It was announced last week that President Donald Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, was sentenced to less than four years behind bars, a punishment decried by many in Washington and in legal circles as too lenient — and lighter than what many poorer, less powerful Americans are given for less serious crimes. In making his decision, Judge T.S. Ellis chose to forgo sentencing guidelines for Manafort's convictions for tax fraud, bank fraud and foreign lobbying, which could have given him between 19 and 25 years in prison.

To discuss the political and legal significance of the ruling, Jim Braude was joined by retired federal judge Nancy Gertner, now a lecturer at Harvard Law School, and Bruce Singal, a defense attorney who worked alongside Robert Mueller in the U.S. Attorney’s office in Boston.