Attorney General Bill Barr has just thrown now-former Special Counsel Robert Mueller under the bus, and did so in a far less elegant and far more disrespectful manner than the former FBI Director would ever have conceived.
Mueller served under four U.S. presidents – two Republicans, and two Democrats – as FBI Director. And then under President Donald Trump as Special Counsel, investigating President Donald Trump.
On Wednesday morning, his final day in office before resigning as Special Counsel, Mueller in a surprise news conference talked to the American people for just nine minutes, permanently changing the trajectory of the Republican Party’s gaslighting. And he did so merely by reading aloud portions of his 448-page report on the Russia investigation that has been public for weeks.
On Thursday, in an interview that had been pre-arranged, and advertised barely minutes before Mueller’s news conference began, Attorney General Bill Barr threw his longtime friend and co-worker under the bus.
The Special Counsel, regardless of DOJ policy making it – as Mueller told the nation – literally “unconstitutional” to indict and therefore to even state that the President of the United States may have committed crimes, told CBS News that Mueller should have “reached a conclusion.”
Reaching a conclusion, as Barr described it, would have violated DOJ policy, but that fact did not seem to concern the Attorney General.
“I personally felt he could’ve reached a decision,” Barr told CBS News chief legal correspondent Jan Crawford during an exclusive interview taped in Anchorage, Alaska Thursday.
“The opinion says you cannot indict a president while he is in office, but he could’ve reached a decision as to whether it was criminal activity,” Barr told Crawford. “But he had his reasons for not doing it, which he explained and I am not going to, you know, argue about those reasons.”
Notice in the video Barr refers to the DOJ decades-old policy as an “opinion,” suggesting it is subject to interpretation. Legal experts disagree.
And those reasons are literally about what is and is not not just policy, but about what is and is not constitutional.
Barr also claimed that he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein “felt it was necessary” to make decision for Mueller – rather than telling Mueller that if he did not go further they would co-opt his two years of work and turn it into a gaslighting project to protect President Trump, which they then did.
NEW: Attorney General Barr tells @JanCBS he “personally felt” Special Counsel Robert Mueller “could’ve reached a decision” on obstruction of justice by President Trump.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) May 30, 2019
The full interview airs Friday morning.
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Watch Live: Day One of the Historic January 6 House Select Committee Hearing
It’s been 202 days since Donald Trump, then the President, incited the attack on the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to overturn a free and fair election. The January 6 insurrection, an act of domestic terrorism, an attempted coup, is one of the darkest days in American history.
At 9:30 AM Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS) will gavel in day one of the United States House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack, a bipartisan investigation into that dark day.
You can watch live below. The proceedings will also be carried and streamed on most major networks, including ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, and CNN. Fox News is expected to have a degree of coverage.
Today’s hearing will feature testimony from four officers who defended members of Congress and the Capitol on January 6, or, as Chairman Thompson said, “frontline heroes who put their lives on the line to protect our democracy.”
Here are several feeds for you to watch live:
‘It’s What Stupid People Do’: MSNBC’s Morning Joe Burns Kevin McCarthy for ‘Childish’ Games
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough ripped House minority leader Kevin McCarthy for making up “stupid” nicknames for a pair of Republicans who refuse to go along with Donald Trump’s election lies.
Reps. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) were among 10 GOP lawmakers who voted to impeach Trump for his role in the Jan. 6 insurrection, and they will sit on the House panel investigating that assault on democracy — and McCarthy mocked them as “Pelosi Republicans.”
“It’s what stupid people do,” Scarborough said. “If you look at the facts, which Kevin McCarthy doesn’t ever do, Liz Cheney has like a 95 percent [American Conservative Union] rating, 95 percent conservative rating over the course of her career, which is actually my conservative rating, but what I found out a long time ago and Liz certainly has known for some time now, obviously, by saying what’s going on, this Republican Party, Donald Trump’s Republican Party doesn’t care about ideas, doesn’t care about ideology, doesn’t care about conservatism, it is disconnected from conservatism.”
“It’s all tribal,” he continued, “it’s all about voodoo in medicine, violence on Jan. 6, it’s all about covering up actually what Donald Trump is doing, and so Kevin McCarthy resorts to childish name calling for, again, I don’t know what Adam’s lifetime conservative rating is, but Liz’s is 95 percent, one of the more conservative members in the United States Congress, by the way, and so, that’s what they resort to. Why? Because that’s all they have. They don’t have the facts on their side, they don’t have history on their side, so all he can do is act like act like a 3-year-old, or Donald Trump, same thing, and just throw names around. So lots of luck with that.”
“It’s not going to change the fact that four police officers are going to talk about how they were brutalized and almost killed by Donald Trump supporters on Jan. 6, as they were trying to actually overthrow the government and commit sedition against the United States of America and stop the voting, which is constitutionally mandated, of the Electoral College voting,” Scarborough concluded. “But that’s the party that Kevin McCarthy will always be associated with. Lots of luck with that, buddy, lots of luck with that.”
‘You Falsely Smeared My Wife and She’s Getting Death Threats’: Eric Swalwell Posts Angry Texts With Tucker Carlson
On Friday, The Daily Beast reported that Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) posted screenshots of an angry argument between him and Fox News host Tucker Carlson, who wanted to get him on the phone for a call.
“Tucker, I’m hesitant to do that. You falsely smeared my wife on Tuesday and she’s getting death threats,” said Swalwell, referring to a retracted Fox News story alleging that Swalwell’s campaign funneled money to a business employing his wife. “That’s way out of bounds. She’s a pregnant mom of a 4-year-old and a 2-year-old. Hit me all you like. But to go after her. That’s just wrong.”
“Carlson responded by calling the Democrat a ‘coward’ and then apparently phoning him a few minutes later,” reported Blake Montgomery. “Swalwell tweeted, ‘I’m just not that into you.'”
After years of lying about me and my family, @TuckerCarlson is losing his mind that I won’t return his calls. Sorry, Tucker, I’m just not that into you. Who knows what lie he’ll tell next? #TuckerTantrum pic.twitter.com/vwX7AfwJ1Z
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) July 23, 2021
Swalwell, the second-highest ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, has long been a target of rage for conservatives. Carlson has also accused Swalwell of aiding a Chinese spy — although experts have made clear that Swalwell in fact properly worked with the FBI to help upon learning the spy had tried to get information from him.
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