Today, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) sent a letter signed by 23 Judiciary Committee Democratic Members confirming Attorney General William Barr will testify before the Committee on March 31st to address numerous concerns regarding his leadership of the Department of Justice and the President’s improper influence over the Department and our criminal justice system.
Full text of the letter confirming Attorney General Barr’s testimony can be found below and here:
Thanks for fixing that headline. NYT should bring you in as a fact checker.
Here’s another term being tossed around in recent headlines about Trump’s mob-style behavior that’s really bugging me: “unleashed.” As in “Trump Unleashed” – that in no way conveys the heinous nature of what he’s actually doing – it’s just red meat for his base. It makes it sound like he has been liberated – as if all those pesky constitutional checks and balances were just getting in his way. What a crock.
The buck did stop there…with Congress. And flagrant misuse of power by T.
Former U.S. attorney Chuck Rosenberg, who has served in both Democratic and Republican administrations, said, “This president is not going to change. We need adults to step up and check his behavior. There was a demonstrated lack of spine recently in the United States Senate. Maybe they have a breaking point and maybe they don’t. One of the things that people said about this Congress is that they’ve lost their authority. That’s not true. They’ve just chosen not to exercise it.”
Susan Glasser* 's newest column: “The constraints are gone. The leverage is lost. One ABC News interview with a single Cabinet official is not going to restore it. Trump, unhinged and unleashed, may actually turn out to be everything we feared.”
Numerous House Democrats are now advocating for the House to solicit testimony from the four prosecutors involved in the initial recommendation for Stone, aides tell me. Four have withdrawn from the case, and one quit his job.
Two senior Democratic aides told me many House members want to see these hearings well in advance of Barr’s planned testimony to the Judiciary Committee on March 31.
“Time is of the essence, since this scandal gets worse by the hour,” one senior aide to a member of Judiciary told me, adding that hearing from the four prosecutors could help create “a record of what happened before Barr gets to set the narrative.”
Another senior House aide told me there’s a “pretty widespread sentiment” among members that the four prosecutors must be heard from, “to get the full story of what’s happening under Barr’s tenure.”
“Career prosecutors are quitting, and Congress needs to understand why,” this aide continued, adding that there’s an expectation that members might soon grow more public in this demand.
It’s not clear which committee might do this — it could be Judiciary or Oversight, which also played a role in the impeachment inquiry. It’s also not clear how open House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is to it. A senior Democratic leadership aide told me this has been discussed "at the staff level,” but no decisions have been made.
Yes, the story is murky…and a stitched together (plausible) explanation as to what might have happened, but made especially clear that Barr NEVER heard anything from T, and was NEVER aligning himself with T’s wishes. Baloney.
Here’s the thing…Barr is setting the story line…and waiting 6 weeks to give an explanation. But his allegiances to T are clear. Barr is his toadie.
ABC News’s Pierre Thomas pressed Barr on a question we’ve often asked here, which is how that could even happen? How could the attorney general be caught so off-guard by a recommendation he had been involved in?
“I’m afraid it’s one of those situations,” Barr said. “I’m confused, too. And I think it really was a situation of miscommunication.”
Okay, fair enough. Let’s take that at face value for now.
So what happened after that supposed miscommunication and after Barr overruled the prosecutors? All four of them withdrew from the case, one resigned from a temporary position in Shea’s office, and another resigned from the government entirely. It is obvious these withdrawals and resignations were in protest.
Given the resignations and the supposed miscommunication, it would seem like a situation that the attorney general would want to get to the bottom of. How did the miscommunication happen, after all, and why did the prosecutors see fit to lodge such a protest?
But Barr apparently isn’t terribly curious about it. He said not only that he hadn’t spoken to the prosecutors, but that he also hadn’t learned why they resigned:
THOMAS: And you know, people have pride, though, and you could see how they would see as a public rebuke. You think that’s part of why they resigned in protest from the case?
BARR: I don’t know why they resigned.
THOMAS: So you’ve not had a chance to talk to them?
To be clear, three of these prosecutors remain in Barr’s employ, which would make it rather easy for him to demand answers of them. At the time of his interview, it had also been two days since they had withdrawn and resigned. Barr is puzzled by how all of this went down, but he hasn’t sought information from them about how this all might have gone haywire and why they quit?
At best, that seems like a real lack of curiosity from the man in charge of the Justice Department. Even from strictly a management perspective, figuring out what happened would seem to be Job No. 1 for Barr right now.
And that’s if you accept that this was indeed just a miscommunication. The fact that they lodged such protests suggests there might be something more to it. Barr either couldn’t or wouldn’t shed any light on that on Thursday. Someone probably should.
Rohrabacher openly stated at the time that he was working out a “deal” which included Assange and the White House. He said that the “deal” would be contingent on Assange providing information that would “prove” Trump did not collude with Russia during the campaign, but he did not provide specifics on what the White House was offering Assange in exchange – IMO, it seems likely a pardon would be on the table. Rohrabacher lays it out at 2:30 during this interview on Sept. 15, 2017.
So this was another case of Trump obstructing justice in plain sight. We need to subpoena Kelly and Rohrabacher and get to the bottom of what was in this “deal.” We know Kelly knew about this so Trump had to know about it as well, or was even directing it.
The only reason so far that Trump’s rabid base hasn’t managed to carry out any of the death plots they’ve cooked up thanks to his stochastic terrorism is they’re so blatant they keep getting caught. I worry about when we get one who can keep quiet until it’s too late.
The cloud of Russian collusion has hung over Trump since he was elected. Some have laughed it off, but all roads have always lead to Putin. With new revelations about a pardon offer to Julian Assange to cover up the Russia hack of the DNC, here’s a reminder of who Dana Rohrabacher is, and why Congress MUST subpoena him:
Press Release: Pelosi Statement on House Brief in Congressional Oversight Supreme Court Cases
Washington, D.C.– Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement as the U.S. House of Representatives filed a brief today with the Supreme Court in the consolidated cases of Trump v. Mazars and Trump v. Deutsche Bank, urging the Court to affirm previous court rulings that hold that Congress has the constitutional right to conduct oversight and issue subpoenas on behalf of the American people:
“The Constitution and the Courts agree: Congress clearly has the authority to conduct oversight and consider legislation on behalf of the American people, including by issuing subpoenas.
“As the House brief states, ‘Contrary to what President Trump and the Solicitor General contend, there is nothing unprecedented about Congressional subpoenas for documents that may shed light on Presidential affairs. What is unprecedented is the extraordinary breadth of the arguments that President Trump and the Solicitor General make about the supposed power of a President to thwart investigations in furtherance of Congress’s Article I legislative and oversight functions. Nothing in the text of the Constitution or this Court’s rulings supports the arguments of President Trump or the Solicitor General.’
“As the House brief makes clear, to carry out its constitutional work on behalf of the public, Congress has a rich history of routinely securing information related to Congress’s need for legislation and oversight. In response to Congressional requests and subpoenas, Presidents, their families, Executive Branch officials, and third parties have provided testimony and documents concerning Presidents’ personal and official actions. ‘For the Oversight Committee to understand whether existing financial disclosure and conflict-of-interest legislation is adequate to the challenges posed by this President’s unique financial arrangements, it must understand those arrangements. The Intelligence Committee must make similar inquiries to determine whether the President is subject to foreign financial leverage. And it is hard to imagine a more thorough and specific demonstration of need than exists for the Financial Services Committee’s investigation. Given the ocean of independent, investigative reporting connecting President Trump’s entities with possible illicit funding, it would be irresponsible for any Congressional investigation into those subjects not to examine those businesses.’
“The President’s ‘extraordinary’ insistence that he is above the law and that ‘Article II means I can do whatever I want’ – including trample over Congress’s constitutional oversight powers – is a threat to our Constitution, the rule of law and our republic. When oral argument is held on March 31, the House urges the Court to simply follow the Constitution and years of precedent dating from the earliest days of our nation’s history.”