Attorney General William Barr has officially been put on notice: Hand over the unredacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report as well as the underlying evidence that went into it by Monday at 9 a.m. — or prepare to face contempt proceedings.
House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerry Nadler issued the final warning to Barr in a letter Friday morning.
“The committee is prepared to make every realistic effort to reach an accommodation with the department,” Nadler wrote. “But if the department persists in its baseless refusal to comply with a validly issued subpoena, the committee will move to contempt proceedings and seek further legal recourse.”
Barr has already ignored multiple requests from Nadler’s committee, including a subpoena that legally compelled Barr to hand over the full Mueller report by May 1.
“The department has offered no reason whatsoever for failing to produce the evidence underlying the report, except for a complaint that there is too much of it and a vague assertion about the sensitivity of law enforcement files,” Nadler wrote in his letter.
Barr also refused to attend a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday about his handling of the Mueller report, complaining that Democrats wanted to allow a staff attorney to do some of the questioning.
It’s unclear why Barr viewed that format as so outrageous, given that Republicans used the exact same tactic during Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, after Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault.
Barr’s actions to ignore congressional oversight and obstruct congressional investigations is all part of his attempt to protect Trump from scrutiny.
And Barr’s efforts to serve as Trump’s defense attorney rather than the chief law enforcement officer of the United States has led to calls for his resignation by nearly two-dozen Democratic lawmakers in both the House and Senate.
Up until now, Barr has yet to face any consequences for his actions.
Yet the ultimatum has now been set. The attorney general can either comply with the law or face contempt proceedings.
And judging by his track record, the latter sounds likely.
Published with permission of The American Independent.
IMAGE: Attorney General William Barr.