Over the past week Donald Trump has repeatedly whined in public about how Attorney General Bill Barr isn’t taking any of the big swings he wants him to take. Trump, for instance, thinks Barr should have somehow magically arrested Joe Biden and Barack Obama by now. The thing is, Barr keeps proving that he can’t even pull off the small-time henchman work.
Months ago, Trump gave Barr one simple task: get Michael Flynn off the hook. Barr responded by forcing the DOJ to announce that it was dropping the criminal case against Flynn, even though Flynn had already pleaded guilty, cut a cooperating plea deal, and confessed in detail. Barr apparently thought this was going to work. But the judge in the case, and the appeals court judges above him, felt differently.
Months later, the Flynn case is still in court. Now Barr and his remaining loyalists in the DOJ have been reduced to submitting FBI agent notes that they say prove Flynn was somehow framed. The trouble: they’ve been caught altering some of the documents in questions. Now the judge is threatening perjury charges against the DOJ representatives if they keep up the antics.
Meanwhile, Michael Flynn is still on track to go to prison. Donald Trump can try pardoning him, but if Trump loses the election, the next iteration of the DOJ will likely just bring the remainder of the criminal charges against Flynn that he avoided with his original plea deal, which he’s since voided. Bill Barr was supposed to get Flynn off the hook. Now it’s just an embarrassing mess. Barr really isn’t very good at this.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report