Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., questioned Attorney General William Barr about his motives for intervening to recommend a lower prison sentence for Roger Stone, a close ally of President Donald Trump. In a July 28 hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, Johnson asked about Barr’s decision to recommend the reduced sentence after Trump tweeted criticism of the Justice Department’s initial recommendation in February. The questions prompted a heated exchange between Johnson and Barr.
“You’re expecting the American people to believe that you did not do what Trump wanted you to do when you changed that sentencing recommendation and lowered it for Roger Stone?” Johnson said. “You think the American people don’t understand you were carrying out Trump’s will?”
Johnson questioned Barr during a committee hearing examining whether the attorney general inappropriately politicized the Justice Department. Democrats launched the investigation earlier this year over Barr’s handling of the case against Stone, whose 40-month prison sentence was commuted by the president this month. Democrats have since expanded their probe to several subsequent episodes in which they believe Barr is working for Trump’s own benefit.
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