Flynn sentencing live blogging: SULLIVAN WARNS FLYNN OF A PRISON SENTENCE, asks about treason...
SULLIVAN WARNS FLYNN OF A PRISON SENTENCE: "You were an unregistered agent of a foreign country while serving as the National Security Adviser to the president! "Arguably, this undermines everything this flag over here stands for! Arguably, you sold your country out!
Sullivan: "I'm not hiding my disgust, my disdain, for this criminal offense." Giving Flynn the chance to delay until he's finished cooperating, Sullivan says he "can't promise anything" about the sentence he's about to hand down.
if you have more to tell, better spill it now if you don't want to go to jail.
"You were an unregistered agent of a foreign country will serving as the National Security Adviser to the president of the United States!" "Arguably this undermines everything this flag over here stands for!"
DID FLYNN COMMIT TREASON? Sullivan is now asking the special counsel's office whether it ever considered charging Flynn with treason. Prosecutor Brandon Van Grack struggles to answer, saying it wasn't considered.
There have been assertions that the charge of treason requires actual war or hostilities under the law of war. This judge's comments should end that argument. (Doesn't make it any easier to prosecute such a charge, though).
It's doubtful that the judge was simply trying to scare Flynn.
"I felt terrible about that," Sullivan says, after the prosecutor notes Flynn's conduct as a foreign agent ended in mid-Nov 2016. "I'm not suggesting he committed treason," Sullivan adds, further apologizing for his remarks in the prior session.
With Mueller recommending the low end of the sentencing guidelines, even zero time, it would look bad for the judge to continue along that line. Any incarceration at all might be appealed after that stern rebuke. The apology and the delay should help make the eventual sentence appeal-proof.
Not to mention scaring the crap out of Flynn. That might make him sing a little sweeter to Mueller's team.
....does the Madman pardon him by this afternoon?
These paper patriots in the KGOP.
Judge Sullivan has recessed Flynn's sentencing hearing until 12:30 p.m. to give Flynn and his lawyers a chance to rethink everything that's been discussed so far today w/ respect to postponing this entire proceeding.
This isn't going the say Flynn planned. He should have NEVER put that shit in writing to the judge.
"Arguably, you sold your country out!"
You can drop the "arguably."
why Mueller scrapped Manafort's plea deal ? It still doesn't make sense.
Sullivan begins by BACKTRACKING on his remarks that Flynn was an unregistered foreign agent while working in the White House, and that he may have committed treason.
"I felt terrible about that," Sullivan says, after the prosecutor notes Flynn's conduct as a foreign agent ended in mid-Nov 2016. "I'm not suggesting he committed treason," Sullivan adds, further apologizing for his remarks in the prior session. - Steven Portnoy
Nice of the PROSECUTORS to proffer that on the DEFENDANTS behalf, but there's actually no real way of knowing just when he stopped being a FOREIGN AGENT.
Flynn is the only one who knows when he stopped acting as a traitor.
Judge Sullivan is now trying to walk back some of his rhetoric before the break. Says he was just asking about treason, not saying that Flynn committed it. Dont read too much into the questions I asked. Sullivan says he couldnt even tell you what the elements of treason are.
Appeals have been won because a judge appeared too emotional in a ruling.
No judge likes to be overturned.
Mueller's team recommended sentencing at the low end of the guidelines, even zero incarceration time.
Given that, a harsh sentence after the judge's remarks could be an opening for an appeal -- emotional rather than reasoned.
BREAKING: Flynn's attorneys say they are now taking the judge up on his offer to delay today's sentencing because he's still cooperating with prosecutors.
You just opened up a hole big enough for the ReThugs to drive a Mack truck through. Even though Flynn is a guilty party, right-wingers everywhere are going to question the judge's competency over the treason remarks. Argh!
Flynn has already pled guilty. This is not a trial.
I think Sullivan's already decided he's getting no time, due to what Prosecutors are asking for, but he was simply getting it off his chest that he thinks it's ridiculous that Flynn is going to get off this easy.
I would also guess that his main goal at this point would be to make certain that since Flynn is going to get off super-easy, then the Government needs to get AS MUCH info out of the guy as possible.
I just wish everything was as iron-clad as Mueller is undoubtedly working to make it. To have a judge suggest that an accused might be guilty of treason and then backtrack just looks completely unprofessional. Stick to the facts and charges at hand!
Which would've probably been better, or failing that, he should not have backtracked after the recess. That was indeed a bad combo of events.
But when the wingnuts try to make this 'case' you describe, we can counter with 'this judge isn't deciding guilt, this isn't a trial', and 'Sullivan is quite well known for protecting the rights of defendants against government prosecutors overreach. As such, the fact that he clearly believes Flynn was UNDER charged rather than OVER charged ... is not a good sign for Flynn'.
Judge Sullivan just handed down a much harsher sentence to Flynn than any short time jail sentence. He just connected the word treason to Mike Flynn. And I think that's exactly what he meant to do. No one, family or friend, will ever be able to look at Flynn again and not think of him as once being treasonous to his country.
That, dear reader, is one harsh penalty. Let that sink in. Put yourself in Flynn's shoes, to be forever branded in the minds of your fellow citizens.
If it's a judge, that's Judge Sullivan. So I guess it's one of the lawyers?