Over 1,000 Ex-Justice Department Officials Call For Attorney General William Barr To Resign
More than a thousand former Department of Justice Officials have called for Attorney General William Barr to resign after his office lowered Roger Stone’s prison sentence. Stone is a close ally of President Donald Trump and is awaiting sentencing for witness tampering and lying to investigators among other charges.
Former DOJ officials who’ve worked alongside both Democratic and Republican administrations released a letter on Sunday condemning what they view as the president’s and Attorney General’s “interference in the fair administration of justice.”
“As former DOJ officials, we each proudly took an oath to support and defend our Constitution and faithfully execute the duties of our offices. The very first of these duties is to apply the law equally to all Americans. This obligation flows directly from the Constitution, and it is embedded in countless rules and laws governing the conduct of DOJ lawyers. The Justice Manual — the DOJ’s rulebook for its lawyers — states that “the rule of law depends on the evenhanded administration of justice”; that the Department’s legal decisions “must be impartial and insulated from political influence”; and that the Department’s prosecutorial powers, in particular, must be “exercised free from partisan consideration. All DOJ lawyers are well-versed in these rules, regulations, and constitutional commands,” the letter read.
It continued by reprimanding Trump’s and Barr’s latest actions in the Stone case, while adding that their actions smear the Department of Justice’s reputation. “Such behavior is a grave threat to the fair administration of justice. In this nation, we are all equal before the law. A person should not be given special treatment in a criminal prosecution because they are a close political ally of the President. Governments that use the enormous power of law enforcement to punish their enemies and reward their allies are not constitutional republics; they are autocracies.”
Last week, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington recommended a prison sentence of up to nine years for Stone. Trump took to Twitter, calling the recommendation “a horrible and very unfair situation.”
This is a horrible and very unfair situation. The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them. Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice! https://t.co/rHPfYX6Vbv
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 11, 2020
On Tuesday, however, the Department of Justice ordered a new sentencing that suggested “far less” time. As the news broke, four federal prosecutors, Aaron Zelinsky, Jonathan Kravis, Adam Jed and Michael Marando, resigned.
The president took to twitter again, this time congratulating Barr for “taking charge of a case that was totally out of control.”
Congratulations to Attorney General Bill Barr for taking charge of a case that was totally out of control and perhaps should not have even been brought. Evidence now clearly shows that the Mueller Scam was improperly brought & tainted. Even Bob Mueller lied to Congress!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 12, 2020