Daily Notifications
Sign up for free emails to receive the feature story every morning in your inbox at


Why investigate? — Barr so corrupt, he didn’t need to be told to intervene for Stone

[Stone, Trump, Barr]

Attorney Scott Pilutik wrestles with the news of the day, from a lawyerly perspective…

[Regarding this story: WH Denies That Trump Pressured Barr To Reduce Stone’s Prison Sentence]

The framing for most of the stories asks whether Trump pressured Barr to intervene on Roger Stone’s behalf, but that’s the wrong question because the answer is irrelevant.

Since taking the US Attorney General job, Barr has demonstrated a remarkable acuity to feeling out Trump’s personal interests, probably more so than Trump himself. If Chuck Schumer’s investigation is premised on who told what when, it’s going to be a time-wasting snipe hunt.

No phone call between the two was necessary for Barr to know that Roger Stone was found guilty by a jury of committing a crime *on behalf of* then-candidate Trump. Stone did not cooperate. Barr, a smart lawyer, fully grasps the implications of the foregoing, that being that Roger Stone holds Trump’s potential criminal liability in his hands. Stone isn’t merely Trump’s old scumbag-for-hire friend, he’s a potential witness against Trump.


Accordingly, Barr should have proceeded with an abundance of caution if only for appearance’s sake. Instead he once again acted as the president’s personal attorney as if Trump’s criminal liability was the country’s.

The range originally sought by the four prosecutors who withdrew from the case was not only in line with the sentencing guidelines, but given Stone’s antics throughout the trial, which included threatening a federal judge, perfectly fair.

And yes, the judge can hand Stone whatever sentence she likes within the guidelines and disregard both DOJ memos. But that’s no longer the point. The issue is far bigger than the sentence Roger Stone ultimately receives. The US Attorney General is supposed to represent the country’s interests, an ostensibly objective standard that occasionally borders on the political but has never been this manifestly, stridently corrupt.

Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email