Obama-appointed judge allows Hillary, AOC donors in jury pool as Sussman trail gets underway

The trial for former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann got underway this week, the prosecution of the Washington attorney with ties to the Democratic Party being part of Special Counsel John Durham’s investigation of the investigators who delivered the Trump-Russian collusion hoax that dominated the nation for better than two years.

Sussmann faces a single count of making false statements to the FBI in September 2016 about potential ties between a Kremlin-tied bank and a Trump Organization computer server, after he claimed that he wasn’t “acting on behalf of any client” when he handed over purported evidence of the secret backchannel — no link was ever found.

If jury selection is any indication, Durham’s team may well have their hands full convicting Sussmann, as the New York Post reported that as many as “three Hillary Clinton donors” were among the prospective jurors, including one woman who donated to U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.

That Clinton supporter, a former bartender who appeared to be in her twenties, according to the newspaper, was put on the panel after she assured a Sussmann defense lawyer she could be impartial after being told that neither Clinton nor former President Donald Trump were on trial.

Another woman, who appeared to be in her forties, said she likely donated to Clinton’s 2016 campaign but wasn’t entirely sure, the Post reported. The juror said she could be impartial, although she “certainly had a strong preference for one candidate over the other.”

Georgetown University law professor Jonathan Turley said on “Fox & Friends” that the special counsel objected to one of the Clinton donors and was overruled by U.S. District Judge Christopher Cooper, an Obama appointee, who said of the process, “Picking a jury is more of an art than a science.”

In reporting on the jury being seated, Fox News noted that the panel “includes one federal government employee who told the judge they donated to Democrats in 2016 and another government employee who told the judge they “strongly” dislike former President Trump — both of those jurors told the judge they could be impartial throughout the trial.”

“I remembered that the 2016 election was kind of a mess and that there were a lot of shenanigans,” said the juror who admitted her dislike of Trump, assuring the court she could be impartial in the trial “if it’s not directly about Trump.”

Durham was reportedly in the courtroom Monday as his team took part in the jury selection process.

With the trial being held in Washington, the Post shared these daunting statistics: “In 2016, DC voters favored Clinton over Trump, 90.9% to 4.1%, and Democrats in the nation’s capital now outnumber Republicans, 76.5% to 5.4%, according to an April 30 tally posted online by the local Board of Elections.”

Former FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith was the first person to be charged by Durham and he was sentenced to one year of probation after pleading guilty to doctoring an email to get a FISA warrant allowing a wiretap against former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page to be renewed.

The trial is expected to last around two weeks and Sussmann would face a maximum of five years in prison if convicted.

Tom Fitton, president of the conservative Judicial Watch activist group, told the Post that a guilty verdict further validates Trump being the victim of a crime while serving as president.

“If Sussmann, one of Hillary Clinton’s top campaign lawyers, is convicted, it will further confirm that Trump is a crime victim,” Fitton said.

“I would expect him to continue to say that [the government] illegally spied on him and that Hillary did it,” he said. “And if Clinton runs, this anti-corruption message is even more likely to be front and center.”


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