Friday, February 21, 2020

Russiagate: Stone Sentenced to 3+ Years

"Incorrect?" In what way, #Resistance Fighter?

Was it not all that you wanted it to be? Was it not fulfilling?

Did it not scratch you where you Orange Man Bad itched?

Have you not heard of the Mueller Report, which similarly "incorrectly" concluded that Russia Collusion was a hoax all along?

Do you not accept that finding? Are you a conspiracy theorist?

During the hearing, the judge stated -- flat-out said -- that Stone deserved a long sentence because his "lie" caused the Mueller Report to be "incorrect," by which she means, "It did not deliver what CNN and MSNBC promised me it would deliver, and I'm here to rectify that."

So, yes, Stone is being sentenced by a Trump-deranged Russian Collusion Truther.

She will not accept the Mueller Report as proof there was never any "collusion," and she's decided that the man standing before her, Roger Stone, is the reason that her paranoid fantasies were not proven to be true.
Just more fodder for the inevitable appeal. Victoria Taft at PJ Media, Roger Stone Is Sentenced In D.C. Courtroom
Investigators at the highest levels of the FBI, DOJ, and intelligence agencies used phony opposition research provided by the Democratic National Committee and 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign to get foreign intelligence surveillance warrants to spy on the Trump campaign. They contrived a narrative suggesting that Trump was a Russian agent who was surrounded by other Russian assets. The Inspector General's office found that two of the FISA warrants sought to spy on the Trump campaign were illegally obtained. Two others are still under investigation. The predicate for the entire bizarre "spygate" investigation and Mueller probe are now under investigation by the Department of Justice.

CBS reporter Bill Rehkopf noted that the judge took a "subtle dig at the president. She says she cannot be affected by someone whose political career could be impacted by the case. Also says she can't be 'buffeted by the Left.'"

Before sentencing, Stone, who has been under a gag order the entire prosecution, said he had nothing to say at the hearing. Later, Judge Amy Berman Jackson said "I have a lot to say" on the matter.
WaPoo, Roger Stone sentenced to three years and four months in prison, as Trump predicts ‘exoneration’ for his friend
In a lengthy speech before imposing the penalty, Jackson seemed to take aim at Trump, saying Stone “was not prosecuted for standing up for the president; he was prosecuted for covering up for the president.” She also appeared to call out Attorney General William P. Barr, saying his intervention to reduce career prosecutors’ sentencing recommendation was “unprecedented.” But she said the politics surrounding the case had not influenced her decision.
Bullshit. Althouse, “Wearing sunglasses and a dark fedora, Stone... strode past a giant inflatable rat dressed as Trump with a red tie and yellow hair - a common prop in street protests - and a sign calling for his pardon.”  Da Peacock, Roger Stone sentenced to over 3 years in prison as judge slams him for ‘covering up for’ Trump and Trump says Roger Stone has 'very good chance of exoneration' hours after sentencing "The president also attacked the jury forewoman in Stone's criminal case, calling her "totally tainted.""  AP, Trump ally Roger Stone sentenced to over 3 years in prison. Via the Wombat's
In The Mailbox: 02.20.20, Don Surber says Pardon Stone, Fire The Judge. If only,  and Legal Insurrection: Judge Sentences Roger Stone To 40 Months
Sundance at CTH, Roger Stone Gets 40 Month Prison Sentence…
Roger Stone receives three years and four months in federal prison as a first offender. However, Judge Amy Berman Jackson has delayed the implementation of the sentence until she takes up the issues with a biased jury foreperson, and request for a new trial.

Within the process to deal with Stone’s motion for a new trial, Judge Berman-Jackson knows resolving the petition involves bringing jury foreperson Tomeka Hart to her courtroom for questioning. The activist judge did not want a damaging political optic prior to delivering her sentence. An appearance by the foreperson to explain overt bias begs the question of how poorly Judge Berman-Jackson handled jury selection.

Judge Jackson also keeps the blanket gag order on Roger Stone which stops him from discussing, highlighting or complaining about any issue related to his prosecution and trial.
I saw Judge Nap on Fox, no Trump friend, say he thought the gag order was totally unconstitutional, on first amendment grounds. CNN, Trump says he won't pardon Roger Stone -- for now
President Donald Trump said Thursday he won't act to grant clemency to his friend and former associate Roger Stone right now, saying he wants the process to play out before making a decision.

"I'm not going to do anything in terms of the great powers bestowed upon a president of the United States, I want the process play out, I think that's the best thing to do," Trump said in Las Vegas. "Because I'd love to see Roger exonerated and I'd love to see it happen because I personally think he was treated very unfairly."

The President didn't rule out an eventual pardon or commutation, but said the process should play out first. "At some point I'll make a determination, but Roger Stone and everybody has to be treated fairly. And this has not been a fair process," Trump said.
"Jay Whig" at AmGreat, James Comey Is Lying About the Justice Department’s Job Why not, he lies about a lot of things.
 "It is the president’s duty and obligation to intervene to correct miscarriages of justice and to root out corruption within the government. Don’t let anyone—especially the insolent ex-director of the FBI—tell you otherwise."

House of Reps, Collins, Nunes Urge Nadler to Address FISA Abuse. Not gonna happen when the abuse is going the direction Nadler and Schiff prefer.  Robby Soave at Reason, The FBI's Sloppy FISA Surveillance Is Exposed
Trump and his supporters were mistaken to attribute to malicious conspiracy what is better explained by bureaucratic incompetence, but the latter is not necessarily less dangerous. The OIG gave America its most intimate glimpse ever of the FBI's internal workings. What it revealed doesn't bode well for liberty.
It can be, and probably was both a malicious conspiracy and bureaucratic incompetence. In any case they had too much power and too little oversight. Nice Deb at AmGreat reveals how K.T. McFarland Says Mueller Interrogators Put Her Through ‘Hell’ and Left Her ‘Traumatized
“I am the original girl scout,” the former deputy national security adviser explained. “I followed all the rules, I turned in all of my files and my phone logs and my test messages and emails when I left government, didn’t leak to the press.”

Unfortunately, she said, “playing by the rules” is what got her “in so much trouble.”

“When the Mueller people came knocking at my door, they started quizzing me on stuff that I didn’t have access to and didn’t remember 100 percent accurately, and it allowed them to say, ‘well you must be lying then,'” McFarland told WMAL hosts Vince Coglianese and Mary Walter.

Walter asked McFarland why she wasn’t in the same position as Flynn, who ended up pleading guilty to a crime he didn’t commit (after Mueller threatened to bring criminal charges against his son). She replied: “because I didn’t break.”

“They gave me the distinct impression after … 20, 30, 40 hours of hell that they wanted me to either plead guilty to a crime I didn’t feel I committed, or to talk about other people having done things that I didn’t think they had done,” she explained. The former Trump aide told the hosts that the Mueller interrogators didn’t come right out and say they wanted her to cop a plea, but that “was the impression they conveyed.”

McFarland, a foreign policy and national security expert whose political career goes back to the 1970s, said she’d had “a really hard time of it” and almost broke herself. “At one point, I turned to my lawyer and said, ‘just tell me what they want me to say and I’ll say it!'” she recalled.
Sounds like a malicious conspiracy to me. Ace, KT McFarlane: Mueller's Angry Democrats Put Me Through "Hell" and Demanded I Admit to a Crime That Hadn't Happened or Claim That Innocent People Had Committed Crimes, Plus: Trump Rally! The tree of liberty is getting mighty thirsty.

The replacement of Acting ODNI Joseph Maguire with German Ambassador Richard Grinell is still making waves. WaPoo, Senior intelligence official told lawmakers that Russia wants to see Trump reelected
A senior U.S. intelligence official told lawmakers last week that Russia wants to see President Trump reelected, viewing his administration as more favorable to the Kremlin’s interests, according to people who were briefed on the comments.

After learning of that analysis, which was provided to House lawmakers in a classified hearing, Trump grew angry at his acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, in the Oval Office, seeing Maguire and his staff as disloyal for speaking to Congress about Russia’s perceived preference. The intelligence official’s analysis and Trump’s furious response ­ruined Maguire’s chances of becoming the permanent intelligence chief, according to people familiar with the matter who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive matter.

It was not clear what specific steps, if any, U.S. intelligence officials think Russia may have taken to help Trump, according to the individuals.
. . .
Trump announced Wednesday that he was replacing Maguire with a vocal loyalist, Richard Grenell, who is the U.S. ambassador to Germany. The shake-up at the top of the intelligence community is the latest move in a post-impeachment purge. Trump has instructed aides to identify and remove officials across the government who aren’t defending his interests, and he wants them replaced with loyalists.

Maguire, a career official who is respected by the intelligence rank and file, was considered a leading candidate to be nominated to the post of DNI, White House aides had said. But Trump’s opinion shifted last week when he heard from a Republican ally about the official’s remarks.
. . .
At that briefing, Trump angrily asked Maguire why he had to learn of what Pierson had said from Nunes and not from his own aides, according to administration officials with knowledge of the meeting. He said that Maguire should not have let the Capitol Hill briefing happen — particularly before he received the briefing — and that he should not have learned about it from a congressman, said one administration official.
Sundance calls it  A Possible Inflection Point – ODNI Ric Grenell…
All of the right administrative state interests are visibly triggered by the appointment; and it appears this could be a key turning point in President Trump’s push-back against the permanent intelligence apparatus that has targeted his administration for three years.
Ben Wingarten at Da Fed explains Why Richard Grenell As Director Of National Intelligence Is A Loss For The Deep State
From Berlin, Grenell has been an outspoken and passionate advocate for the president’s policies, including:
  • The maximum pressure campaign against Iran, among other things persuading German businesses to cease sanctions-skirting commercial relations with Iran in the critical sectors that serve and underwrite its malign efforts, and consistently pressuring it to stop appeasing the genocidal, Jew-hating regime;
  • Lobbying against using Huawei infrastructure in developing the all-important fifth-generation (5G) networking technology, including making explicit to Germany that the United States will limit intelligence sharing on which it relies should it permit the Chinese Communist Party-backed (CCP) telecommunications behemoth to build its network—a message Grenell delivered to all nations on the heels of being named acting DNI director;
  • Countering Russian efforts to increase leverage over European powers through delivering increased energy supplies, by firmly opposing Nord Stream 2, while helping successfully negotiate an agreement with Germany to open itself to U.S. liquefied natural gas, thereby creating competition for Russia in the energy market;
  • Demanding that North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies including Germany increase their commitments rather than free-riding on America’s dime, while adding insult to injury by again participating in projects like Nord Stream 2.
Grenell has undertaken these efforts unconstrained by political correctness, and singularly focused on achieving the administration’s objectives, which he self-evidently shares. Naturally then, as with others who have had the temerity to agree with the president they have committed to serve, like Attorney General Barr since at least the time he used “spying” to describe the surveillance the Obama administration deployed against candidate Trump, the vitriol to which Grenell will be subjected is great.
Bwahaahaa! John Bolton Trashes Democrats' 'Grossly Partisan' Impeachment, Downplays Impact of Would-Be Testimony (Matt Margolis, PJ Media) and Tristan Justice at Da Fed, John Bolton Admits Last-Minute Impeachment Leak Was A Publicity Stunt, but read carefully, he doesn't quite come out and admit it. But at least Trump would understand the value of self-promotion.

From News Thud, DOJ Letter To Jerry Nadler Confirms Ukraine Investigation Dealing Blow To Dems and Democrat Senators beg Michael Horowitz to investigate Giuliani to try and get to Trump
Desperate Democrat Senators have sent a letter to IG Michael Horowitz begging him to investigate Rudy Giuliani, to see if he ‘influenced’ the DOJ:
THE HILL – Senate Democrats are asking the Justice Department’s top watchdog to expand its investigation into Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer, to include contacts with DOJ officials.
Ten Democrats sent a letter to Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz asking that an ongoing probe into Giuliani’s contacts with FBI officials include if he had “improper communications” with senior DOJ officials.
“We are concerned that Mr. Giuliani’s interactions with senior DOJ officials may have unduly influenced or created conflicts of interests with regard to DOJ activities. At a minimum, Mr. Giuliani’s access creates an appearance of impropriety that could undermine trust in the agency,” they wrote in the letter to Horowitz.
“If his contacts do not violate one or more of these provisions, further internal guidance may be needed to ensure that DOJ delivers ‘fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans,’” they added.
This isn’t about Giuliani. He’s just a means to an end to try and find some way to hurt Trump and stop him from winning the 2020 election.
At Da Caller, Anders Hagstrom reports a Top Pentagon Official Who Played Role In Ukraine Scandal Reportedly Steps Down
The Pentagon’s top policy official reportedly stepped down from public service Wednesday with news reports indicating he was pressured to resign due to a lack of confidence in “his ability to carry out President [Donald] Trump’s agenda.”

The official, John Rood, was responsible for certifying to Congress that Ukraine was eligible to receive the $250 million in military aide that was ultimately delayed by Trump, leading to his impeachment, according to Bloomberg News. The resignation comes amid fears Trump would continue a purge of career officials who played a role in his impeachment. Nevertheless, Trump publicly wished Rood well Wednesday on Twitter.
I'm sure that certifying nations are eligible to receive aid has been almost automatic in the past. But maybe he should have checked a little harder, given Ukraine's outstanding reputation for corruption.

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