The letter from White House legal counsel Emmet Flood to Barr, which was obtained by The Associated Press on Thursday, argues that Trump would, if necessary, assert executive privilege to prevent advisers from testifying.
The customary histrionics followed.
As CNBC notes, the Justice Department has responded to Pelosi's "deadly serious" accusation, spokeswoman Kerri Kupac calling the speaker's comment a "baseless attack on the Attorney General" that is "reckless, irresponsible and false". The usual suspects called for impeachment. This threatens to undermine a central objective for which the Department appointed the Special Counsel: "to assure full public confidence in the outcome of the investigations", Mueller wrote.
In the report, Mueller directly explained how those internal Justice Department rules against indicting a president had a major impact on his internal deliberations.
While the empty-chair hearing featured plenty of theatrics, the real fight between Barr and Nadler is over the Mueller report. He certainly wouldn't know that no criminality was uncovered.
Barr several times described what he thought Trump's motives were in some of the episodes that Mueller investigated for possible obstruction. The report also detailed a series of actions Trump took to try to impede the investigation. There's been no evidence to contradict his claim.
The letter is also critical of Mueller for not fulfilling his obligation to "make a prosecutorial decision on obstruction".
And to be fair, the Mueller investigation and report have driven almost everyone in Washington to the brink of insanity. And that is Barr's other sin: refusing to play Mueller's game.
Barr told lawmakers that he considered the letter "a bit snitty", and Mueller himself had told him that his principal concern was not with Barr's summary but with the media reports on the summary.
"He's here", Cohen said, pointing to the chicken and referring to AG Barr who is not attending after a grilling in the Senate.
The Justice Department also told the committee that it would not comply with a congressional subpoena for an unredacted version of special c ounsel Robert S. Mueller III's report and underlying investigative material. In case you missed it yesterday, Sen. Attorney General William Barr: "There were notes taken of the call". What was the point of the Mueller report, then?
"The (special counsel's) inverted-proof-standard and "exoneration" statements can be understood only as political statements, issuing from persons (federal prosecutors) who in our system of government are rightly expected never to be political in the performance of their duties", Flood said, echoing Trump's longstanding position that Mueller's team is biased.
"Because they wanted it to look like an impeachment hearing, because they won't bring impeachment proceedings", he said. Would Democrats accept Barr's findings?
As for the House Democrats, they spent today mocking Barr with props.
Yet Barr, who dropped some interesting tidbits in yesterday's hearings, seems willing to investigate the impetus of the Russian Federation "collusion" investigation, the role of the infamous dossier, and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants used by the previous administration for "spying".
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