The House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the politicization of the Justice Department by Attorney General William Barr on Wednesday. The hearing saw testimonies from Aaron Zelinsky a former prosecutor for the US Attorney’s office in Baltimore, Donald Ayer, a former Deputy Attorney General, Michael Muskasey, former Bush Attorney General and a longtime associate of Rudy Giuliani, and John Elias, a senior official in the DOJ’s antitrust division and two other senior officials. The hearing, meant to explore the validity of accusations that Barr was abusing his power (which, I mean, come on) quickly devolved into shenanigans.
Said shenanigans kicked off immediately with Donald Ayer reading his opening statement in which he stated his belief that Barr “poses the greatest threat in my lifetime to our rule of law and to public trust in it,” and “to advance his own lifelong conviction that the president should hold virtually autocratic powers.” Louie Gohmert, began to tap loudly on a table in front of him as the witness went over his five minute time limit.
The tapping got so loud that Rep. Hank Johnson asked Chairman Nadler to have the sergeant at arms restrain Gohmert so he could hear the testimony. To which Gohmert responded:
“Yeah, well he’s way beyond his time,” Gohmert responded. “And if there are no rules about when people can talk, there are no rules about when you can make noise.”
I’m proud to report that I have long believed that Louie Gohmert is the dumbest congressman. https://t.co/LvGtu51Q00
— Molly Jong-Fast🏡 (@MollyJongFast) June 24, 2020
Other Republicans would join in on this nonsense. Aaron Zelinky testified that his team was pressured to change the recommended sentencing for Roger Stone, which included ZERO years. They had been told they would be fired if they did not. The judge would ultimately settle on three years. During this testimony, Mike Johnson of Louisiana decided it was cool and good to go after Zelinsky for speaking remotely at the recommendation of his family pediatrician. He’s a new father you see. Extremely good and classy.
Ultimately, these tactics were helpful for the GOP as the Democrats seemed to be unable to pull any more new information out of the witnesses. Nevertheless, Barr has agreed to appear before the Committee on July 26th, and calls for Barr’s removal from office have only increased. Barr may be the most dangerous in Trump’s Legion of Doom. His philosophy of an utterly unaccountable autocratic Executive is truly monstrous. And with an utterly obsequious GOP-controlled Senate and nitwit gremlins Gohmert and Johnson in the House to monkey around with hearings, 200 lifetime appointed federal judges picked from the dredges of the Heritage Foundation, the DOJ is one of the last bulwarks against this corruption in any official sense.
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