On Thursday morning Donald Trump got just what he wanted when he planted William Barr as his obedient lackey in the Justice Department. Barr held what he called a “press conference,” but was more of public sanitation of Trump’s clear and obvious criminal behavior, much of which was done in full view of the public. This will go down in history alongside the legal mendacity Nixon’s accomplices in Watergate.
Much of What Barr said in his remarks was the best evidence that he was being flagrantly servile to Trump. He began by describing the Mueller report as concerning “matters related to Russian attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.” And then he nearly ignored that entirely for the remainder of his remarks. Barr never explicitly mentioned incriminating activities like the meeting between Don Trump Jr and Paul Manafort with Russians in Trump Tower. Nevertheless, he did conclude that “no evidence that any Americans – including anyone associated with the Trump campaign – conspired or coordinated with the Russian government.” How does he square those two facts? Barr doesn’t say.
Barr did bring up the fact that Russians were found to have hacked into the emails of Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party. But he let’s Trump off the hook by saying that the Mueller report “did not find any evidence that members of the Trump campaign or anyone associated with the campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its hacking operations.” That, of course, was never alleged by anyone. What Trump and company did was to aid and abet the Russians in disseminating the product of that illegal hacking. All the while denying that it ever occured.
Barr noted that “Wikileaks then made a series of document dumps,” but he absolved Trump of any wrongdoing by stating that “Russian operatives who perpetrated these schemes did not have the cooperation of President Trump or the Trump campaign.” The public evidence to the contrary is undeniable. Trump promoted WikiLeaks’ stolen data over 140 times and said explicitly that “I love WikiLeaks.” Then he later denied this reality by saying that he “knows nothing about WikiLeaks.” Again, that contradiction is another example of his consciousness of guilt.
Barr did address the fact that “the Special Counsel investigated a number of ‘links’ or ‘contacts’ between Trump Campaign officials and individuals connected with the Russian government during the 2016 presidential campaign.” But he’s trivializing what were actually hundreds of contacts by dozens of Trump associates. And he cavalierly dismissed those contacts saying that he “did not find any conspiracy to violate U.S. law.” Well, then what else would he call it?
Barr’s “bottom line” was that the report concluded that “the Russian government sponsored efforts to illegally interfere with the 2016 presidential election but did not find that the Trump campaign or other Americans colluded in those schemes.” But what he isn’t denying is that Trump and his campaign abetted those schemes by promoting their narratives while pretending they didn’t exist.
Additionally, Barr cleared Trump of obstruction of justice by asserting that there was “not sufficient to establish that the President committed an obstruction-of-justice offense.” That’s Barr’s conclusion, not Mueller’s. And it ignores all of the evidence to the contrary, including Trump’s innumerable lies to cover up his activities and even his television confession that he fired FBI director James Comey because of “the Russia thing.”
Proof of Barr’s bias was evident in his comments that Trump “was frustrated and angered by a sincere belief that the investigation was undermining his presidency.” How does Barr know that Trump was frustrated and angry? He never testified. And as for his having “a sincere belief” that he was the subject of “presidential harassment” (as Trump calls it), that’s a brazenly subjective view that reveals prejudice on Barr’s part.
What’s more, Barr claimed that “the White House fully cooperated with the Special Counsel’s investigation [and therefore had no] corrupt intent to obstruct the investigation.” It’s absurd to say that someone who refused to be interviewed had fully cooperated. And Trump’s corrupt intent was evident nearly everyday in his tweets that maligned Mueller and his team as virtual traitors who were acting with purposeful deceit to stage a coup against Trump. Additionally, it’s impossible to ignore Trump’s witness tampering with both threats and the dangling of possible pardons.
This release of the redacted Mueller report, and Barr’s obsequious presentation of his deceitful version of facts, produces more questions than it answers. And the fact that Trump required this improper defense by the Attorney General just makes him look more guilty. There are still some sixteen other investigations of Trump in progress that encompass potential crimes related to his campaign, his inauguration, his businesses, his sexual affairs and assaults, and his presidency. So if Trump thinks this is “Game Over” as he tweeted following Barr’s press conference, he is not only wrong, he’s downright delusional.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
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