The Roger Stone sentencing matter is careening into the ugly zone of dirty politics, and fast.
Aaron Zelinsky, who had been a prosecutor in the special counsel's office, has moved to withdraw from Roger Stone's case. pic.twitter.com/3mHkuvgHhz
— Brad Heath (@bradheath) February 11, 2020
It can be reasonably inferred that Zelinsky is not happy with the sentencing guidelines being questioned, and that was predicted earlier in the day when the Washington Post stated that career prosecutors were going to see this as a slap in the face.
John Dean, of Watergate reknown, says that there’s no question but that Trump’s middle of the night tweet played a role in the DOJ’s decision to revisit the matter, and this quickly. Raw Story:
“And I must say, to put the cards on the table, Roger Stone is somebody I hold in minimum high esteem to put it nicely,” Dean said. “In fact, I can’t even say on television my assessment of him, so I was not unhappy to see him get seven to nine.”
He noted that he did think it was too aggressive, comparing it to the Watergate precedent.
“The most egregious and least cooperative and most belligerent figure was Gordon Liddy, who is someone that Stone admires greatly,” Dean recalled. “He only got four years in prison, but his sentence was commuted by Jimmy Carter when it got to that point. The chief of staff Bob Haldeman, John Ehrlichman, his top domestic adviser, all committed perjury in front of Congress and obstructed justice. They only got 18 months so seven to nine years was very hefty.”
He went on to say that it’s clear Bill Barr is having a huge influence, even though the judge in the case is the one who will get the final decision.
And the Judge, if you recollect, Amy Berman Jackson, is the one that Stone depicted on Instagram with rifle cross-hairs near her head.
But maybe Trump will pardon Stone anyway. We’re going to find out soon.