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Old 02-13-2020, 05:24 PM
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What happens if Bill Barr is fired or resigns?


Barr: Trump tweets on cases make it ‘impossible’ to do job.
Quote:
Attorney General William Barr took a public swipe at President Donald Trump on Thursday, saying that the president’s tweets about Justice Department prosecutors and cases “make it impossible for me to do my job.”

Barr made the comment during an interview with ABC News just days after his Justice Department overruled its own prosecutors
But what did he say? Well:
Quote:
“I’m happy to say that, in fact, the president has never asked me to do anything in a criminal case,” Barr said in the ABC interview. “However, to have public statements and tweets made about the department, about our people in the department, our men and women here, about cases pending in the department, and about judges before whom we have cases, make it impossible for me to do my job and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that we’re doing our work with integrity.”
and
Quote:
Barr said he was “of course” prepared to deal with any ramifications from the president for his comments.

“As I said during my confirmation, I came in to serve as attorney general. I am responsible for everything that happens in the department, but the thing I have most responsibility for are the issues that are brought to me for decision,” Barr said in the interview.
This next one prolly won't sit well with Trump:
Quote:
In the ABC interview, Barr said of the president: “If he were to say go investigate somebody because — and you sense it’s because they’re a political opponent — then the attorney general shouldn’t carry that out, wouldn’t carry that out.”
Then he contradicted himself when he tried to sound tough:
Quote:
On Thursday, he said he would not be “bullied or influenced by anybody.”

“And I said, whether it’s Congress, newspaper editorial board, or the president. I’m gonna do what I think is right. And, you know, the, I think the -- I cannot do my job here at the Department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me.”
If you cannot do your job with the constant background commentary from your boss, then you are being bullied or influenced,, by definition. How did this dumbass ever get to be AG once, let alone twice?

But the real issue is: what would or will happen when Trump fires him or demands his resignation?

Last edited by Snowboarder Bo; 02-13-2020 at 05:24 PM.
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Old 02-13-2020, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Snowboarder Bo View Post
...But the real issue is: what would or will happen when Trump fires him or demands his resignation?
Rudy's available.
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Old 02-13-2020, 05:32 PM
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How far do you think that nomination would get?
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:05 PM
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IMHO from some of his earlier comments my takeaway was that he is somewhat of a nihilist at his core. Which is why he seems to be comfortable being Trump's man. Which to me is frankly frightening.

So, to hear him express some moral center about his job leaves me curious. Is he being genuine? Or is he handing us all a line of bull to sound like he actually cares? I tend to go with the latter.
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:10 PM
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Nothing to do with any moral centre. He's just trying to get Trump's guy off as lightly as possible and Trump's big mouth is making it hard to do that.
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Old 02-13-2020, 06:12 PM
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Barr's lips are so firmly attached to Trump's ass that he doesn't need to talk to Trump to know how to do his bidding--he can just smell it. These comments are just a distraction.
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Old 02-13-2020, 08:11 PM
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How far do you think that nomination would get?
Collins will express "severe concerns" and then vote to confirm anyway.
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Old 02-13-2020, 08:33 PM
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Nothing to do with any moral centre. He's just trying to get Trump's guy off as lightly as possible and Trump's big mouth is making it hard to do that.
this ^

Barr's complaint is that Trump is too stupid to understand that Barr's perfectly willing to do all the dirty work that Trump wants him to do, and that Trump's ill-timed tweets are fucking it all up.

Barr understood that Trump wanted Stone to receive a lighter sentence - he knew his job. But Barr also knows you don't go bragging about how you can manipulate the justice system, which is what Trump is doing on twitter, even if he never comes out and says as much.

So Barr's right: Trump is making it hard for Barr to discreetly undermine the rule of law. Beyond that, Barr knows that he has to give the appearance of at least trying to be a somewhat normal AG from time to time.
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Old 02-13-2020, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Snowboarder Bo View Post
How far do you think that nomination would get?
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Originally Posted by Smapti View Post
Collins will express "severe concerns" and then vote to confirm anyway.
Or there's always "acting AG." Trump wouldn't have any problem with that.

The only drama would be in the way Rudy and Dershowitz would be trashing each other in the press in an effort to secure the job. Though come to think of it, Trump would enjoy that show a great deal. Maybe throw Devin Nunes into the arena as another possible--he's not a lawyer, but what the hell?
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Old 02-13-2020, 08:43 PM
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IMHO trump has to fire Barr. He has to crack down on even minor insubordination or others might get cocky. As for replacing him with anyone from Rudy to Ivanka, "acting" works just fine. No need to confirm. OTOH, why replace him at all? What does an AG really do anyway? Drain the swamp, amirite?
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Old 02-13-2020, 08:57 PM
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How far do you think that nomination would get?
53-47. Straight party-line, except maybe a coin flip for Romney and Manchin.
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Old 02-13-2020, 09:11 PM
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Oh, I think it's wishful thinking to hope Trump will fire Barr or that Barr is going anywhere.

For this job, Trump needs Barr. In fact, Trump needs Barr more than Barr needs him. But Trump is lucky, because Barr is wants to stay and fulfill his own agenda. He is perfectly happy to use Trump to do it.

Barr knows how to wield power in the job of AG and he is feared. Rudy is too obviously nuts, Ivanka would be laughed out of the office on her first day. Every US attorney in the country would walk off the job if Trump tried to appoint her, even in an acting capacity.

Barr is coming under heavy fire for his interference in the Stone matter. He doesn't need Trump to man the flamethrowers with his tweets, making matters worse. But Barr will stay put -- not because Trump has anything to fear from Barr by way of insubordination, but because Barr intends to remake the nation as a fundamentalist Catholic stronghold. He views this as his mission and this is his moment.

I recently read that it's believed Barr has put the kibosh on at least 6 investigations spawned by the Mueller investigation as well as others within his (Barr's) purview related to Trump malfeasance. We may actually see Trump shut up for a change, exactly when we wish he wouldn't.

Barr's/Trump's actions aren't about saving Roger Stone. Trump can do that with the stroke of a pen to pardon Stone. It's about demonstrating raw power and seeing how far they can push those limits. There will be lots more of this in the next 7 months. Now is the time to make your displeasure known to every member of Congress within your sphere, loudly and often. The very foundation of our nation, the rule of law, is more imperiled than it has ever been. This is not normal.
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Old 02-13-2020, 09:14 PM
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Solid post; I agree.
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:02 PM
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People on TV are discussing this like it's serious. It's just theater. I'm willing to bet Barr discussed this with Trump beforehand and told him exactly what he would say and why he was saying it. (Or more likely just said "I have to say some bad things but I really, really, won't mean them - I'm just putting out 'fake news' MSDNC will eat up".) The proof is in the twitter feed. Nobody in a position of power gets to criticize Trump. There will always be a nasty comeback. But crickets from his feed on this.
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:04 PM
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The same thing that happens in this administration every time someone leaves. They're replaced by someone worse.
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by aurora maire View Post
People on TV are discussing this like it's serious. It's just theater. I'm willing to bet Barr discussed this with Trump beforehand and told him exactly what he would say and why he was saying it. (Or more likely just said "I have to say some bad things but I really, really, won't mean them - I'm just putting out 'fake news' MSDNC will eat up".)
This. Exactly. It's a show, and not for Trump.
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:44 PM
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And Trump just did an interview with Geraldo and admitted that he sent Guiliani to Ukraine because he didn’t trust his intelligence agencies.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/13/polit...iew/index.html
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:50 PM
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Didn't trust them to make stuff up and promote lies and fantasies, he means.
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Old 02-14-2020, 07:47 AM
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Absolutely zero chance Barr gets fired. His outrage about Trumps tweets is just kayfabe to make him seem like an honest broker instead of Trump's bagman.
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Old 02-14-2020, 08:13 AM
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Rudy's available.
Rudy's lost his mind, and it's unclear how much of a mind he had to begin with.

Barr knows his craft; he has a 360-degree view of the engine, and he knows not just the engine, but its parts. He's Cromwell. He knows how to use the levers of federal power as a weapon.

As Aspenglow said, Trump needs him, and even if Trump doesn't want to admit it, almost everyone around him, including his own children, know it. They won't let Barr leave unless Barr is so badly demeaned and insulted that he has no choice.
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Old 02-14-2020, 08:19 AM
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Barr is competent and about as bad as public officials get, from a sense of morality, decency, and honor, but he only seems so bad because the rest of the Trump team are so incompetent. Barr is an average professional cabinet-level public servant lawyer with what appears to be an ugly combination of neocon and paleocon views. Most of the rest of Trump's cabinet and advisers are incompetent clowns, so someone with the skills and experience of an average cabinet official seems like an evil genius.

IMO, anyway. I suspect he's trying to subtly signal to Trump that Trump's tweets are making it harder for Barr to use the DOJ to protect him, but I'm not sure if Trump is capable of detecting this kind of subtlety. We'll see in the next couple of days if Trump responds with a Barr-bashing tweet.
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Old 02-14-2020, 08:27 AM
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I suspect he's trying to subtly signal to Trump that Trump's tweets are making it harder for Barr to use the DOJ to protect him, but I'm not sure if Trump is capable of detecting this kind of subtlety.
That's pretty much it, IMO. Barr is begging Loser Donald to please stop saying the quiet part loud, to which he will invariably respond "I have an Article 2 that gives me the absolute right to do anything I want".

Last edited by Smapti; 02-14-2020 at 08:28 AM.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:09 AM
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Yeppers. Here's Laura Ingraham getting it:
Quote:
the media sees this sexy story of Trump versus Barr but, they missed the fact that Barr was basically telling Trump, 'don't worry, I got this.'
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:23 AM
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Nothing to do with any moral centre. He's just trying to get Trump's guy off as lightly as possible and Trump's big mouth is making it hard to do that.

I'm actually somewhat sympathetic to Barr in this instance. I've been in a position where someone asked my help to manage a delicate situation. I knew it would be tricky, but I thought I could make it work - right up until the person who asked for my help blew it all up because they couldn't keep their stupid mouth shut.

There's no worse feeling than having someone like that joggle your elbow after they asked for your help.

Of course, Barr should have known this would happen, so it's not a lot of sympathy.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:37 AM
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But why go so public with this? Why not convey the message in a phone-call or a face-to-face? This is a show for the Great Unwashed, not the president.
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Old 02-14-2020, 09:56 AM
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But why go so public with this? Why not convey the message in a phone-call or a face-to-face? This is a show for the Great Unwashed, not the president.
Nope. Trump gets his ideas from the TeeVee. So, Barr goes out in public and makes statements. The statements get amplified by the talking heads and skirts on Fox. Trump watches and absorbs.

Same as it ever was.
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Old 02-14-2020, 06:52 PM
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From the Votemaster (actually from Zenger):
Quote:
[I]t's even possible that Trump himself is concerned about the optics of the whole situation, and that the President and the AG sat down and cooked up this bit of political theater to give themselves both some cover. Given how often Barr has been willing to do Trump's dirty work, and given that he got the job in the first place because of all the manure he toted on behalf of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush after Iran-Contra, our money is on the interpretation that Barr isn't actually upset. We should know pretty soon, though. When Trump administration insiders fall from grace, they tend to fall fast.
My only argument against this interpretation is that it is hard to see the orange menace allowing public criticism from one of his pee-ons, no matter how mild.
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Old 02-14-2020, 07:05 PM
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From the Votemaster (actually from Zenger):
My only argument against this interpretation is that it is hard to see the orange menace allowing public criticism from one of his pee-ons, no matter how mild.
I agree with others who've guessed that Barr cleared this in advance with Trump's handlers, who are now working to reassure Trump that Barr HAD to utter some fairly-strong criticisms or the scam wouldn't work.

HANDLER: Don't worry, Daddy, Barr knows you must be President-for-Life. But we're not there yet. If we aren't careful, the people will catch on and protest in the streets.

TRUMP: I'll just send in my troops to mow them down if they try that!

HANDLER: Daddy, you can't do that. Not until we have full control of all communications media and have full buy-in from all armed forces. You can't declare yourself President-for-Life until then. Barr is working on it. You have to let him do his job.

TRUMP: I don't want to wait! What is wrong with you people, asking me to wait!

HANDLER: (In low tones, to attendant) Bring in Hope Hicks with the bag of cheeseburgers now.
  #29  
Old 02-14-2020, 07:18 PM
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It means Trump lost the election and it’s the day after the new president has been sworn in. No way in Hell Barr is going, he’s doing just as he’s told. Including a nice little dog and pony show to distract folks.
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Old 02-14-2020, 10:26 PM
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Collins will express "severe concerns" and then vote to confirm anyway.
With a chorus of "tut-tut" from other Republican Senators.
  #31  
Old 02-15-2020, 03:38 PM
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So Barr might join the list of former Tramp minions.* I have no idea who Tramp might choose as a replacement minion or how long they'll last, no matter how repulsive they are - I avoid the gossip. But we can be sure Barr will take a break, dictate a memoir, hit the gabfest circuit, and take a partnership at some white-shoe powerhouse. But if he's out as AG involuntarily, he likely won't join the list of Tramp's pardons.** Will a future DoJ or a state AG find charges to bring against him?

* This looks current.
** Needs updating.
  #32  
Old 02-16-2020, 04:29 PM
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This is all over the news right now: Over 1,100 ex-Justice Dept officials call on Barr to resign for doing Trump's 'bidding'.
Quote:
"Barr’s actions in doing the President’s personal bidding unfortunately speak louder than his words," the group of ex-officials wrote in a letter shared on Sunday by Protect Democracy, a nonprofit watchdog group. "Those actions, and the damage they have done to the Department of Justice’s reputation for integrity and the rule of law, require Mr. Barr to resign."
The entire letter can be found here: DOJ Alumni Statement on the Events Surrounding the Sentencing of Roger Stone.
Quote:
We, the undersigned, are alumni of the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) who have collectively served both Republican and Democratic administrations. Each of us strongly condemns President Trump’s and Attorney General Barr’s interference in the fair administration of justice.

As former DOJ officials, we each proudly took an oath to support and defend our Constitution and faithfully execute the duties of our offices. The very first of these duties is to apply the law equally to all Americans. This obligation flows directly from the Constitution, and it is embedded in countless rules and laws governing the conduct of DOJ lawyers. The Justice Manual — the DOJ’s rulebook for its lawyers — states that “the rule of law depends on the evenhanded administration of justice”; that the Department’s legal decisions “must be impartial and insulated from political influence”; and that the Department’s prosecutorial powers, in particular, must be “exercised free from partisan consideration.”

All DOJ lawyers are well-versed in these rules, regulations, and constitutional commands. They stand for the proposition that political interference in the conduct of a criminal prosecution is anathema to the Department’s core mission and to its sacred obligation to ensure equal justice under the law.

And yet, President Trump and Attorney General Barr have openly and repeatedly flouted this fundamental principle, most recently in connection with the sentencing of President Trump’s close associate, Roger Stone, who was convicted of serious crimes. The Department has a long-standing practice in which political appointees set broad policies that line prosecutors apply to individual cases. That practice exists to animate the constitutional principles regarding the even-handed application of the law. Although there are times when political leadership appropriately weighs in on individual prosecutions, it is unheard of for the Department’s top leaders to overrule line prosecutors, who are following established policies, in order to give preferential treatment to a close associate of the President, as Attorney General Barr did in the Stone case. It is even more outrageous for the Attorney General to intervene as he did here — after the President publicly condemned the sentencing recommendation that line prosecutors had already filed in court.

Such behavior is a grave threat to the fair administration of justice. In this nation, we are all equal before the law. A person should not be given special treatment in a criminal prosecution because they are a close political ally of the President. Governments that use the enormous power of law enforcement to punish their enemies and reward their allies are not constitutional republics; they are autocracies.

We welcome Attorney General Barr’s belated acknowledgment that the DOJ’s law enforcement decisions must be independent of politics; that it is wrong for the President to interfere in specific enforcement matters, either to punish his opponents or to help his friends; and that the President’s public comments on DOJ matters have gravely damaged the Department’s credibility. But Mr. Barr’s actions in doing the President’s personal bidding unfortunately speak louder than his words. Those actions, and the damage they have done to the Department of Justice’s reputation for integrity and the rule of law, require Mr. Barr to resign. But because we have little expectation he will do so, it falls to the Department’s career officials to take appropriate action to uphold their oaths of office and defend nonpartisan, apolitical justice.

For these reasons, we support and commend the four career prosecutors who upheld their oaths and stood up for the Department’s independence by withdrawing from the Stone case and/or resigning from the Department. Our simple message to them is that we — and millions of other Americans — stand with them. And we call on every DOJ employee to follow their heroic example and be prepared to report future abuses to the Inspector General, the Office of Professional Responsibility, and Congress; to refuse to carry out directives that are inconsistent with their oaths of office; to withdraw from cases that involve such directives or other misconduct; and, if necessary, to resign and report publicly — in a manner consistent with professional ethics — to the American people the reasons for their resignation. We likewise call on the other branches of government to protect from retaliation those employees who uphold their oaths in the face of unlawful directives. The rule of law and the survival of our Republic demand nothing less.
So there is some public pressure, at least.
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Old 02-16-2020, 05:19 PM
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So there is some public pressure, at least.
Prediction: it'll be totally ignored by Barr and of course, Trump.
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Old 02-17-2020, 12:15 AM
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That's way too many words for Tramp to read or have read to him, and Barr likely has a good supply of toilet tissue anyway, so we know where that letter will go.
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Old 02-17-2020, 10:20 AM
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Prediction: it'll be totally ignored by Barr and of course, Trump.
They’ll all be portrayed as ANGRY RADICAL SOCIALIST DEMOCRATS looking to undo an election by going on a WITCH HUNT! And the Trump base will believe them.
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Old 02-17-2020, 08:09 PM
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They’ll all be portrayed as ANGRY RADICAL SOCIALIST DEMOCRATS looking to undo an election by going on a WITCH HUNT! And the Trump base will believe them.
Yes, that attempt will be made. But it's now over 2,000 ex-Justice Dept. officials who have called on Barr to resign. The number doubled from Sunday (when the letter was released) to Monday:

Quote:
More than 2,000 former prosecutors and other DOJ officials call on Attorney General Bill Barr to resign
CNN Digital Expansion 2017
By Laura Jarrett, CNN
Updated 5:29 PM ET, Mon February 17, 2020
...The statement's signatures, which numbered 1,100 when the post was initially published, had risen to 2,003 signatures as of Monday afternoon.
The rare statement from the officials -- mostly former career prosecutors, but also some former political appointees -- came in the wake of an extraordinary week at the Justice Department. In just one week, career prosecutors withdrew from a case after Barr overruled their sentencing recommendation, the attorney general pushed back against the President in an unusual interview and separately ordered an examination of politically charged cases involving those close to President Donald Trump.
The statement went on to say career attorneys should report any troubling actions they see to the department's Inspector General. ...
https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/16/polit...ign/index.html

Of course it's true that the Trump base will believe anything they're told---but that doesn't really help Bill Barr conduct business at a DOJ that is increasingly appalled by his Trump-handmaiden shenanigans.
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Old 02-17-2020, 08:41 PM
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[slight hijack]

I've been meaning to ask about this quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Barr
...make it impossible for me to do my job and to assure the courts and the prosecutors in the department that we’re doing our work with integrity.
How successful might a motion for mistrial in federal court be right now, given that the defense team has a public statement that it is impossible to assure the courts that work is being done with integrity by the prosecution?
  #38  
Old 02-17-2020, 09:26 PM
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How successful might a motion for mistrial in federal court be right now, given that the defense team has a public statement that it is impossible to assure the courts that work is being done with integrity by the prosecution?
With a judge appointed by Tramp and ramrodded by Moscow Mitch, not much chance.
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Old 02-17-2020, 09:42 PM
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This will bring some additional pressure to bear. (USA Today)

Quote:
A national association of federal judges has called an emergency meeting Tuesday to address growing concerns about the intervention of Justice Department officials and President Donald Trump in politically sensitive cases, the group’s president said Monday.

Philadelphia U.S. District Judge Cynthia Rufe, who heads the independent Federal Judges Association, said the group “could not wait” until its spring conference to weigh in on a deepening crisis that has enveloped the Justice Department and Attorney General William Barr.

“There are plenty of issues that we are concerned about,” Rufe told USA TODAY. “We’ll talk all of this through.”
  #40  
Old 02-17-2020, 09:55 PM
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[slight hijack]

I've been meaning to ask about this quote:How successful might a motion for mistrial in federal court be right now, given that the defense team has a public statement that it is impossible to assure the courts that work is being done with integrity by the prosecution?
No one is asserting that any taint attached to the trial process, so there is no basis for a motion for mistrial. Barr is trying to subvert the sentencing proceeding, not the trial.

Also, why would the defendant bring such a motion? Barr's pique arises from not being able to go easy enough on the defendant. That's as topsy-turvy as it gets in the legal world. Barr is not Stone's defense attorney.

Barr's corruption is already creating problems that will reverberate throughout our criminal justice system. I heard a noted criminal defense attorney say today that he had tucked Barr's 4-page memorandum to the sentencing judge advocating for a lighter sentence into his briefcase in order to use it as a basis to argue for lighter sentences for his own clients in the future. I'm sure he's not the only one who will use this tactic. And why should they not? Sauce for the goose...
  #41  
Old 02-17-2020, 11:04 PM
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No one is asserting that any taint attached to the trial process, so there is no basis for a motion for mistrial. Barr is trying to subvert the sentencing proceeding, not the trial.

Also, why would the defendant bring such a motion? Barr's pique arises from not being able to go easy enough on the defendant. That's as topsy-turvy as it gets in the legal world. Barr is not Stone's defense attorney.
You're answering as tho I asked about Roger Stone; I didn't.

I meant any federal defendant right now. The AG of the US just said he could not assure the courts that the Justice Department was doing their work with integrity. How is that not something that a defendant could argue in court: "I am being treated unfairly by the whole prosecution effort: Bill Barr just said so"?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aspenglow View Post
Barr's corruption is already creating problems that will reverberate throughout our criminal justice system. I heard a noted criminal defense attorney say today that he had tucked Barr's 4-page memorandum to the sentencing judge advocating for a lighter sentence into his briefcase in order to use it as a basis to argue for lighter sentences for his own clients in the future. I'm sure he's not the only one who will use this tactic. And why should they not? Sauce for the goose...
Aye; I hadn't even started down that path yet but it's obvious that a lot of people will have. I have no real need to think about it but surely defense lawyers saw the opening for what it is.

Last edited by Snowboarder Bo; 02-17-2020 at 11:06 PM.
  #42  
Old 02-18-2020, 08:09 AM
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I'm glad that large numbers of the bar and the judiciary are raising objections but Trump and his administration don't really deal with "underlings." They just blithely continue to issue orders.
  #43  
Old 02-18-2020, 09:09 AM
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He will go back to retirement.
  #44  
Old 02-18-2020, 10:43 AM
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Yes, that attempt will be made. But it's now over 2,000 ex-Justice Dept. officials who have called on Barr to resign. The number doubled from Sunday (when the letter was released) to Monday:

https://www.cnn.com/2020/02/16/polit...ign/index.html

Of course it's true that the Trump base will believe anything they're told---but that doesn't really help Bill Barr conduct business at a DOJ that is increasingly appalled by his Trump-handmaiden shenanigans.
Big deal.

Those 2000 names will simply be added to Trump's purge list. It will be helpful to the Trump Maga-hats to identify the non-loyalists when the time comes for the round-up.

Quote:
Aspenglow This will bring some additional pressure to bear. (USA Today)

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apenglow
A national association of federal judges has called an emergency meeting Tuesday to address growing concerns about the intervention of Justice Department officials and President Donald Trump in politically sensitive cases, the group’s president said Monday.

Philadelphia U.S. District Judge Cynthia Rufe, who heads the independent Federal Judges Association, said the group “could not wait” until its spring conference to weigh in on a deepening crisis that has enveloped the Justice Department and Attorney General William Barr.

“There are plenty of issues that we are concerned about,” Rufe told USA TODAY. “We’ll talk all of this through.”
Another list of disloyal judges who will be replaced by Dear Leader Trump.

They're making the purges easy! I imagine Miller et al are preparing lists as we speak.
  #45  
Old 02-18-2020, 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Snowboarder Bo View Post
You're answering as tho I asked about Roger Stone; I didn't.

I meant any federal defendant right now. The AG of the US just said he could not assure the courts that the Justice Department was doing their work with integrity. How is that not something that a defendant could argue in court: "I am being treated unfairly by the whole prosecution effort: Bill Barr just said so"?

<snip>
Ah, ok, I did misunderstand. I think I answered your actual concerns better with the second part of my answer than the first.

In short, yes. Criminal defense attorneys are definitely going to use Barr's comments/behaviors as a basis to argue for lesser sentences than what's recommended in the sentencing guidelines. That's the real damage here.

Sentencing guidelines exist for a reason, to standardize sentences for like crimes. Someone in Omaha committing the crime of bribery will receive a similar sentence to someone in San Francisco. Barr just undermined his whole department by making his argument for Stone. He's literally working against the stated principles/guidelines of the DOJ.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Euphonious Polemic View Post
Big deal.

Those 2000 names will simply be added to Trump's purge list. It will be helpful to the Trump Maga-hats to identify the non-loyalists when the time comes for the round-up.



Another list of disloyal judges who will be replaced by Dear Leader Trump.

They're making the purges easy! I imagine Miller et al are preparing lists as we speak.
Trump can't fire judges. Remember, their appointments are for life -- which is what make the judiciary simultaneously safe and dangerous. Safe so long as they adhere to Constitutional norms and traditions, dangerous if they don't. But Trump can't just "purge" them. They have the independence to stand up against him -- and I'm very glad they are doing so.
  #46  
Old 02-18-2020, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Aspenglow View Post
Ah, ok, I did misunderstand. I think I answered your actual concerns better with the second part of my answer than the first.

In short, yes. Criminal defense attorneys are definitely going to use Barr's comments/behaviors as a basis to argue for lesser sentences than what's recommended in the sentencing guidelines. That's the real damage here.

Sentencing guidelines exist for a reason, to standardize sentences for like crimes. Someone in Omaha committing the crime of bribery will receive a similar sentence to someone in San Francisco. Barr just undermined his whole department by making his argument for Stone. He's literally working against the stated principles/guidelines of the DOJ.
Hell, if I was a defense lawyer, I'd argue to have my whole case thrown out now: the top 2 Justice officials in America have now said the system is rigged and can't trusted.
Quote:
Hours before a court session regarding his longtime ally Roger Stone, President Donald Trump is tweeting that Stone’s recent conviction for witness tampering and lying to Congress “should be thrown out.”

The barrage of Tuesday morning tweets comes days after Trump earned a public rebuke from his own attorney general, William Barr, who had said the president’s tweets were “making it impossible” for Barr to do his job.

Trump tweeted Fox News commentator Andrew Napolitano’s comment that the jury appears to have been biased against Trump and calling out Judge Amy Berman Jackson by name, saying “almost any judge in the country” would throw out the conviction.

Trump added in a subsequent tweet. “Everything having to do with this fraudulent investigation is badly tainted and, in my opinion, should be thrown out.”
https://apnews.com/de172d45dc32ac97a179939b4a070a69
  #47  
Old 02-18-2020, 05:59 PM
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In short, yes. Criminal defense attorneys are definitely going to use Barr's comments/behaviors as a basis to argue for lesser sentences than what's recommended in the sentencing guidelines. That's the real damage here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowboarder Bo View Post
Hell, if I was a defense lawyer, I'd argue to have my whole case thrown out now: the top 2 Justice officials in America have now said the system is rigged and can't trusted.
Let's hope it doesn't get like this. The good news is that so many prosecutors, ex-prosecutors, and even judges are now openly and overtly disrespecting Trump and Barr over this.

That can give us hope that, when defense lawyers start making these arguments in courts, those arguments will be likewise disrespected.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aspenglow View Post
Trump can't fire judges.
How much longer will it be before Trump begins to try doing this? And what will happen when he does? I don't imagine such attempts will succeed, but I do imagine he can create plenty of Trump-branded chaos over it.

OTOH, if Trump does succeed in kicking out some judges of his choice, there could be a silver lining. Would this not provide the necessary precedent for a future president to kick out some of the more egregious Trump-appointed judges?

(And: Do we really want to go there? )
  #48  
Old 02-19-2020, 12:03 AM
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Just up on the AP: AP source: Barr tells people he might quit over Trump tweets
Quote:
Attorney General William Barr has told people close to him he’s considering quitting his post after President Donald Trump wouldn’t heed his warning to stop tweeting about Justice Department cases, an administration official told The Associated Press.

The revelation came days after Barr took a public swipe at the president, saying in a television interview that Trump’s tweets about Justice Department cases and staffers make it “impossible” for him to do his job. The next day, Trump ignored Barr’s request and insisted that he has the “legal right” to intervene in criminal cases and sidestep the Justice Department’s historical independence.

The administration official was not authorized to discuss Barr’s private remarks and requested anonymity.

It’s unclear how seriously Barr has considered resigning or whether he is instead trying to pressure Trump to back off his provocative tweets about the Justice Department. Barr’s spokeswoman said late Tuesday that the attorney general “has no plans to resign.”
We all know that anything this administration says definitively is almost certainly a lie or simply something they made up on the spot, so… we'll see.
  #49  
Old 02-19-2020, 12:05 AM
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He's already issued a formal statement through the DOJ that he has "no current plans" to quit.
  #50  
Old 02-19-2020, 12:06 AM
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Aye, but it means bupkis.
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