A federal appeals court has denied a request by Michael Flynn and the Department of Justice to shut down the investigation against him.
The 8-2 decision restores power to a judge to question the Justice Department’s moves in the politically divisive case when Attorney General William Barr dropped charges against President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser earlier this year despite twice pleading guilty to lying under oath to lying to the FBI.
Flynn had fought District Judge Emmet Sullivan’s decision to ask a third-party lawyer to argue against the Justice Department’s dismissal in the case, and his plans to hold a hearing, which has not yet happened.
Monday’s decision adds what may be the most consequential round yet to what’s become an unusual and deeply political court case in an election year, and one of the most symbolic prosecutions of a Trump adviser during this presidency.
In an earlier decision, a panel of three judges on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 to allow Flynn’s case to be tossed.
Today’s ruling from the full court reverses that decision.
The appeals court also declined to reassign Flynn’s case to another trial judge, after Flynn’s attorneys accused Judge Sullivan of being biased against Flynn.
I still maintain that, at the end of this whole sordid affair, Donald Trump will pardon Flynn.
The full DC Circuit vote, split 8-2, is a flex of power to check the executive branch: “We have no trouble answering that question in the negative," the appeals court wrote.
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) August 31, 2020
— 🧪pHirst (@pHirst16) August 31, 2020
It’s interesting watching the department of justice that is funded by our tax dollars arguing to have charges dropped for a self-admitted criminal. Never imagined seeing something like that in my lifetime. This administration is more corrupt than every past one combined.
— Jack©️ (@Jackasaurus3) August 31, 2020