Georgetown law school professor and constitutional expert Jonathan Turley said Thursday that Attorney General William Barr has been fully “vindicated” following this week’s sentencing of long-time GOP operative Roger Stone.
Turley’s assessment comes amid furor over Barr’s decision to override four prosecutors who had recommended that Stone receive a sentence of between seven and nine years after being convicted on seven counts including lying to and obstructing Congress, and witness intimidation.
Democrats especially had complained that Barr “interfered” in the case on behalf of President Trump, since Stone is a longtime friend of the president.
But Turley, who is frequently called by Congress to give testimony on legal and constitutional issues, said the fact that a federal court sentenced Stone to 40 months on Thursday is proof that the legal system remains independent.
“The sentence not only completed the conviction of Roger Stone but completely vindicated Attorney Bill Barr on the appropriate length of the sentence,” Turley, who testified in the House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry,wrote on his website Thursday night.
“Barr has been unfairly accused of political influence in modifying the original sentence even though many of us denounced the original recommendation as wildly offbase,” he continued.
Barr was also attacked by former Justice Department officials and political appointees. More than 2,000 signed a letter demanding he resign.
“Not only did over a thousand former prosecutors demand his resignation without knowing the full facts, but one former colleague declared Barr to be ‘unAmerican,'” Turley wrote.
“If these individuals have a modicum of decency, they will acknowledge that Barr was right on the merits of this sentencing recommendation as demonstrated by the court itself.”
U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson sentenced Stone.