Sen. Pat Toomey on Wednesday said former Trump adviser Michael Flynn should be pardoned over lingering charges that he lied to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
“I think Michael Flynn should be pardoned” the Republican senator said on Chris Stigall’s radio show.
“He has not been convicted of anything. The prosecutorial discretion that ought to be afforded to the Justice Department as it is in every other case — they recognize that he should not be prosecuted,” Toomey said. “We know we have a case of entrapment. We had a coerced plea because they were threatening to go after his son. There’s a lot of reasons why Michael Flynn is a very different case [from Roger Stone.]”
The senator’s comments stand out because he was one of only a handful of elected Republicans who offered any public rebuke of Trump’s controversial decision to commute the sentence of his one-time political advisor Roger Stone earlier this month.
“Stone was duly convicted of lying to Congress, witness tampering, and obstructing a congressional investigation conducted by a Republican-led committee” Toomey said in a statement about Stone’s pardon.
“Earlier this week Attorney General Bill Barr stated he thought Mr. Stone’s prosecution was ‘righteous’ and ‘appropriate’ and the sentence he received was ‘fair.’ Any objections to Mr. Stone’s conviction and trial should be resolved through the appeals process.”
That reprimand from Toomey drew the president’s wrath.
Do RINO’S Pat Toomey & Mitt Romney have any problem with the fact that we caught Obama, Biden, & Company illegally spying on my campaign? Do they care if Comey, McCabe, Page & her lover, Peter S, the whole group, ran rampant, wild & unchecked – lying & leaking all the way? NO!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 12, 2020
“Do RINO’S Pat Toomey & Mitt Romney have any problem with the fact that we caught Obama, Biden, & Company illegally spying on my campaign?” Trump tweeted. “Do they care if Comey, McCabe, Page & her lover, Peter S, the whole group, ran rampant, wild & unchecked – lying & leaking all the way? NO!”
Flynn lasted less than a month as Trump’s national security advisor after being caught lying to FBI agents about conversations he had with Russian officials after the election but before Trump was sworn in.
However, problems surfaced with how the FBI conducted their inquiry with Flynn, and his legal team this spring began to try to withdraw his guilty plea.
A memo from one of the agents on the questioning of Flynn read: “What’s our goal? Truth/Admission or get him to lie, so we can prosecute him or get him fired?”
Since then, the case has become suspended in a strange limbo after the Justice Department has tried to drop the case. However, U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan aims to hold a hearing to determine if he must dismiss the case.
“Sullivan has rejected a series of claims about whether the government withheld exculpatory evidence from Flynn’s legal team and raised questions about the Justice Department’s motivations for abruptly dropping the Flynn prosecution after months of urging by Trump,” Politico reported on Monday.
“Rather than accept DOJ’s decision, he appointed an outside adviser to argue whether he is required to simply acquiesce or if he can conduct a searching review to determine whether dismissal is in the interests of the justice system.”