Is U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan’s collusion cameo nearing its end?
On Thursday the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, on its own motion, ordered Judge Sullivan to respond within 10 days to the petition for a writ of mandamus filed by former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
Earlier this week, Flynn’s counsel, Sidney Powell, filed the petition for that extraordinary writ, asking the appellate court to instruct Sullivan to grant the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss the case against Flynn.
That was after Judge Sullivan not only declined to grant the prosecution’s motion, but (a) invited non-parties to intervene in the case by filing amicus briefs (transparently, to make arguments that he somehow has authority to deny DOJ’s motion); and (b) appointed one amicus, former federal judge John Gleeson, as a quasi-prosecutor to make arguments that prosecutors are declining to make in favor of entering a judgment of conviction and sentencing Flynn.
As I noted Wednesday, Sullivan’s encouragement of amicus briefs, which are not authorized in criminal cases, flies in the face of Sullivan’s own very firm orders previously declining to permit amicus briefs in Flynn’s case – some two dozen times by Powell’s count.
The appointment of Gleeson is equally astonishing and offensive to the principle of courts as impartial arbiters.