Michael Sussmann’s Motion to Dismiss Is a Flaming Pile of Garbage – Opinion

As RedState reported, lawyers for Michael Sussmann, who has been indicted under John Durham’s investigation for lying to the FBI, have entered a motion to dismiss the charge against their client. That led to a rash of hot takes insisting that this proves Durham doesn’t have the goods, but a closer look at the request shows it be much more of a desperate heave into the end zone than a play expected to succeed.

To start, let’s note that defense lawyers would not be doing their jobs properly if they didn’t try to get the prosecution dismissed. The existence of this motion to dismiss does not in any way serve as evidence that Durham’s charge against Sussmann is specious. The filing is actually very weak. Let’s take a look at the key parts of this.

Sussmann’s argument boils down to the idea that his lying to the FBI was ancillary to any decision to open an investigation into the false Alpha Bank allegation involving Donald Trump and Russia. Therefore, according to the motion, the prosecution should be dismissed because the lie doesn’t meet the bar of being material.

That’s because Sussmann relied on his name and reputation to get an appointment with James Baker. If his now-debunked Alpha Bank information spoke for itself, regardless of Sussmann’s political connections, he could have just emailed it over. He instead, acting as a Clinton campaign representative and pressing the FBI to investigate the matter. To make his own information appear more credible, he chose to lie about the organization he worked for to get the FBI’s attention.

But while nothing is a given in the judicial system, the prosecution will certainly have a strong case that Sussmann’s lie was, in fact, material to the FBI’s decision-making process. Remember, we aren’t proving guilt or innocence at this point, only whether the threshold is met to continue the prosecution.

As a point of comparison, there’s also the fact that such motions failed during the prosecutions brought in Robert Mueller’s investigation. Michael Flynn’s supposed falsehood to the FBI did not appear to be material regarding much of anything, yet the judge did not dismiss his case. George Papadopoulos was the same. He simply misrepresented a date to the FBI. Both cases were different in that the FBI did NOT base its decision on what it was told.

If those interactions met the bar of being material, there’s little argument Sussmann’s interaction doesn’t. James Baker actually has the advantage. testified to the House Select Committee in 2017 that Sussmann’s behavior was unique and unusual. If it were otherwise insignificant and irrelevant, why engage in unusual and unique behavior?

Further, when looking at the claim in the motion that Durham’s indictment doesn’t allege Sussmann’s lie was material to the FBI’s investigation, that is not dispositive that it wasn’t. Sussmann’s lawyers appear to be arguing that the investigation would have happened anyway because Rodney Joffe (who was caught up in the latest Durham bombshell about Hillary’s spying on Donald Trump) had the information and had a close relationship with the FBI.

Sean Davis points out, however, that Sussmann did not go to the FBI if it were true. Joffe should do all of the heavy lifting. Sussmann seemed to have been counting on Joffe’s influence in order for the FBI investigation to take place, making his false claims material. In order to appear genuine and worthwhile of investigation, all the info was funnelled into FBI by different seemingly unconnected sources. They were actually all conspiring to fabricate a false story for political gain.

It is clear that Durham knew these arguments would be presented. Until he has a chance to respond, this story is incomplete; so be very wary of left-leaning “legal analysts” rushing to proclaim this motion to dismiss damning. It’s not, and it does not have a good chance of succeeding.

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