Nadler Leading the Pack Against Barr but Holder Contempt Vote was Shameful?

by Daveda Gruber:

On Wednesday House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., led his pack of Democrats to hold Attorney General Barr in contempt of Congress.

The contempt charge has been led by Nadler and has Barr allegedly accused for not handing over documents related to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe ˗˗ declaring the move necessary as the country enters a “constitutional crisis.”

Nadler also alleged that Barr acted as President Trump’s personal attorney.

Watch this video put out by MSNBC:

Oh my, things have certainly changed since 2012. In that year the shoe was on the other foot. House Republicans took the same step against then-AG Eric Holder for refusing to hand over documents related to the Fast and Furious gun-running scandal.

Remember Fast and Furious? Of course you do. All of us have recollections of where DOJ officials tracked thousands of guns smuggled across the border and then did nothing to stop them.

Well, Nadler was so against Holder being held in contempt that he tweeted this:

And they did. Over one hundred members of Congress walked out of Congress over the vote to hold the Obama-era DOJ leader in contempt.

Donald Trump Jr. noticed the “irony” that Nadler had displayed and tweeted  about it:

The House Minority Leader, at that time in 2012,  Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., argued House Republicans were more politically motivated in attacking Holder than driven to get to the bottom of the failed operation.

Pelosi said, “What is happening here is shameful.”

You can’t make this stuff up. In the year 2012 Pelosi was so against Holder being held in contempt and she made sure she put her two cents in. Watch these video clips and how Pelosi felt about Holder being held in contempt of Congress:

Former Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, wrote an op-ed for FOX News and said that the White House ‘stonewalling’ Congress represents an attack on ‘the essence of our democracy’ – as though stonewalling were some new phenomena. Where was Nadler’s righteous indignation when the stonewalling came from a Democratic White House?”

In an article by Politico, it was written that Fast and Furious has finally come to a conclusion and both sides said they maintained their disagreements but were dropping their appeals and the underlying lawsuit.

A settlement in a seven-year legal battle between the House and the Justice Department over records related to a gun-running investigation known as Operation Fast and Furious was publicly announced Wednesday just as similar clashes continue to intensify between the House and Trump administration.

The deal ends a lawsuit the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee filed in 2012 after the House voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt for refusing to release some records the panel demanded about the probe, during which law enforcement officials watched but did not intervene as up to 2,000 weapons were illegally sold.

The fight over the records ended more than a year ago, but a proposed settlement ran aground last fall after U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson signaled that she would refuse to wipe out her rulings in the case.

Both the Obama administration and the House objected to aspects of her decisions, but the executive branch had the larger grievance, as Jackson rejected the Justice Department’s longstanding position that courts have no proper role in resolving battles between Congress and federal agencies over access to records.

In the settlement filed Wednesday, both sides said they maintained their disagreements with Jackson’s decisions but were dropping their appeals and the underlying lawsuit.

 “The Parties agree that because subsequent developments have obviated the need to resolve those issues in an appeal in this case, the District Court’s holdings should not in any way control the resolution of the same or similar issues should they arise in other litigation between the Committee and the Executive Branch, and hereby waive any right to argue that the judgment of the District Court or any of the District Court’s orders or opinions in this case have any preclusive effect in any other litigation,” the agreement says.

Is this a big coincidence that Nadler is being held in contempt of Congress but “Fast and Furious”  just finally got an agreement worked out on both sides agreeing not to use an appeal?

If we don’t pay attention and we are not “a fly on the wall in Congress” who knows what we’d miss.

In my humble opinion, I don’t see Barr being hurt by any of these allegations by the Democratic side of Congress. He has only gone by the rule of law and has not broken it.

Did Pelosi Accuse Barr of Lying to Congress?

by Daveda Gruber:

Late Thursday morning, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi D-Calif., went on the record during a public press conference and said that Attorney General William Barr “lied to Congress.”

In a closed-door meeting Pelosi also allegedly told her colleagues that Barr committed a crime. She allegedly told Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., “We saw [Barr] commit a crime when he answered your question.”

Pelosi was referring to a hearing on April 9. Crist had asked whether Barr knew what prompted reports that prosecutors on the special counsel team were frustrated with his initial summary.

Barr denied the allegation by saying that he did not.

This week “The Washington Post” reported that Special Counsel Robert Mueller contacted Barr, both in a letter and in a phone call, to express concerns. This came after Barr released his four-page summary of Mueller’s findings in March.

Mueller wanted Barr to release the executive summaries written by the special counsel’s office which stated that a four-page memo to Congress that described the principal conclusions of the investigation into President Trump “did not fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of Mueller’s work.

Mueller made it clear that he did not feel that Barr’s summary was inaccurate. Instead, Mueller told Barr that media coverage of the letter had “misinterpreted” the results of the probe concerning obstruction of justice.

Pelosi, said publicly, “He lied to Congress. And if anybody else did that, it would be considered a crime,” she told reporters. “Nobody is above the law. Not the president of the United States. Not the attorney general.”

Pelosi was then asked if Barr should go to jail for the alleged crime.

Pelosi replied, “There is a process involved here and as I said, I’ll say it again, the committee will have to come to how we will proceed.”

You can see and hear the comments by Pelosi here:

The Justice Department did not take the comments by Pelosi lightly.

Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said,  “Speaker Pelosi’s baseless attacks on the Attorney General is reckless, irresponsible and false.”

What AG Rod Rosenstein Says is Bizarre

by Daveda Gruber:

Attorney General William Barr had an ally in Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein when Rosenstein told the Wall Street Journal that he believed it was strange to say the attorney general was misleading the public.

Rosenstein’s comment came as he defended Barr’s handling of the Robert Mueller report. Barr testified before a House appropriations subcommittee.

The highly anticipated Mueller report has caused a rather big stir in Washington D.C. among lawmakers since it was wrapped up.

Rosenstein appointed Mueller to serve as special counsel for the United States Department of Justice.

Rosenstein who is 54 years old, told the Wall Street Journal that he believed it was strange to say the attorney general was misleading the public.

Rosenstein said, “He’s being as forthcoming as he can, and so this notion that he’s trying to mislead people, I think is just completely bizarre.”

Rosenstein also said, “It would be one thing if you put out a letter and said, ‘I’m not going to give you the report. What he said is, ‘Look, it’s going to take a while to process the report. In the meantime, people really want to know what’s in it. I’m going to give you the top-line conclusions.’ That’s all he was trying to do.”

Rosenstein was not about to give up too much information but he did call on the public to have “tremendous confidence” in Barr.

Barr has defended his decision to send a letter to Congress detailing Mueller’s principal conclusions. This was done because the public would not have tolerated waiting weeks for information that took Mueller and his team nearly two years to put together.

Mueller’s investigation concluded in late March and since then Barr has received the nearly 400-page confidential report. Barr, in turn, sent his four-page summary letter to Congress two days later.

In that letter, Barr wrote that Mueller found no evidence of Trump-Russia collusion despite efforts by “Russian-affiliated individuals to assist the Trump campaign.”

Also noted was that Mueller had not exonerated President Trump on the issue of obstruction of justice.

The Mueller report will be made public in a week but that version will be redacted.

Rosenstein stayed in his position at the Department of Justice “at Barr’s request” saying, “For me, it’s a real privilege.” He hopes to begin a new job toward the end of the summer.

In Capital Hill testimony, Barr said that “spying did occur” against the 2016 Trump campaign.

It’s very clear that Democrats on the Hill were notably disturbed by that claim. In fact, even former FBI Director James Comey made a claim that he had no idea what Barr was talking about when he said that “spying did occur” against the 2016 Trump campaign.

Comey said, “I have no idea what he’s talking about so it’s hard for me to comment. When I hear that kind of language used, it’s concerning because the FBI and the Department of Justice conduct court-ordered electronic surveillance. I have never thought of that as spying.”

So, if spying does not include electronic devices, why have people who were being spied on always thought that their phone was tapped? What are listening devices? When someone goes to a meeting with a wire to record the events or to have agents listening in real time, is it surveillance or spying? Or are the two, if not similar, the same thing?

The covering up has just begun. Not only do I want to see the Mueller report but I want to find out what or who Barr is investigating next.

Is the Mueller Probe Illegal?

by Daveda Gruber:

At the end of the week we still wait for Special Counsel Robert Mueller Probe to draw to a close. We’ve waited this long; what’s more time? Patience sometimes wears thin.

On Friday morning President Trump took to Twitter to give his thoughts to the American people. The theme of Trump’s tweets, once again, took aim at the  Russia investigation by Mueller as the president’s transparency on social media came to the forefront as he commented.

Trump tweeted:

As Americans wait for the Mueller Probe to end and would love to see the final results, Trump speculated on if Mueller’s team will complete the investigation and submit a report to Attorney General William Barr.

The investigation should be drawing to a close as we wait for the results. The expected departure of top prosecutor Andrew Weissmann makes the assumption of the end of the probe a reality.
Weissmann led the charge on the case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. At this time, it is known that Manafort will face 81 months in prison.

A spokesman from New York University Law School noted that Weissmann will be leaving Mueller’s team “in the near future” and that they were in talks with Weissmann, who had done work with the university in the past, to return to the Law School.

Good deduction. Still, there is no guarantee on when the report will actually come. In the meantime, we wait for Mueller to submit his report and then for Barr to review it. It is then expected that Barr will create his own report to send to Republican and Democratic leaders of the Senate and House Judiciary Committees.

An explanation of the special counsel’s findings would follow. Ultimately, it is the attorney general who is the official who decides what, if anything, in the report can become public.

Trump’s criticism of the investigation on Twitter comes after hundreds of pages of transcripts were released from fired FBI Special Agent Peter Strzok’s and his lover at the time, former FBI counsel Lisa Page’s closed-door interviews before the House Judiciary Committee last summer.

Page’s testimony was rather informative. It confirmed that FBI officials had very little evidence at the beginning of the investigation in August 2016.

Page stated that the FBI “knew so little” about whether the allegations were “true or not true,” and had a “paucity of evidence because we are just starting down the path” of vetting the allegations.
You can read all of Page’s testimony here:

Lisa Page Interview Day 1 by on Scribd

Lisa Page Interview Day 2 by on Scribd

Strzok and Page became famous for their exchange of numerous anti-Trump text messages. The pair worked on the FBI’s initial investigation into Russian meddling and potential collusion with Trump campaign associates during the 2016 presidential election.

With all their anti-Trump rhetoric, the two also served, for a short period of time, on Mueller’s probe team.

We await a report but even though it appears to be coming soon, we really don’t know when or if it will be released.

Will William Barr be the next Attorney General?

by: Daveda Gruber:

President Trump’s pick for Attorney General, William Barr, has had a grueling time with Senators in the wake of facing confirmation to be President Trump’s chief law enforcement officer.

Barr is expected to be confirmed by the full Senate. On Thursday the Senate Judiciary Committee advanced the nomination of the 68 year old Barr.

The nomination  was advanced by a vote of twelve Republicans while ten Democrats voted against it.

Barr served as attorney general from 1991 to 1993 under the late President George H.W. Bush. He is set to be the second be the chief law enforcement officer under Trump.

Matthew Whitaker was appointed the acting attorney general after Jeff Sessions was fired from his position the day after the 2018 midterm elections.

Trump had complained that Sessions was weak, and did not protect him from the Russia investigation. Sessions recused himself early on in the investigation before Robert Mueller’s appointment. Sessions thought this was appropriate due to his involvement with the Trump campaign in 2016.

Democrats have seen Barr as someone who would exploit legal “loopholes” to hide Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report from the public and also resist subpoenas against the White House.

In the meantime, Democrats and Republicans have said that they believe that Mueller’s final report should be fully released.

Barr did say that he will be as transparent as possible under Justice Department regulations.

Regulations call for the report to be confidential. It only requires that the report explain the decisions to pursue or to decline prosecutions. That could be as simple as a short list or a report of hundreds of pages.

Barr, at his hearing last month, said, “I don’t know what at the end of the day, what will be releasable. I don’t know what Bob Mueller is writing,”

I believe that Barr is telling the truth because he has no reason to lie under oath.

It was disclosed by Barr that he had discussed Mueller’s investigation with Vice President Mike Pence. Barr insisted that he neither provided legal advice to the White House nor received any confidential information from Pence.

Barr had sent a memo to the Justice Department last year that was critical of the Russia probe. He explained that it was narrow in scope and based on potentially incomplete information.

Barr also said “it is vitally important” that Mueller be able to complete his Russia investigation.

Barr said, “I have the utmost respect for Bob and his distinguished record of public service. When he was named special counsel, I said that his selection was ‘good news’ and that, knowing him, I had confidence he would handle the matter properly. I still have that confidence today.”

It seems that Barr is honest. He has no problem saying good things about Mueller.

Barr told senators that Trump did not seek any assurances or promises before nominating him.

Trump has called the Russia probe as a “witch hunt,” but Barr was adamant in defending Mueller’s work.

Barr said at his hearing, “I don’t believe Mr. Mueller would be involved in a witch hunt.”

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who has taken on oversight of the investigation, made Mueller special counsel. Rosenstein is expected to leave his post at the Justice Department in the coming weeks.

Barr had served as deputy attorney general and assistant attorney general overseeing the Office of Legal Counsel during that administration. He covered work ranging from combating violent crime to investigating the Pan Am 103 bombing. Barr also coordinated counter-terror activities during the first Gulf War.

Barr worked with the White House Domestic Policy staff for a year under then-President Ronald Reagan. In the 1970s, Barr worked in the Central Intelligence Agency as an analyst and assistant legislative counsel. During the time that he worked at the CIA, he studied law at George Washington University.

It seems inevitable that Barr will be confirmed. I hope he doesn’t trust Mueller too much.