First, a correction to last week’s show: Ken and Josh talked about Attorney General Bill Barr’s House committee testimony in which he said federal prosecutors had brought charges he didn’t think any current US attorney would bring and that this prosecution was for “some esoteric, made-up crime,” not a “meat and potatoes crime.” Well, we mixed up which prosecution Barr was referring to. Barr was first asked about Roger Stone, but he was referring there to the Michael Flynn prosecution. So, we’ll take that one this week. Was Michael Flynn prosecuted for an esoteric, made-up crime for lying to the FBI about his contact with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the transition? Ken White says he would prefer it if charging people for lying to federal investigators wasn’t routine for the Justice Department, but it is. It is very routine, and the Justice Department routinely rejects exactly this argument that Barr made.
So, those charges against Michael Flynn — they still haven’t been dropped. Next week, all of the judges on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals will consider whether Long Suffering Federal Judge Emmet Sullivan should be forced to grant the government’s motion to dismiss the charges against Flynn.
Meanwhile, President Trump is fighting a subpoena for his financial records from Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance pursuant to a grand jury investigation. The Supreme Court ruled that President Trump doesn’t have some special right to fight this subpoena but he still has the normal rights any person would have to fight a subpoena. As part of the court filings around that fight, there’s some indication about what the DA might be looking into. Even though the president is fighting the subpoena with tools available to everyone, there’s still something unique about it. But that might not last when Trump is no longer president. Why don’t more defendants use the strategies and the objections Trump is making here?
Plus: the federal government backs down from a fight over Michael Cohen’s tell-all book, President Trump isn’t abiding by a ruling that says he must unblock people on Twitter, and did you know the value of Rudy Giuliani’s legal counsel is “unascertainable”?