The Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Adam Schiff published a letter written to Attorney General Bill Barr regarding the Department of Justice’s involvement in the whistleblower complaint. Schiff characterized the intervention as “improper and contrary to both a clear, categorical statutory directive and longstanding IC whistleblowing practices” before demanding the formal legal opinion, allegedly from the Office of Legal Counsel related to the complaint.
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Judge Randolph Moss of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia vacated on Friday a presidential proclamation barring people who enter the country outside ports of entry from seeking asylum. The policy had been temporarily enjoined by a judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Northern California. The ruling is available here and below.
Attorney General William Barr delivered a keynote address at the International Conference on Cyber Security. The speech can be read here.
A depressing reflection on the state of norms and institutions.
President Trump has conferred on Attorney General Bill Barr an unprecedented power over the intelligence community. The delegation will only increase public mistrust toward the Justice Department.
The special counsel’s take on whether obstruction of justice can apply to presidential actions facially within Article II authority is consistent with the text, history, structure and principles of the Constitution, as well as the Supreme Court’s case law on the subject.
While certain aspects of Attorney General Bill Barr’s behavior could be defensible if they stood alone, taken as a whole his course of conduct shows that Barr is defending not merely the presidency, but this particular president.
The House Judiciary Committee will consider a contempt citation against Attorney General Bill Barr on Wednesday, May 8. The citation involves Barr's failure to comply with the committee's subpoena for an unredacted version of the Mueller report and underlying evidence. The full draft citation resolution is available here and below.
Sometimes Justice Department independence means standing up to the president. And sometimes it means taking unpopular positions in defense of the presidency.