• We The People Podcast

The Executive and the Rule of Law

February 27, 2020

The controversy over the sentencing of President Trump’s former associate Roger Stone has raised larger questions about the role of the Department of Justice, presidential power, and the rule of law including: Should the president be able to influence sentencing in individual cases? What level of control should he have over DOJ? And, more broadly, how should the president exercise power? Host Jeffrey Rosen dives into those questions with Professor John Yoo, former Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel at the Justice Department, and Professor Kim Wehle, former assistant U.S. attorney in Washington, D.C.

Need a refresher on the Stone sentencing controversy? Here’s a timeline of events from ABC News.



John Yoo is the Emanuel S. Heller Professor of Law at Berkeley Law and the director of the Korea Law Center, the California Constitution Center, and the Law School’s Program in Public Law and Policy. From 2001 to 2003, he served as a deputy assistant attorney general in the Office of Legal Counsel at the U.S. Department of Justice, where he worked on issues involving foreign affairs, national security and the separation of powers. His forthcoming book is Defender in Chief: Donald Trump's Fight for Presidential Power.

Kimberly Wehle is an author, lawyer, media commentator, and professor of law at the University of Baltimore School of Law. She was an associate independent counsel in the Whitewater investigation under Kenneth Starr and an assistant US attorney in Washington, D.C. She is a CBS legal expert and the author of How to Read the Constitution and Why and the forthcoming book, What You Need to Know About Voting and Why.

​​​​​​Jeffrey Rosen is the president and CEO of the National Constitution Center, a nonpartisan nonprofit organization devoted to educating the public about the U.S. Constitution. Rosen is also professor of law at The George Washington University Law School and a contributing editor of The Atlantic.

Additional Resources

This episode was engineered by Dave Stotz with editing by Greg Scheckler, and produced by Jackie McDermott. Research was provided by Michael Markus and Lana Ulrich.

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