Nancy Pelosi is calling Donald Trump’s interference in the Roger Stone case an “abuse of power” as the president and his allies begin to launch attacks against jury members from Stone’s case.
This week, the Department of Justice made what was seen as a shocking reversal when it spoke out against recommendations from its own prosecutors that Stone serve between seven and nine years behind bars. Stone had been convicted on a series of counts of lying to Congress and investigators, and intimidating witnesses.
Hours after Trump spoke out against the recommendation on Twitter, the Justice Department filed a new court notice saying that the original recommendation was excessive and disavowed it, though did not offer a new recommendation.
Trump followed this with attacks on prosecutors and the judge overseeing the case, claiming on Twitter that they were biased against Stone and Trump and unfair in their prosecution of the president’s longtime political adviser.
On Thursday, those attacks turned to jury members as both Trump and his allies claimed that the foreperson was biased. After Fox News ran a story claiming that some jurors held political biases against the president, Trump took to Twitter to echo the attacks.
Now it looks like the fore person in the jury, in the Roger Stone case, had significant bias. Add that to everything else, and this is not looking good for the “Justice” Department. @foxandfriends @FoxNews
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 13, 2020
Some close allies joined in, including South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham.
“Every American is entitled to political views, but no American should ever face a jury with seething political bias in a case that involves politics,” he wrote on Twitter. “Simply not fair.”
Pelosi pushed back, saying on Thursday that Trump’s attempts to interfere in Stone’s sentencing was an abuse of power.
“This is an abuse of power that the president is again trying to manipulate federal law enforcement to serve his political interests,” she said, via The Independent. “This is not what America is about. It is so wrong.”
Pelosi added that Trump now believes he is above the law, an argument that House prosecutors made during Trump’s impeachment trial. They argued that Trump’s attempts to pressure Ukraine into launching an investigation of potential political rival Joe Biden was also an abuse of power, and warned that he could take even more drastic actions if he were acquitted.
In her remarks on Thursday, Pelosi said that Trump is taking similar action and called on Republicans to repudiate his behavior.
Trump has hinted that he would consider a pardon for Stone, but said he was not ready to make a decision on it yet.