President Donald Trump’s longtime pal Roger Stone might be worried that a floated presidential pardon might not come through after all. His defense team has now filed a Friday motion with the federal court handling his criminal case that demands that Judge Amy Berman Jackson be disqualified and removed from any further proceedings. Currently, Stone’s team is seeking an entirely new trial for the Trump pal turned convict, and they’re arguing that Jackson should be removed because she dared to say that the jurors in the case had acted with integrity. How scandalous! (Not.)
Stone’s defense team insists:
‘It is alleged that a juror misled the Court regarding her ability to be unbiased and fair and the juror attempted to cover up evidence that would directly contradict her false claims of impartiality.’
During trial proceedings themselves, Jackson had originally commented:
‘Sure, the defense is free to say: ‘So what? Who cares?’ But, I’ll say this: Congress cared. The United States Department of Justice and the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia that prosecuted the case and is still prosecuting the case cared. The jurors who served with integrity under difficult circumstances cared. The American people cared. And I care.’
The idea that she was responding to was the dismissal of the significance of Stone’s crimes, a line that was even parroted by the president, who mockingly claimed at one point that nobody could even say for sure what Stone actually did to spark the case against him. In reality, he carried out a wide-ranging obstruction of justice scheme meant to conceal his efforts to coordinate the 2016 Trump campaign and Wikileaks, which was releasing emails that Russians had stolen from the Democrats.
Stone’s scheme went so far that he’s even on record threatening a fellow Russia investigation witness’s dog.
Now, he’s been sentenced, by Jackson, to a full 40 months in prison for the slew of charges against him.
That sentencing came after a major debacle at the Justice Department over the D.C. U.S. Attorney’s office original sentencing recommendation for Stone, which had been 7 to 9 years. Shortly after Trump publicly melted down on Twitter about the possible sentence’s supposed unfairness, the Justice Department announced that it would be intervening in the case and lowering the local office’s sentencing recommendation. As that unfolded, every prosecutor that had been serving on the case withdrew in apparent protest of the brazen politicization of the process.
Trump has kept up his rants about the process even after Attorney General Bill Barr implored him to stop meddling. Around the time of Stone’s sentencing, Trump tweeted:
‘They say Roger Stone lied to Congress.” @CNN OH, I see, but so did Comey (and he also leaked classified information, for which almost everyone, other than Crooked Hillary Clinton, goes to jail for a long time), and so did Andy McCabe, who also lied to the FBI! FAIRNESS?’
Every single one of the individuals that he mentioned has been closely investigated, and they’ve all been cleared. He’s lying and grasping at straws in an attempt to cover for himself.
“They say Roger Stone lied to Congress.” @CNN OH, I see, but so did Comey (and he also leaked classified information, for which almost everyone, other than Crooked Hillary Clinton, goes to jail for a long time), and so did Andy McCabe, who also lied to the FBI! FAIRNESS?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 20, 2020