Democrat who has political aspirations. He’s asked if he wants to strike for cause.

      He says no. [much more in the thread]

      • harpie says:

        That thread starts with a tweet from CERNOVICH, which Fleishman demolishes. Afterwards, he writes:

        Truly, I almost never think a defamation suit is called for. But Cernovich, a trained lawyer, snipped out the part of the transcript that would clear this juror and accused her of a crime, and now she’s going to spend the next few years checking over her shoulder.

        It’s a really crappy, callous thing to do and I hope he comes to reckon with these choices he’s making. […]

        “and now she’s going to spend the next few years checking over her shoulder.”

        [This is still an ongoing thread, where Cernovich seems to be changing his “arguments” as he goes along…]

    • Eureka says:

      Stone juror tells Reuters today they/he feel[s] “a little bit betrayed”:

      Seth Cousins, who served as a juror in Stone’s trial, told Reuters he was “appalled” by Trump’s remarks.

      “It feels like something outrageous is going on,” Cousins said in an interview.

      “I think it is appalling for the president of the United States to be attacking American citizens for patriotically fulfilling their duties,” he said.


      In his interview, Cousins said the jury had not discussed politics.

      “As a whole group, and in every single conversation that I was involved in or overheard, we never discussed politics as a jury. I have no idea what anyone’s political affiliation is,” he said.

      The jurors have kept in touch and followed developments, Cousins said, adding they all “echo the sense of being appalled. Maybe a little bit betrayed.”

      Barr: Won’t be ‘bullied’ by Trump on Stone case; jurors appalled – Reuters

  7. Manqueman says:

    In Graham’s (wholly undeserved) defense, his vile behavior, his failure as a leader, his shiftiness, plays very well with the voters back home. It’s clear from his career that his principles are limited to saying and doing everything needed to remain in office to serve GOP special interests. That his servility to Trump plays well, TBH, says at least as much about the voters as it does about him.

    • OmAli says:

      The base could put a stop to this pretty quickly, I think. The R Senators are beneath contempt, but they live in terror of the bottom as well as the top of the food chain.

  8. klynn says:

    Thank you for this post. I wish more people would put this together.

    Hope this post gets lots of attention.

  9. earlofhuntingdo says:

    Bill Barr may show up on March 31st and he may not. If he does, he will appear as one of Monty Python’s cardinals from the Spanish Inquisition. He’ll interrogate congresscritters, entertain but not answer their questions, and deliver a few soundbites. Then he will wander back to his lair, mumbling about having picked a few pawpaws with his bear claws.

    Power he takes seriously, but not Congress. If he can’t be removed, the House needs to keep at him, to lessen his ability to destroy things.

    • BobCon says:

      If they’re going to delay this for so long, they may as well put in place new rules for questioning closer to what House Intelligence used for Ukraine. Hold the hearing at the subcommittee level, rather than committee, so it involves fewer members and less of a blob, allow for longer questioning by members, and most important allow for long leadoff questioning by counsel.

      Pelosi pushes back against public hearings because she doesn’t like the mess they become when the GOP acts in bad faith, but she doesn’t use her power to set up a system which is fair but also undercuts bad faith actors. She already has the example of McConnell to push back against — he writes new rules to rig the game, she would simply be allowing both sides to have more time for substantive questioning. Which of course the GOP won’t like, because they want to avoid any substance.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        I think there’s a certain amount of “don’t wanna know” to the Dem establishment, too.

        If the public knows you know, it creates the expectation that you’ll do something about it. That does not seem to be an establishment Dem priority.

  10. harpie says:

    News about Jessie Liu:
    10:49 AM · Feb 13, 2020

    NEWS — Jessie Liu submitted her resignation to the Treasury Department yesterday, per an official. It was effective yesterday evening. Trump’s decision to abruptly withdraw her nomination was directly tied to her former job — running the office that oversaw Stone’s prosecution.

    Liu was scheduled to have her confirmation hearing today. Yesterday she resigned from her temporary position at Treasury, which she was doing until she got confirmed. In what many saw as unusual, she left U.S. attorney’s office before being confirmed. [CNN]

    … to which Matthew Miller responds:
    11:02 AM · Feb 13, 2020

    Complete brazenness about what they are up to here:
    “The problem wasn’t that she necessarily did anything wrong, one person familiar with the thinking said, but that she didn’t do more to get involved in those cases.”

    They will accept nothing less than complete sycophancy [psychophancy?]

    • harpie says:

      NBC News has more:
      Former US Attorney who oversaw Roger Stone case resigns
      President Trump had yanked Jessie Liu’s nomination for a top spot at the Treasury Department earlier this week.
      Feb. 13, 2020, 11:30 AM EST
      The Mueller cases she took over included not just Stone, but also Flynn.

      A source told NBC News earlier this week that after Liu was nominated, she told the lawyers in her office that she would stay put until she was confirmed. However, Attorney General William Barr asked her to leave around Feb. 1 to ensure continuity in the office, and she agreed

  11. Zirc says:

    I am mystified by Barr’s behavior/actions. Surely, he knows he’s putting himself at some legal risk. He must be certain Trump will win in November. If Trump doesn’t win, he’ll have a lot of explaining to do, and if anything he’s done qualifies as illegal as opposed to merely precedent setting norm breaking, he himself could be petitioning a federal judge for lenience. If he’s throwing the dice, he has some huge cojones.


  12. Scott says:

    Lol America Karma’s a bitch

    [Welcome back to emptywheel. Please use a more differentiated username when you comment next as we have several community members named “Scott” or “Scot.” This is a second request. Any additional comments without differentiation will remain in moderation. This is also your fourth username at this site. Sockpuppeting is a no-no; pick a variant of this particular screenname. Thanks. /~Rayne]

  13. Thomasa says:

    Last evening at our library branch, I recapped the Angola civil war during a presentation about knock on effects of the Viet Nam war. Several familiar names came up: Barr, Stone, Manifort and Kelly.

    The Angola civil was was a long and dirty business that flared up in 1975 involving Russia, China, Cuba, and covert American opposition. At that time Wm. Barr was employed by the CIA as a Chinese analyst.

    I was a soldier assigned to MACV in Saigon in 1969 and was a recruitment target for mercenary operations in Angola in 1976. I declined. At that time GHW Bush was CIA director. A fellow veteran approached me afterward to tell me that he had been similarly approached at about the same time.

    This may be old news on this forum but it raised more than a few eyebrows last evening. Stone and Manifort were partners in the lobbying firm Black, Manifort, Stone & Kelly. Angolan General Jonas Savimbi retained the firm for $5MM when he needed money to continue his military operations. His first trips to Washington were when GHW Bush was President and Barr was Deputy AG. The effort netted him $60MM or so per year. Subsequent trips in ’91, ’92 were when Barr was Atty. General. The same Lobbying firm was retained on these trips. Perhaps the dots connect, perhaps they don’t but Barr’s support for Roger Stone may have more than one motivation. I would guess we’ll see some action on the Manifort front as well. They’ve fed at the same trough for a long time.

  14. harpie says:

    WaPo’s Spencer Hsu:
    5:25 PM · Feb 13, 2020

    BREAKING Chief U.S. District Judge Beryl A. Howell of Washington also issued a rare statement responding to President Trump’s attacks on Stone’s sentencing judge, U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, and defending the integrity of the courts. [screenshot]

    Judge Howell: “The Judges of this Court base their sentencing decisions on careful consideration of the actual record in the case before them … Public criticism or pressure is not a factor.”

    Judges also rely, Howell said, on “the applicable sentencing guidelines and statutory factors; the submissions of the parties, the Probation Office and victims; and their own judgment and experience.”

    • Eureka says:

      Wow, a remarkable statement from Judge Howell. BRAVA for referencing “…and victims” [All of America: **raises hand** ].

  15. Zinsky says:

    If you haven’t seen the documentary, Get Me Roger Stone, watch it and come back and tell me why this creep shouldn’t spend the rest of his repulsive life in prison…..

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