This morning, Walter Shaub expressed some of the disgust I am feeling over the Barr confirmation hearing and the media coverage of the hearing. First of all, the performance of the Democrats, their utter failure to confront Barr with his unsuitability for the position of Attorney General, left me little hope that there will ever be a just response to the crimes of the Trump Administration.
The appointment of Barr will be a disaster for the country and spells the end of any attempt to bring justice to the people occupying and colluding with the White House. But, there was no moral outrage from the Democrats, no attempt to educate the public about the importance of the Attorney General’s position with regard to the Mueller case. The Democrats behaved like this was just business as usual, joking with Barr, making (what they believed were) cute little asides about his family and his grandson. It was revolting. Democracy, what little we have left, is at stake and they make jokes.
Second, Barr’s shameless auditioning for the position in a memo advertising his contempt for the Mueller probe, should have disqualified him. Every Democrat on that committee should have set their hair on fire protesting this confirmation and telling the American public why. Instead, they asked questions about immigration and drug sentencing as if this were a legitimate nominee.
Third, the media went on and on and on and on about what Barr said in the confirmation hearing. What universe are they living in that they think what Barr said makes one goddamn bit of difference in terms of what he will do. These people will do anything to get and stay in power, anything. Anybody who believes that they can be taken at their word, or held to their positions is a baby.
William Barr was nominated for the position of Attorney General because he had already signaled to Trump that he would protect him and subvert any attempt to bring this loathsome administration to justice. William Barr was nominated because of his reactionary legal opinions about the unitary executive and the fact that he supported the pardon of seven of the people implicated in the Iran/Contra scandal. He has already demonstrated himself to be complicit in absolving those in power for their criminality.
This is a quote from Morning Edition (Johnson, Carrie, 1/14/19, William Barr supported pardons in an earlier “Witch Hunt'” Iran/Contra. Morning Edition)
“Then-Attorney General Barr supported the president’s (HWBush’s) decision (to issue pardons) in the Iran-Contra case, which gave clemency to people who had been officials in the administration of President Ronald Reagan, including former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger. He had been set to go on trial to face charges about lying to Congress.
To the man who led the Iran-Contra investigation, however, the pardons represented a miscarriage of justice.
“It demonstrates that powerful people with powerful allies can commit serious crimes in high office, deliberately abusing the public trust without consequences,” said Lawrence Walsh, the independent prosecutor in the case, at the time of the pardons.
Barr said later that he believed Bush had made the right decision and that he felt people in the case had been treated unfairly.