Attorney General William Barr was repeatedly berated during his hearing in front of the Democrat-controlled House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday with Democratic members of the committee repeatedly cutting him off and not allowing him to answer questions.
The attacks on Barr were so hostile that even CNN made note of it, writing that that “Democrats were out for blood.”
“Democrats repeatedly cut off Barr’s responses, accused him of being wrong or lying and made clear they weren’t interested in the explanations he was offering,” CNN reported. “Barr wasn’t allowed extra time at the end of each lawmaker’s five minutes to respond to questions that witnesses typically receive — forcing Republicans to use their time to let Barr push back on the Democratic accusations.”
During the hearing, Barr specifically called out the Democratic Party for widely failing to condemn violent extremists attacking a federal courthouse in Portland amid a series of riots that have lasted over 60 consecutive days. Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) even claimed at the start of the week that the violence in Portland was “a myth.”
“What makes me concerned for the country is, this is the first time in my memory that the leaders of one of our great two political parties, the Democratic Party, are not coming out and condemning mob violence and the attack on federal courts,” Barr said. “Why can’t we just say: ‘Violence against federal courts has to stop?’ Could we hear something like that?”
AG Barr: “What makes me concerned for the country…the leaders of one of our great two political parties, the Democratic Party, are not coming out and condemning mob violence and the attack on federal courts"https://t.co/1114EbnH2j pic.twitter.com/ngQ8iAp5Ww
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) July 28, 2020
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) sought to use words from progressive religious figures to attack Barr over the administration using law enforcement to clear out violent rioters from a church across the street from the White House.
“Are you aware that the rector of the church, that the Episcopal archbishop of Washington, and the presiding bishop of the Episcopal church nationally, along with the Catholic bishop of the archdioceses of Washington all denounced this police assault on the civil rights and civil liberties of the people?” Raskin snapped.
“Did they do that before or after the fire was put out?” Barr asked, referencing a fire that was set at the church during the riots that law enforcement said was intentionally set.
"Did they do that before or after the fire was put out?" pic.twitter.com/qz1aUPjzJW
— Elizabeth Harrington (@LizRNC) July 28, 2020
Barr previously reported during an interview with CBS News that the so-called “peaceful protests” in Lafayette Park were not peaceful and said, “That’s one of the big lies that the media seems to be perpetuating at this point.”
“The officers were pummeled with bricks. Crowbars were used to pry up the pavers at the park and they were hurled at police. There were fires set in not only St. John’s Church, but a historic building at Lafayette was burned down,” Barr said during the interview. “Here’s what the media is missing. This was not an operation to respond to that particular crowd. It was an operation to move the perimeter one block.”
“I didn’t see any video being played on the media of what was happening Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. All I heard was comments about how peaceful the protesters were,” Barr added. “I didn’t hear about the fact that there were 150 law enforcement officers injured and many taken to the hospital with concussions. So it wasn’t a peaceful protest. We had to get control over Lafayette Park, and we had to do it as soon as we were able to do that.”
Grabien News founder Tom Elliott created a video showing just a few of the times that Democrats cut off Barr as he began to answer questions asked by the Democrat members of the committee.
Dems Demand AG Barr Testify, But Not Actually Talk pic.twitter.com/NdE7RR3LCS
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) July 28, 2020
White House social media director Dan Scavino tweeted out a video that inter-cut a video of Barr playing the bagpipe with moments during the hearing in which he landed zingers on the Democrat members of the committee.
Highlights from the video include:
REP. JAMIE RASKIN (D-MD): Are you aware that the rector of the church, that the Episcopal archbishop of Washington, and the presiding bishop of the Episcopal church nationally, along with the Catholic bishop of the archdioceses of Washington all denounced this police assault on the civil rights and civil liberties of the people?
ATTORNEY GENERAL WILLIAM BARR: Did they do that before or after the fire was put out?
REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D-CA): So how can you sit here and tell us, ‘Why should I investigate the President of the United States’ if you’re not even aware of the facts concerning the president using the pardon or commutation power to swap asylum for the witness?
BARR: Because we require a reliable predicate before we open a criminal investigation.
[Another member interrupts]
BARR: This is a hearing. I thought I was the one that was supposed to be heard.
BARR TO CHAIRMAN JERRY NADLER: I waited 45, an hour for you this morning. I haven’t had lunch, I’d like to take a five minute break.
NADLER: Mr. Attorney General, we are almost finished. We’re going to be finished in a few minutes. We can certainly take a break, but, uh…
BARR: You’re a real class act, [Mr. Chairman].
REP. MARY GAY SCANLON (D-PA): But, in fact, you have no evidence that foreign countries can successfully sway our elections with counterfeit ballots, do you?
BARR: No, I don’t. But I have common sense.
REP. DOUG COLLINS (R-GA): …[congressional] body right here would rise up if they decided to go tonight and paint the capitol building?
BARR: This body? I’m not sure.
— Dan Scavino (@DanScavino) July 29, 2020
Another viral moment from the hearing came when Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) scolded Barr, saying, “Attorney General, the time is mine. We’ve waited a long time for you to come here. The time is mine.”
“You’ve waited to talk to me like this?” Barr fired back, noting the disrespectful nature of the hearing. “You didn’t need to wait so long.”
Barr then turned and drank his Starbucks coffee, which became an instant meme online.
Just made this GIF
🐸☕️ #mood pic.twitter.com/MQ0W6zB9Gr
— Courtney 🇺🇸 (@hollandcourtney) July 29, 2020