Jonathan Turley, an expert on Constitutional law, blasted CNN on Twitter for its coverage of former President Barack Obama. The network trumpeted Obama’s opinion that the “rule of law” is now “at risk” in this country. However, Turley, a law professor and dedicated liberal, methodically and completely destroyed that false and inflammatory claim.
Jonathan Turley: Obama Made a “False Claim”
Professor Turley noted that CNN ignored two crucial facts. Obama “was wrong on Flynn’s criminal charge and wrong on the lack of precedent,” he tweeted. Turley was referring to excerpts from the ex-President’s private call to former staff members. In the call, Obama criticized the Justice Department’s decision to drop the charges against former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn.
Trying to sound ominous, Obama claimed the dismissal was without legal precedent, went against the rule of law, and threatened to undermine the entire process. He hinted that the decision was improper and politically-motivated.
Not surprisingly, though, Obama, who is actively campaigning for Joe Biden, was intentionally misleading in his criticisms. In response, Turley called Obama’s statement a “false claim” and included in his tweet a link to an article on his website.
Three Reasons Why the Rule of Law is Safe
The article gave three specific reasons why Obama’s statement was, as Turley puts it, “curious.” On their own, each reason contradicts the former President’s criticisms. Taken together, they expose his words for what they truly are: empty political rhetoric.
First, Turley correctly points out that “Flynn was never charged with perjury,” as Obama claimed. Rather, Flynn plead guilty to a single charge of giving false statements to a federal investigator. Even before the DOJ’s decision Turley argued that the charge should be dismissed. After the guilty plea, new documents revealed that the “lies” Flynn supposedly told were the result of entrapment.
Second, Turley said, “there is ample precedent for this motion.” In fact, the law mandates dismissal when there are fundamental questions about the case or examples of prosecutorial misconduct. Obviously, both conditions apply here.
Third, he says, “there is also case law … dealing with the dangers of multiple prosecutions.” He went on to list numerous examples of how this case is dangerously close to being an example of double jeopardy.
The Bottom Line
Jonathan Turley says that even if someone, in good faith, disagrees with the Flynn decision, “it is simply untrue” that the DOJ had no authority or precedent to do so. Obama, who is also a lawyer, knew this before he made his statements.
Just as bad, CNN, like other left-leaning, biased mainstream media outlets, ignored Obama’s attempt at deception. As Turley said, “Given its slogan ‘Facts First,’ it appears the facts are not even coming last. They are not coming at all.”