In the Court’s view, in seeking leave to dismiss the charge against Mr. Sullivan, the United States Attorney is not being faithful to a cardinal principle of our legal system, i.e., that all persons stand equal before the law and are to be treated equally in a court of justice once judicial processes are invoked. It is quite apparent that Mr. Sullivan is being treated differently from others who have been charged with the same crime in similar circumstances.
If there were a legitimate reason for the disparate treatment, the Court would view the matter differently. But the United States Attorney refused to allow the Court to inquire into why, in the circumstances of this case where Mr. Sullivan had already been charged with the crime, either a forfeiture of collateral or an adjudication would make a difference in the immigration application.
But there is more. If, in fact, a determination that Mr. Sullivan had possessed marijuana is a factor which, under immigration law, the immigration authorities are legally charged with taking into account when deciding Mr. Sullivan’s application, why should the United States Attorney make a judgment that, despite the immigration law, the charge should be dismissed because it would “adversely affect” his application? If other applicants for a certain immigration status have had their applications “adversely affected” by a conviction or a forfeiture of collateral for possession of marijuana, then why should Mr. Sullivan, who is in the same position, not have to deal with the same consequences?
In short, the Court sees no legitimate reason why Mr. Sullivan should be treated differently, or why the Violation Notice issued to him should be dismissed. The only reasons given for the dismissal flout the bedrock principle of our legal system that all persons stand equal before the law.
Last April, Sullivan wrote:
My view is that no one is above the law, and that when a society based on law prosecutes the powerless and excuses the powerful, it is corroding its own soul.
POSTSCRIPT: I stopped paying attention to Andrew Sullivan long before last April, but Sullivan being who he is, I knew he must have said something like this at some point. It wasn’t hard to google up this instance. There’s probably more.
UPDATE: Patterico offers another stunning hypocrisy on Sullivan’s part. (Warning: link quotes a vulgar advertisement).