Why Democrats Will Try to Revive ‘Russia Collusion’ Story & Imprison Trump Once He Steps Down

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from Sputnik News:

Donald Trump’s executive grant of clemency for General Michael Flynn provoked rage among the Democrats, as they continue to stick to the groundless “Trump-Russia” collusion story and will try to imprison the President once he vacates the Oval Office, according to former Ronald Reagan administration official, Dr Paul Craig Roberts.

On 25 November, President Donald Trump granted a full pardon to retired three-star General Michael Flynn who had served less than a month in the capacity of national security adviser in the Trump administration.

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“The President has pardoned General Flynn because he should never have been prosecuted,” the White House statement concerning the executive grant of clemency reads. “In fact, the Department of Justice has firmly concluded that the charges against General Flynn should be dropped. This Full Pardon achieves that objective, finally bringing to an end the relentless, partisan pursuit of an innocent man.”

‘Trump’s Pardon Ended the Mess Caused by Judge Sullivan’

“The Department of Justice dropped the case against Gen Flynn on the grounds that there was no case,” says Dr Paul Craig Roberts, an American economist and former assistant secretary of the Treasury for economic policy under President Ronald Reagan. “A federal judge – Democrat – challenged the DoJ, which doesn’t make any sense, because it is not up to the judge whether or not a prosecutor brings a case. I think to end the mess caused by the judge, Trump pardoned Flynn.”

The President’s move has been subject to fierce criticism from top Democrats who called it a “brazen abuse of power” and an act of “grave corruption”. However, American legal observers say that the Flynn case was heavily politicised from the outset.

Although Democrat leaders argue that the General twice pleaded guilty for lying to the FBI about his talks with the Russian ambassador, they omit the fact that in January 2020, Flynn filed a motion to withdraw his guilty plea. His legal team argued that the prosecutors intentionally hid the exculpatory evidence which could potentially vindicate the military veteran. The motion specifically referred to the prosecutors’ “bad faith, vindictiveness, and breach of the plea agreement”. Flynn’s lawyers also alleged that the FBI set a “perjury trap” for the former national security adviser to manipulate him into admitting his guilt.

To add to the controversy, a batch of FBI documents, unsealed in April 2020, indicated that the bureau’s operation Crossfire Razor targeting the General had found nothing to implicate him in “collusion” with Russia. The case would have been closed had not then-FBI Deputy Assistant-Director Peter Strzok intervened to keep it open. Later, in July 2020, a draft internal government memo dated 30 January 2017 clearly stated that though the FBI recognised “the discrepancy between the statements and actual calls”, the agency determined that Flynn “was not acting as an agent of Russia”.

After the declassification of the first batch of the bombshell papers in May, the Department of Justice dropped charges against Flynn concluding that “continued prosecution of this case would not serve the interests of justice”. Commenting on the DoJ’s decision, Attorney General William Barr clarified that the FBI “did not have the basis for a counter-intelligence investigation against Flynn at that stage.”

In response, District Judge Emmet Sullivan authorised “amicus curiae” to challenge the government’s position. However, Patrick Borchers, Lillis Family Professor of Law at Creighton University, in Nebraska, suggested in his May interview with Sputnik that “the judge ha[d] no legal authority to interfere in a decision of the Executive Branch as to whether to prosecute an individual”.

Trump’s clemency order has put an end to the judicial backwards-and-forwards but it does not mean that the case is over, argued Republican Senator Chuck Grassley in his 26 November tweet.

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