Confirmation Hearings For William Barr, Trump's New Meatball Idiot AG Nominee, Begin TOMORROW!
Tomorrow gonna be LIT! The confirmation hearings for William Barr, Donald Trump's latest nominee to be his own personal little meatball at the Justice Department, begin tomorrow morning, and Wonkette will be liveblogging every goddamn bit of it, unless it goes like really long and we get bored or new Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Lindsey Graham starts literally speaking Russian with a South Carolina accent. (Be here at 9:30 AM Eastern!)
We have told you multiple times that we have, ahem, some MISGIVINGS about Willliam Barr. The right-wing side of the internet has been stewing over the fact that reportedly Robert Mueller's wife and William Barr's wife do Bible study together, which means Barr is #DeepState and will let Mueller do all the witch hunts to Donald Trump, lest Mrs. Barr decide to retaliate by viciously paper cutting Mrs. Mueller with the book of Romans. Those are not the same as our misgivings about William Barr.
As we discussed when Barr was nominated, the major pro to his nomination is that he has had this job before, back during the Poppy Bush administration, which means he already knows where the bathrooms are at the Justice Department. And he is a creature of DC, which means he theoretically has half a clue about how our institutions work and isn't likely to just run in there and start fucking shit up for Trump. And really, for real, he knows Robert Mueller, and they like each other.
Barr has also said that Mueller's team is TOO DEMOCRAT and that we really need to investigate Hillary Clinton's Russian uraniums; and he thinks it's fine for presidents to call for investigations into their political enemies; and he has a batshit view of executive power and thinks the president cannot obstruct justice, therefore you can't investigate Donald Trump for firing James Comey to obstruct the Russia investigation; and he wrote an unsolicited memo to that effect that basically sounds like a job application to be Trump's new meatball; and remember that time in the 1980s and early 1990s, when there was a thing called the Iran-Contra affair? Yes, well, at the end of the Poppy Bush administration, Barr was basically the ringleader of Poppy's #PardonParty, where Bush pardoned literally everybody who had been convicted of crimes in that scandal, on his way out the door, just coincidentally as Bush himself was starting to face legal exposure in the investigation.
Can't imagine why Trump picked him. It is a mystery wrapped in a conundrum!
Of course, Barr wrote his memo about the Russia investigation -- led by the husband of the lady his wife does Bibles with -- without actually having inside information on the evidence Mueller has, so it's possible if he gets confirmed, he'll go in to work on his first day, get a briefing, and immediately recuse himself like a common Jeff Sessions, for the crime of talking out his ass about the investigation without knowing dick about it. Or maybe he'll just take a hands off approach and let Mueller do his work. (Watch for Democratic senators to demand Barr follow any recusal recommendations from ethics lawyers at the Justice Department during the hearings. As for other questions Barr might be asked, Jennifer Rubin has some very good suggestions.)
It's also notable that these hearings will be happening against the backdrop of our brand new normal, where we know for sure that the FBI and Mueller have investigated whether Trump is literally a Russian intelligence asset, and with our new understanding of Mueller's investigation, which is that the "obstruction" angle is not actually separate from the "collusion/conspiracy" angle, because it's very possible Trump's obstruction is a function of his status as an American president compromised by a hostile foreign power.
Maybe Barr has spent this weekend saying to himself, "Holy Jesus SHIT, what have I gotten myself into?" and will come to his confirmation hearings ready to be a patriot.
Or maybe he won't.
Barr has released his opening statement for tomorrow, which you can read right here. He pledges to be very independent, just like he was during Poppy Bush's administration (*cough* PARDONS! *cough*). He says Mueller should be allowed to finish his investigation unimpeded, and he confirms that he and Mueller are pals, but does not confirm that their wives are just fuckin' Bible-ing all over the place like a couple of common Christians who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal lord and savior. He promises that when Mueller's investigation is over, we will get to see the results. He says that memo he wrote was about one little tiny kind of obstruction of justice, and does not mean he thinks presidents are above the law. And he actually says some things that sound downright LIB-GAY about how we need to have zero tolerance for hate crimes, and that under his watch, protecting the integrity of our elections will be paramount.
It all sounds very nice, except for the parts about immigration, and if we didn't know better, we'd think Barr sounds like a pretty good candidate for the job, or at least as good as you're gonna get from a Republican president.
But we do know better, so we'll just have to fucking see, now won't we?
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