The Michael Flynn saga continues, and it’s still very unusual. So remember: Flynn pleaded guilty to a charge of lying to federal investigators, then the government reversed course and moved to drop the charges, and then Judge Emmet Sullivan hit the brakes, asked for amicus briefs on the issue and appointed an outside counsel to argue against dropping the charges. Flynn appealed, basically saying if the government wants to drop the charges, it gets to. He filed a writ of mandamus, asking the DC Circuit to force Judge Emmet Sullivan to rule on the government’s motion to drop the charges. Now that’s before a three-judge panel of the DC Circuit, and they’ve directed Judge Sullivan to explain himself and why they shouldn’t just issue the writ. Who’s on that three-judge panel and is there anything interesting about their recent decisions? Does Judge Sullivan really intend to deny the government’s motion? Might he be trying to get certain things on the record?
Meanwhile, the FBI will do its own probe into the investigation that Flynn got caught up in, and this probe won’t be run by the inspector general, which would seem to give Attorney General Bill Barr a certain amount of control over it. And there’s been a lot of turnover at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington D.C., which handles a lot of the cases we’ve been falling. Ken says it suggests a higher-than-normal level of micromanaging from the Department of Justice.
We should talk about Joe Scarborough. Should Joe Scarborough sue the president for insinuating he’s a murderer? What would happen if he did sue? What could protect the president in this instance?
Plus: the Supreme Court hit pause on a House committee’s efforts to obtain redacted grand jury materials from the Mueller investigation, a fraud case against the Trump company and family is allowed to proceed to discovery, and is this a good time to plead guilty to a short sentence, as Lori Loughlin did this week?