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Barr tells Trump to stop tweeting about Stone case; juror calls it 'appalling'

40 Comments
By Sarah N Lynch and David Morgan

U.S. Attorney General William Barr said on Thursday that President Donald Trump's attacks on prosecutors, the judge and jurors in the trial of a longtime adviser undermined the Justice Department's work, adding he would not be "bullied" by anyone.

In an ABC interview, Barr, the top U.S. law enforcement officer, said Trump's criticism of those involved in the case of Roger Stone "make it impossible for me to do my job."

Barr spoke after his Justice Department abandoned prosecutors' initial recommendation to give the veteran Republican operative seven to nine years in prison, prompting all four prosecutors to quit the case.

Trump has weighed in on Twitter all week with comments that have aroused concerns his administration is weakening the rule of law.

"I'm not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody ... whether it's Congress, a newspaper editorial board or the president," Barr said.

"I cannot do my job here at the department with a constant background commentary that undercuts me," Barr said, adding: "I think it's time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases."

The White House said Trump was not bothered by Barr's remarks.

"The President has full faith and confidence in Attorney General Barr to do his job and uphold the law," White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham said in a prepared statement.

Stone was found guilty in November on seven counts of lying to Congress, obstruction and witness tampering.

Trump posted a Fox News story on Thursday that accused some of the jurors of political bias. "This is not looking good for the 'Justice' Department," he tweeted.

Seth Cousins, who served as a juror in Stone's trial, told Reuters he was "appalled" by Trump's remarks.

"It feels like something outrageous is going on," Cousins said in an interview. "I think it is appalling for the president of the United States to be attacking American citizens for patriotically fulfilling their duties."

TWITTER ATTACKS

The Twitter attacks started on Tuesday when Trump criticized U.S. prosecutors in the case stemming from former Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation detailing Russian interference in the 2016 election to benefit Trump's candidacy.

The Republican president called their sentencing recommendation for Stone, whose friendship with Trump dates back decades, "horrible" and a "miscarriage of justice."

Trump on Wednesday thanked Barr, whom he appointed last year, for "taking charge" of the case. He also tweeted criticism of U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson, who is scheduled to sentence Stone on Feb. 20.

Both Trump and the Justice Department said they had not had direct talks on the matter.

Former U.S. Attorney Jessie Liu, who oversaw the Stone case, resigned from the Treasury Department this week after the White House dropped her nomination for a post overseeing economic sanctions, a source confirmed to Reuters on Thursday.

House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Trump's comments on the Stone case amounted to interference in the workings of the U.S. government's judicial branch.

"This is an abuse of power - that the president is again trying to manipulate federal law enforcement to serve his political interest," Pelosi, a Democrat, told a news conference."This is not what America is about. It is so wrong."

Chief Judge Beryl Howell, the top judge on the U.S. District Court in Washington on which Jackson sits, also weighed in on Thursday, saying in an unusual public statement that public criticism "is not a factor" in sentencing decisions.

In his interview, Cousins said politics was never discussed as the jury deliberated.

"As a whole group, and in every single conversation that I was involved in or overheard, we never discussed politics as a jury. I have no idea what anyone's political affiliation is," he said.

The jurors have kept in touch since the trial and followed developments, Cousins said, adding they all "echo the sense of being appalled. Maybe a little bit betrayed."

Grant Smith, one of Stone's lawyers, told Reuters that the defense team was examining jurors' social media posts.

Early on in the jury selection process, Jackson overruled Stone's lawyers when they tried to strike prospective jurors who worked for the government or who had opinions about Trump.

All 10 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee called on Thursday for an investigation, but the panel's Republican chairman, Lindsey Graham, has dismissed that idea.

He wrote on Twitter that he hoped the court would take the jury allegations seriously if the report was accurate, calling it "not fair."

Other Republicans have largely shrugged off the furor.

"I'll leave it up to a judge to decide whether a juror is biased or not," Senator Chuck Grassley said.

Stone was one of several close Trump associates charged in Mueller's probe, which Trump called a "witch hunt." His supporters are pushing for a presidential pardon, which Trump has declined to comment on.

Trump was acquitted in the Republican-led Senate last week on impeachment charges brought by the Democratic-led House accusing him of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress stemming from his dealings with Ukraine.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2020.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

40 Comments

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What Mr. Barr really means is "stop drawing attention to everything I'm trying to do politicize DOJ".

5 ( +9 / -4 )

"I think it's time to stop the tweeting about Department of Justice criminal cases," Barr added.

I can't believe a word Barr or anyone from the Trump admin says. There has never been a time for a president, impeached or not, to tweet or personally involve his office in DOJ cases. But it's the Trump era, an era when the the Constitution's balance and separation are being undermined each day he and his family are in office.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

In the end Stone will just be another guilty Trump loser in jail.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Trump likes to bypass the media with his tweets. But I agree with Barr here.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

What’s wrong with a president using the DOJ for his own personal benefit?

Nothing, I tell ye! Because “wingman”.

/s

9 ( +10 / -1 )

the guy said a President has NEVER personally gotten involved in a DOJ case. There it is.

deflect all you want, it happened.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

But as the election heated up, Obama wouldn’t stop:

Lynch said that she also had a discussion with the White House Counsel after she testified, and that during this discussion he acknowledged that the comments should not have happened. However, former President Obama again made public comments about the Midyear investigation in an interview with FOX News Sunday on April 10, 2016. Obama stated that while former Secretary Clinton had been “careless” in managing her emails while she was Secretary of State, she would never intentionally do anything to endanger the security of the United States with her emails.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

Oh wow, and here when I thought you were saying it's a conspiracy, you were actually saying it's a CONSPIRACY!

...at least, that's the theory right.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

U.S. Attorney General William Barr on Thursday pushed back against Donald Trump after the president's attacks on the prosecutors, judge and jury in the trial of a longtime adviser, saying Trump should stop tweeting about Justice Department cases and that he would not be "bullied" by anyone.

Barr, the top U.S. law enforcement officer, said in an ABC interview that Trump's tweets "make it impossible for me to do my job."

Hey Trumpers, your go-to guy, hero, Trump confidante Barr - just dissed your Sainted Leader - what do you think about that?

So does Barr join Bolton in the "hero" yesterday, "Backstabber" today category?

Let us know...

5 ( +6 / -1 )

so dont act like this has never happened before.

If its a problem now, it would have been a problem then. And it wasnt a problem, so it must be allowed for a President to speak out when they feel the DOJ isnt doing their job correctly.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

Not talking about emails. Talking about the previous resident of the White House and his public statements about an active DOJ case. giving his personal preference as to how the case should be handled. I was told this has never happened, and it did and I gave proof.

try again.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Barr told him to shut up my bet is that he wont Donny cant help himself....

6 ( +7 / -1 )

All his life chip-off-the-old-block Trump has always had a very problematic relationship with the law, especially staying on the right side of it. As "whiteman with money" he learned to play his "get-out-of-jail-free" cards while litigating his way through his half-baked business deals and murky private life. As the teflon-coated Potus, Trump has taken every advantage of the impunity granted him and although he now appears virtually unassailable, his life-long addiction to pushing envelopes will one day surely be his ultimate undoing. Under the slimy Stone scandal the contours of a venal Barr beholden to a corrupt boss is beginning to take shape. Could the AG and HMV be the final straws that will break the back of the public's patience?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Trump scolded by his own!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Everything is fine, you all can go back to hating Barr:

“Barr and Trump are united in their belief that Trump and his allies have been unfairly targeted, Fox News is told. Republicans have long pointed to the fact that prominent anti-Trump figures, including former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, have avoided prosecution even though they have admittedto leaking and lying to federal investigators.”

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, have avoided prosecution

Another Republican lied? Jeeze. It's like it's in your blood or something.

Stone is being sentenced for 7-9 years as per sentencing guidelines, and I suspect the witness tampering and obstruction are the big ones. Telling me he only deserves a year makes witness tampering a home run for any guilty party as the upside is huge and the downside is only 12 months.

Stone will see the inside of a prison where he belongs as he is guilty. If you have a problem with that, move to another country.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

For a moment I thought Barr had grown a backbone and was trying to develop integrity!!

But then I realized its just a pathetic attempt to prove that he has a role and powers beyond being Donny's pooch!!!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Lou Cobb called Barr a part of the 'Deep State'.

Now thats the type of compliment Barr hasn't got for a long long time.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

FoxNews.com is all over the board tonight with the headlines:

Chris Wallace: Trump should not have weighed in on Barr, Roger Stone sentence

Gov. Mike Huckabee: Trump would be doing all Americans a favor by commuting Roger Stone's sentence

Gregg Jarrett: Barr shouldn’t criticize Trump’s Roger Stone tweet – AG should clean up Justice Department mess

Mitch McConnell on Barr criticism of Trump tweets: 'I think the president should listen to his advice'

Newt Gingrich: Prosecutors' conduct in Roger Stone case 'truly absurd' and extraordinary

Pelosi on Stone sentencing fallout: 'All this must be investigated'

Charlie Hurt, Leslie Marshall clash on Roger Stone case: This is a 'political prosecution'

(end)

They'll throw Wallace out pretty quickly. Barr will be criticized. And they will eventually circle around editorials that will justify a pardon.

It's how the Republicans can keep their little scam going.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Yeah, tell him (de Donnie) to shut up, for good!

But Barr will just be another pond in H.R.H. Trump' s game.

Guess he will be trashed sooner than later.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Stone is being sentenced for 7-9 years as per sentencing guidelines

To be fair these are (new) guidelines. They are no longer mandatory minimums like before. It's just the fact and a higher up (whether it's political or not) has the power to lower the recommended sentence. But Trump and Hannity made this situation worse by not keeping their mouths shut. Remember the previous AG Jeff Sessions? Here we go again - just like with Sessions - and it looks like Trump and Barr hate each other when it looked as if Barr was personal attorney of Trump.

Hey Trump people! Is Barr a NeverTrumper Liberal? How about if Trump holds two positions of both President and AG. Then he can finally go after and jail Hillary for her crimes (another broken promise)

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Finding one biased juror might be overlooked by a judge. Finding two biased jurors, and the defendant should be granted a new trial. But three biased jurors? It's very difficult to believe that the prosecutors were unaware that there were no biased jurors. 25% of the jury was tainted. Now that the prosecutors entire case is being questioned by higher-ups, it's little wonder that these prosecutors quit this case as quickly as they did. They'll be lucky if they are not disbarred.

Barr would like Trump to stop discussing this case. That sounds like good advice. Trump may, or may not, continue to discuss this case. Either way, Democrats, and Hillary-worshippers, will whine about he does. It's what they do.

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

Trump may, or may not, continue to discuss this case. 

He won't stop. He is a repetitive paranoid old man. He won't stop talking about this case any less than stop obsessing over "Crooked Hillary" and being bitter than she never went to jail for her high crimes.

They'll be lucky if they are not disbarred.

When it Trump going to disbar them?

Finding two biased jurors

Yes, one of them is a hairdresser whose clients are sometimes liberal. Pretty biased. The judge should throw the book at this biased hairdresser juror for perjury.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

nishikat - Hey Trump people!

You are the one who has been predicting the future. Perhaps you can make up a better explanation than what really happens?

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Graham, McConnell Back AG Barr Following Criticism of Trump Tweets

(news source)

According to the above probably lost of Republicans wish a different present were in the WH...someone sane such as Chris Christie or John Kasich.

You are the one who has been predicting the future. Perhaps you can make up a better explanation than what really happens?

According to Trump2ANRA people Barr is now a bad person and should be fired. Just like with Sessions. Trump is always in the right - this argument is not with me. But one thing I do predict is Trump will NOT leave the WH if he is defeated. That is a fact.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Finding one biased juror might be overlooked by a judge

No. There is absolutely nothing accurate about this statement.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Chip Star - No. There is absolutely nothing accurate about this statement.

Then you should have no problem calling for a new trial for Roger Stone.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Too bad Obama's AGs Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch did squat to prosecute anyone in the Deep State. Couldn't expect them to, being as how they're Deep State themselves. It's all been dumped on the Trump Administration.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Then you should have no problem calling for a new trial for Roger Stone

You’re claiming there was a biased juror on Stone’s jury and the judge overlooked it? No, this does not happen. Since you made this ridiculous claim, it’s on you to provide evidence. I won’t hold my breath.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Too bad Obama's AGs Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch did squat to prosecute anyone in the Deep State. Couldn't expect them to, being as how they're Deep State themselves. It's all been dumped on the Trump Administration.

Serrano in with an asinine conspiracy theory. To be expected.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Given how his behaviour has become even more egregious since his sycophants in the Senate acquitted him on charges of abuse of power, it is time that those around him invoked the 25 Amendment and had him removed from office before he can cause further damage. The SDNY and NYAG would then be able to see that he gets the sort of custodial care he deserves.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Pay attention to Barr’s actions, not his words. He has been 100% on the Trump Train to this point. Don’t let this be a distraction or an excuse to let him off the hook.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Too bad Obama's AGs Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch did squat to prosecute anyone in the Deep State. 

Now that Barr is a part of the Deep State, lets go ahead and prosecute him.

How about 7-9 years?

Lets not bother with a trial, if Donny tweets we need to get it done.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Incidentally, could you link to this independent media? I keep asking you and you never ever give us suggestions, or let us know where you get your news from.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Well, I turn on CNN

Why watch something you hate?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I can't believe a word Barr or anyone from the Trump admin says. There has never been a time for a president, impeached or not, to tweet or personally involve his office in DOJ cases.

Relax, nothing happened, just a tweet. Trump can vent, the man has got every right to be teed off.

But it's the Trump era, an era when the the Constitution's balance and separation are being undermined each day he and his family are in office.

Where were you the last eight years? Sleeping!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Where were you the last eight years? Sleeping!

And you?

Three of the the last eights are Trump?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

And you?

Me? Apparently as in usual fashion most liberals have glossed over what has happened over the last three years, but it figures liberals always do and they never seem to want to acknowledge any of their wrongdoing, hilarious.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Trump and Twitter are ridiculous, but that's the new normal.

Stone is basically guilty of "misleading" a now discredited and failed investigation.  Sounds like a misdemeanor or minor felony at best.

Poor old dude being vilified and life destroyed for not much

Trump will anyway pardon him.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

ulysses:

Lets not bother with a trial, if Donny tweets we need to get it done.

They had a trial. Donny only tweeted about the sentencing recommendation, which is absolutely outrageous. A prison sentence equivalent to rape or murder for a political commentator who made some careless comments? And when you look at the details of this cangaroo court, your head should be on fire. Unless you live in the CNN bubble.

And by the way, Donny can and should pardon this victim of deep state misjustice.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

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