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OA245: More on Barr and the Shutdown
Today's episode covers the William Barr confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee to become the next Attorney General, as well as the ongoing legal battles regarding Trump’s shutdown of the government. We begin with Barr, who’s proven to be a complex individual. How did he fare in his testimony before the Senate? Are there reasons for optimism? Is his notorious memorandum (which we covered in Episode 237) not really that bad? The answers… are all over the map, and will certainly surprise you. Then, we discuss the ongoing shutdown, which looks to prove Andrew Wrong by not ending tomorrow. What are the legal implications? How are they going to be resolved? Is there any hope, either politically or legally? Listen and find out! Finally, it's time for Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #110 which involves a dentist being sued for malpractice and product liability. As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE! Appearances Andrew was just a guest on Episode 138 of the Naked Mormonism podcast. Give it a listen! And if you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Show Notes & Links 1. Kamala Harris' statements regarding her opposition to Barr's nomination.2. Former Justice Department official of the George H.W. Bush administration Zachary Terwiliger and the speculation that he will once again be Barr's deputy. 3. Barr’s concerning views on executive power and reasons he has drawn so much criticism. 4. We discuss our past Episode OA 237: Lowering the Barr (Memo) 5. Jonathan Turley, GWU Law professor and gadfly, arguing about Barr 7. Jack Goldsmith, HLS professor, has written a response. “A Qualified Defense of the Barr Memo: Part I” 8. The 1995 OLC memo: Application of 28 U.S.C. § 458 to Presidential Appointments of Federal Judges 9. 28 U.S.C. § 458: Relative of Justice or Judge Ineligible to Appointment10. Marist polling data on the Shutdown 11. NTEU v. Mulvaney 12. Barr's written testimony Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law Follow us on Twitter: @Openargs Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/openargs/ Don't forget the OA Facebook Community! For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki And email us at email@example.com
Aired 6 d ago 17:30
Senators Push Trump's Attorney General Pick On Impartiality
Support for NPR and the following message come from WalMart to help tackle the opioid crisis. Walmart is limiting certain non chronic prescriptions to a seven day supply and requiring e prescriptions for controlled substances by twenty twenty more at WalMart dot com slash prevention. I I'm Bella an I'm Lindy we are currently sitting in AP gov. Waiting for classes star while pondering whether the shutdown will ever end this podcast is accorded at five forty nine PM on Tuesday, January fifteenth things may have changed by the time. You hear this? Okay. Here's the show. Hey there. It is the NPR politics podcast today. William bar, President Trump's nominee for attorney general was grilled about what he would do with the Russia investigation. I am Danielle Kurtz leave and political reporter. I'm Carrie Johnson. I cover the Justice department, and I'm Ryan Lucas, I also cover the Justice department. Okay. So to set this up a quick previously on segment bar is set to replace acting attorney general Matt Whitaker who himself replaced. Former attorney general Jeff Sessions Trump as you guys might remember had some issues with sessions if I'm recalling correctly seemed to remember a little bit of criticism was a tweet or two I don't know enter Bill bar he wants to be sessions replacement. So what concerns did bar have to address even get through? This hearing Democrats had a number of issues that they wanted to go through with him, including his views on executive power on immigration, civil rights as tough on crime views, but the one issue that. It really was looming over all of this were a comments that he's made about special counsel, Robert Muller's Russia investigation, and in particular in nineteen page memo that he wrote which questioned possible obstruction of Justice investigation that that Muller's conducting. So those were the issues that really Democrats wanted to dig in on and and they did. So let's walk through the big moments to see how well he addressed those questions. So Carrie, let's start with you. What is the big moment or a big moment that really stood out today law? Speaking of criticism of the former attorney general Jeff Sessions, the present never got over Jeff Sessions decision to recuse himself from oversight of this Russia investigation, which became the special counsel program. Right. And so the big question. One of the big questions was we'll Bill Barak himself. Bill bar had said some things that were not so nice and op EDS in to reporters things like maybe questioning the composition of Robert Muller's team of prosecutors and FBI agents, maybe questioning why the Justice department didn't do more to investigate Hillary Clinton in the Clinton. Foundation in that memo that Ryan talked about and people like Dianne Feinstein, the top democrat on this committee had some questions about whether bar might step aside from oversight. Will you commit to making any report Muller produces at the conclusion of his investigation available to congress and to the public as I said in my statement, I am going to make as much information available as I can consistent with the rules and regulations. Okay. So what happened here is that Senator Feinstein was pressing bar about whether he'd recuse he said, I will seek advice from ethics officials, but I'm going to go my own way and make my own decision. And she more importantly was asking a Bill bar about what he would make public when Robert Moore's finally done, of course, the regulations allow for Muller or tell molar to file some kind of wrap up with the attorney general who soon will likely be Bill bar and the big question is members of congress in the pub. Wanna see with that is bar basically said I believe in transparency, but this is going to be my report, I am the decider here. And I am not giving up my thority in this confirmation hearing. He went so far as to say an pretty tough exchange with maisy Hirono of Hawaii. Basically, I'm not going to surrender. Maya thority is the attorney general in order to get this job in the first place. Okay. So Ryan, let's move to you. What was your moment? What's something that really stuck out to you? A lot of what stuck out to me was how Bill bar managed to Perry. A lot of the requests that Democrats made the demands for pledges that they were looking for Bill bar is a longtime lawyer he was served as a turning general from nineteen ninety one to nineteen Ninety-three in the George H W Bush administration. This is not his first rodeo he has done this before and he was very skillful thought at attempting to push back on democratic request. And there are a number of exchanges in which he does that. And here's one with. Democratic Senator Chris coons? Do you want special counsel Muller to shield? No one and prosecute the case, regardless of who is affected oh on special counsel Muller to discharge his responsibilities as a federal prosecutor and exercise judgment that he's expected to exercise under the rules. So decode that what is he sidestepping? And what isn't isn't he saying there? Well, that was a question that I interpreted as coons trying to bait him into saying something specific about going after President Trump if the evidence is there and bars essentially saying we're just gonna play by the rules. So one more big question looming over all of this was executive power in his views on this. And we saw Minnesota democratic Senator Amy klobuchar are really trying to nail him down with some questions surrounding this. You also said that a president or any person convincing a witness to change testimony would be obstruction. Is that? Right. Yes. Okay. And on page two you said that president deliberately impair. Being the integrity or availability of evidence would be an instruction. Is that correct? Yes. Okay. And so what if a president told the witness not to cooperate with an investigation or hinted at a pardon? I I'd have to know this specific I'd have to know the specific and you wrote on page one that if a president knowingly destroys our altars evidence that would be obstruction. Okay. So what if a president drafted misleading statement to conceal the purpose of a meeting with that be obstruction? You know? I'd have to know the I'd have to know the specifics. Okay. So this is an example of. Ripped from the headlines and news stories about the president of the United States and trying to beat the nominee about the head and face with them. Right. Yeah. And bar basically said I'd have to have more specifics. But we know that President Trump in his lawyers have talked about with a witnesses and subjects of this investigation possible pardons, President Trump himself said in front of a whole bunch of reporters and TV cameras not so long ago that pardons are not off the table for a whole bunch of people, including his former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and maybe Michael Flynn is former national security adviser one person unlikely to get a pardon is his former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, whom President Trump has called weak and rat but bar basically said the president has the power to pardon people. But if he does it for a really bad purpose or a as a way to get people to lie or not incriminate him. There would be a problem. That problem. No Barr says would likely be a constitutional problem in impeachment problem, not a legal problem in indictment problem. Okay. So guys a big thing looming over this. We've covered a lot of it is the Russia investigation. What did we learn today if anything that's new here mobile bar didn't go out of his way to criticize the president or take issue with president? But he did say some nice things about people the president doesn't lake very much. He said he understands Jeff Sessions was probably right to recuse himself. Bill Barr says he is a very high opinion of the deputy attorney general rod Rosenstein, impo bar also says he has no reason to doubt the idea that the Russians attempted to interfere in the two thousand sixteen election, and he doesn't believe that. Bob Muller has been conducting a witch hunt. And as you know, Bob Mueller has been the guy's friend for thirty years. So he's probably not gonna fire him, right? There was one other thing that isn't directly. Well, it is directly related to the Russia in investigation. And this is a meeting that Barr had with the president at the White House in. June of two thousand seventeen that we were unaware of before and bar told the story of how he was called in by the ambassador to Israel. It was largely about possibly joining the president's personal legal team bar said, ultimately he didn't want to do that. It was. So he was a little more colorful with his legs as turn a free or celebrating the twenty years of the sopranos. I had to get the meat grinder in their favor. So what he also said was a lot of the conversation revolved around Bob Muller and bar was asked what he thought of Muller about Muller and bars. Centrally said he's a straight shooter and he should be treated as such. He gave the president has number. He said he didn't hear back from him at any point in time until it came to discuss the attorney general's position. So that was a meeting that we hadn't heard before certainly something that is going to raise questions in the minds of Democrats about possibly improper conduct or adds to their belief that there should be reason for him to recuse. But for Republicans right now, there's enough support there appears to be enough support at least for bar that this confirmation is likely going to happen. Okay. With that we're gonna take a quick break. And we'll be right back support for this podcast. And the following message come from mizzen and main mizzen and main dress shirts are made with performance fabrics designed. To look great all day with minimal maintenance, their moisture wyking, wrinkle resistant and machine washable. So they don't require ironing or dry cleaning. Check out their gift guides for the guy on your list. Who is always on the move heads visited, Maine dot com. Mizzen and main look great longer use code NPR at checkout to receive ten dollars off your dress shirt. How do we perceive our experience as humans who are we today? And who could we be tomorrow guy Roz on the radio? Our we go on a journey through the big ideas that animate our world each week. It's the Ted radio hour from NPR and we're back. Okay. Guys. We talked about what you thought were key moments. But this is the NPR politics podcast. And we do have to talk about the politics of all this potential twenty twenty candidates who are on the committee were trying to flex their muscles. And one of them was comma Harris, you just reviewed in yell. I mean, what do you think she's trying to do here? I mean, what she's trying to do is what she's trying to do in her book, which is sort of show. I am a prosecutor. I m tough I have bona fides here. Let me show you, and she, you know, also like Amy klobuchar herself a former prosecutor both really kind of went at Bill bar today. And with these very rapid fire questions where it was clear. They started asking a very simple question. But the questions very clearly led to a very particular place. And actually here is commonly Harris with her exchange with him over recusals. They're different. They're different kinds of recusals summer mandated, for example, if you have a financial interest, but there are others that are judgment calls. And that's imagine. It's the judgment call and the judgment by the career ethics officials in the agency are that you recuse yourself. What scenario would you not follow their recommendation if I disagreed with it, and what would the basis of that disagreement bay? I came to a different judgment on what basis the facts such as. Such as whatever facts are relevant to the recusals. What do you imagine the facts would be that are relevant to the recusal? They could be innumerable. It's like she's trying to nail jello to a wall or something. I I will say that we're times when bar was more skillful and times when he was less skillful. I thought that in this exchange Harris and hurt pedigree. As attorney came out. She has shown the ability to kind of penned a witness down in past hearings on the Senate intelligence committee as well as the judiciary committee. And I think that she showed a bit of that skill today. All right. So leaving aside potential twenty twenty contenders trying to show off and get at whatever they were trying to get at and leaving aside. Russia there is a lot of other stuff in question today. A lot of other important topics came up immigration the wall marijuana what stuck out to you guys is really important. He had a lengthy exchange with Senator Cory Booker, a democrat from New Jersey and doubt bars last time in the DOJ, which was the early nineteen nineties when bar said, basically, I hate put it this way. But that there was blood industry. Meets the violent crime rate was very high level of homicides were very high and Bill bar was like such a tough on drugs tough on crime prosecutor that he in one case came out basically in favor of capital punishment for drug offender, which is now considered to be somewhat outside the mainstream. Right. And Cory Booker was trying to impress on Bill bar what it felt like to be young men of color in these communities and trying to get Barda understand basically that the Justice system is often viewed as a disproportionately punitive on young men of color in bar didn't give a whole lot of ground. He said he did basically support this new criminal Justice all law the first step back, but he in Booker agreed to disagree, and maybe talk about it some more. He did spend a lot of time defending views that he had in in the early nineties, and in drawing a contrast and saying that that was very different time and his views then were not outside of the mainstream. And things may have changed since then and he's willing to consider those changes. But as you also noted a lot of times, he did not give much ground. He didn't give much ground. He basically said that he agreed with a lot of the Jeff Sessions approach to civil rights, which I know dismayed. Civil rights advocates in the room who were sending me Email messages about it. I do not expect a lot of additional police oversight and system wide investigations of police departments under attorney general Bill bar if he's confirmed Bill bar also, basically said, listen, I may not love the status quo when it comes to federal the federal approach to marijuana, but the current regime were many states are just doing what they wanna do breeds disrespect for the law. That was the real Bill bar coming out right there. He is a conservative. And he does not believe that a federal law should be disrespected basically called on congress to to make a change to basically either get rid of marijuana as regular. Hated under the controlled substances act very tightly or regulated all the way, but he said the current regime in the current federal poached marijuana is not gonna work. Bart also showed kind of his hardline credentials on immigration policy. Talked about supporting the idea of building a barrier along the southern border to keep out drugs to keep out immigrants. He says immigration reform is long overdue, but he also talked about sanctuary cities and talking about how they hurt the ability to protect the public, and those are definitely policies that we heard a lot of from Jeff Sessions. All right. So simple question is he going to be confirmed? The math is firmly on bar side and getting confirmed Republicans hold a fifty three forty seven edge in the Senate. There haven't been any cracks in Republican support for him. So far he may pick up some Democrats as well. So at this point, barring a disaster in some of the written follow up comments said he still has to make he looks like he'll likely get confirmed. Yes. One other big question, I'm curious about. And I think a lot of people are curious about is how tied would Barbie to the particular. Whims of the president who really tried to for example, pressure Jeff Sessions and really got after Jeff Sessions when he didn't do what he wanted. I mean, what do what did we learn today about that Bill are made it clear that he was coming back to the Justice department. If that's in fact, what happens after twenty seven years with some reluctance, he was supposed to ride off into the sunset with his wife and enjoy his children, and grandchildren and kind of chill out in front of his have asked me like does this guy need his head examined. Why is he entering this department at this time in history in Bill was asked that question. And here's what he had to say about it. If you take this job, you have to be ready to make decisions and spend all your political capital and have no future because you have to do you have to have that freedom of action, and I feel I'm gonna position in life. Where I can do the right thing and not really care about the consequences. Listen, this guy is sixty eight years old if he has to quit hill quit, and he's not gonna worry about he's just gonna leave. And that may be what the Justice department needs at this moment in time the sort of come at me answer. Exactly. All right. Well, that's a wrap for today. But there's news literally every five seconds. So there's no doubt that we'll be back very soon until then had to NPR dot org slash politics newsletter. To subscribe to our weekly roundup of our best online news and analysis. I'm Danielle Kurtz, leave and political reporter. I'm Carrie Johnson. I cover the Justice department that I'm Ryan Lucas. I also covered. Lucas I also cover the Justice department and thank you for listening to the NPR politics podcasts.
NPR Politics Podcast
Aired 6 d ago 23:40
Trump and a New Attorney General
The from the New York Times, I'm Michael Barr. This is the day. The Senate begins confirmation hearings for President Trump's latest choice of attorney general William what will it mean for Trump and the special counsel to finally have an attorney general who is actually in charge of the Russia investigation. It's Tuesday January fifteenth. Key. Lena this morning. The Senate will begin confirmation hearings on the president's latest attorney general William bar before we get to him. How did we get to this point in March twenty seventeen Jeff Sessions decided to recuse himself from any matters related to the election? He'd worked on the Trump campaign. There've been disclosures that he may have had conversations with the Russian ambassador they hadn't previously disclosed. And so suddenly it became apparent that? He could not be involved in any matters related to the investigation, of course, at the same time. We have a firestorm brewing between the president and Jim Komi, which leads the firing of Jim Komi. Katie Benner covers the Justice department for the times. So after that happened inside the Justice department was incredibly chaotic and rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general decided to step in and create a special counsel a special counsel with specifically look at the election. So now, you have a situation where there's a huge investigation into the president the president's handpicked attorney general powerless to help him. And to be on his side, which he believes is the role of the attorney general that's up for debate. And suddenly all of the anger of the president is trained on both the Justice department and Jeff Sessions. We have an attorney general on his appointed in the attorney general Jeff Sessions should've never let it happen. He should've never recused themselves extremely unfair. And that's stay mile board to depress disappointed in my Justice department because of this ridiculous witch-hunt I have said I'm going to stay away from the Justice department until it's completed just look at what is now being exposed in our department of Justice and the FBI look at what's going on. Look what's going the attorney general meta terrible mistake. When he did this, and when he recused himself, or he should have certainly let us know if he was going to recuse himself, and we would have used a put a different attorney general he wants out of the department, but it feels like there's no good time to do it. What after Jeff Sessions yesterday. Now, he's done this in fits and starts. This is another level. I don't have an attorney general. It does not get any more clear than Rosen again has decided to make clear Jeff Sessions. I wish you would go away very angry and wants to fire Jeff Sessions, but Cain right now. Why is he still there? Republicans on Capitol Hill have been pleading with the president not to fire Jeff Sessions, especially ahead of the midterm elections there fear, of course, is that it was put the majority of Republicans in jeopardy ahead of the midterms eventually, the midterm elections. Come and go, it's no longer a political problem for him and literally the day after the election session. So general Jeff Sessions has now resigned at the request of the president takes effect. Immediately the president never forgiving him for recusing himself in the Russia investigation. And what did the firing of sessions after the mid terms mean for the man who has been overseeing the Russia investigation day-to-day, the deputy attorney general rod Rosenstein, well, so it's interesting because normally when the attorney general leaves the deputy attorney general who is rod Rosenstein would take that job. See what sink that would mean that the men has been overseeing the Russia investigation as the acting attorney general would just become the acting attorney general for the whole building and nothing would really change. However, that's not what happens. The president just tweeted, quote, we are pleased to announce that Matthew g Whitaker chief of staff to attorney general Jeff Sessions at the department of Justice will become our new acting attorney general of the United States he will serve our country. Well, we thank attorney general Jeff Sessions for his service and wish him well. Exclamation points. A permanent replacement will be nominated at a later date. The prince said Matt would occur who's been Jeff such as chief of staff was very friendly with Donald Trump who Donald Trump really likes and. Trust becomes the acting attorney. General Matthew Whitaker has been on the president succession list since at least late September. A lot of people who watch the news every night saying we never heard of Whitaker. And now, he's the guy. I mean, the guy who is now the acting attorney general it's like a staffer, and you know, that's unusual. We've not seen that before. I mean, this is the attorney general of the United States. The big worry was that. Now that Matt Whitaker the attorney general could technically oversee the Russian investigation. He would do something to impede it as a favor to Donald Trump. No, he who roses thing should have been the one to take over. That's the point Fred he hires Whitaker who is. Ken met Whitaker. Do new acting attorney general end Muller investigation on top of that Whitaker's. Resume was not traditional for the post of attorney general of the US the president named this lackey. Whitaker. He had been US attorney Iowa, but he'd also been involved in shady business dealings in a company that was fined by the US government for being fraudulent and for bilking investors and customers out of lots of money simple. That I think is going to really not only protect people from typical injuries that you get from using a straight razor blade. On YouTube videos, trying to sell hot technology. It's going to help people that ability shoes get in and use their hot tub and say may keep involved in daycare centers and other projects that didn't take off. And it's unclear what he actually did in his own law firm. He didn't seem to take on a lot of big case and met Whitaker had spent quite a bit of time on CNN as a political commentator scenario where Jeff Sessions is replaced it with a recess appointment, and that attorney general doesn't fire Bob Muller. But he just reduces the budget so low that his his investigation grinds to absolute almost an hall while that might have appealed to Donald Trump. It certainly alarmed Democrats the appointment of Mr. Whittaker should concern every American democrat Republican liberal conservative who believes in rule of law and Justice if he stays there he will create a constitutional crisis by inhibiting Muller or firing Muller. So congress has to act has to act the Democrats want to know is math. Whitaker. Donald Trump's person who was going to interfere in the investigation and was firing Jeff Sessions and installing that Whitaker act of structure of Justice, and they want to investigate this and now because of the election results, they have the power, and they can whose actions food clear pattern of interference. And attempting of sabotage of the special counsel's investigation. We think it's very important that the president he put on notice that he is not above the law and the American people will not tolerate his trying to act like a tyrant in a monarch, not not like a president happened inside of the building people very cognizant of all the questions around Whitaker whether or not he should recuse himself from the Russia investigation. And so inside of the Justice department ethics officials began a process of determining whether or not he should recuse himself from that probe. And what do they ultimately find soccer six weeks? The ethics officials said out of bonus a caution. We really think that there is an appearance of conflict that would make us. Us think that it'd be a good idea to recuse. But at the end of the day, they didn't say that he had to recuse. They said it was up to him. But that they would recommend that he recused. And what did he do? Ultimately, he knowing that the decision was his decided not to accuse. So the fact that would occur didn't recuse himself from the Russia Vesa Gatien means that he technically would have the final say over the mother desiccation if he wore Whittaker to stay in this job, which means, and this would be Democrats biggest fears that he could squash. The final report from Vermonter. Sure. That's their biggest fear that fear though, was laid because an early December Donald Trump having noticed. There was quite a furor over mount would occur came out and said, I have found my new attorney general. Or the United States journey general. And it will be William bar, the riffing band aid, terrific person, brilliant, man. And who is we bar? William bar is a classic Republican next. It's coverage today. Senate Judiciary committee hearing on the nomination of William bar, President Bush's choice to be the nation's new attorney general he was the attorney general under George H W Bush and was known at that time as the boy AG he was so young. He was in his early. Forty bar is forty one years of age. She worked for the Central Intelligence Agency and the DC circuit court of appeals before joining with President Reagan's transition team, and he came up through the Justice department. He had been the head of the office of legal counsel. He'd been the deputy attorney general, and then he was attorney general United States. I'm honored that the president has selected me for the position of Torney. General I believe I am in a good position to provide leadership to the department of Justice. So a highly credential Republican legal figure in the traditional mold of the attorney general and not just highly credentialed. He has also revered especially amongst conservative legal circles for being such a sharp legal mind. The thing we being the attorney general as you are a political appointee. Or the face of the department. You're kind of famous at least you're DC famous. But you do not have to be the best lawyer in the world William bar on the other hand. Some would argue is one of the best lawyers in the world, but William bar is a really low key guy. If you think about the two years when he was attorney general there were huge cases that came before the Justice department, the Rodney King riots, the Talladega prisoner pricing and the shooting at Ruby Ridge. We remember all those things so well, but we don't remember the name William bar, and I think that speaks to the way that he handled those cases he consulted with his staff. He relied heavily on the people in the solicitor general's office now office of legal counsel, and then he took their guidance and he decided to. Do what the Terminator to do? He wasn't really public face Agee's coming go. And if you confirm me, I would like the conclusion of my tenure habit said that I held the law and that I left the department of Justice and more effective stronger a better institution. So it sounds like he is a very safe and solid choice. And I wonder if that was the point the president specifically chose someone who was so obviously qualified and credentialed. Because of the perception at least by some especially Democrats that Matt Whitaker was a partisan and not nearly as qualified. Absolutely. I think they both inside the Justice department and inside the White House people were incredibly relieved to have somebody finally hopefully act as a Torney general who would bring to an end this era of complete chaos that had engulfed the Justice department and relationship with the president. But just a week later things shifted again. How well we saw that. William Barr had written a memo and sent it over to the Justice department saying that he had real concerns about Robert Muller's investigation in a memo from this past summer Bill bar called the obstruction inquiry quote, fatally misconceived with potentially disastrous implications for the presidency saying Trump's firing a former FBI director James Comey was within the power of the president. He doesn't think that it's the case that the president obstructed Justice by firing essentially his employees somebody who has every right to fighter the memo's speaking as a former attorney general under president, George H W Bush sources tell CNN bar disgust them with the president pointing out it could be a sticking point for his confirmation has Justice department employees. They are all attorneys, they are incredibly opinionated people. But writing a very very long extremely detailed argued memo about aspects of an investigation of which he admits in the memo, he doesn't know he doesn't understand. And he has no d. Tales about that is unusual. So that seems like a pretty big red flag at this moment. When one of as you said, the biggest pieces of the more of us equation is investigating whether the president obstructed Justice. So how all these constituencies who are so nervous about who. The next attorney general will be and what they will do with Russia 's Asian how did they respond? They immediately start calling for an explanation. They wanna know why Barr wrote the memo, and they want to know what? Bars thoughts on the Miller investigation aren't today. Democrats wanted to hear much more than what he was saying they were not satisfied that point the fact that as a citizen he filed this nineteen page memo. I don't have citizens. I'd do that they might you know, send me nineteen characters and at tweet about an issue, but he filed suddenly nineteen paid issue like a tryout for this job. But you have some real issues here that we're going to have to question him about under oath share mini, Mr. bars of thoughts about the consequences. -struction Justice for personnel decisions. But having said that he'll need to defend his reasoning. William bar was sending freelance memos to the Trump administration making a case to undercut the Muller investigation. So the deep concern will be is this just a preface to either undercutting the investigation or trying to keep the results of hidden from the American. Well, let's talk about how does he respond Sabar goes to the hill. And he starts the work of calming people down William bar meeting with lawmakers on Capitol Hill last week William bar speaking with democratic and Republican senators, including Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell William Barr met with Republican Senator Lindsey Graham earlier, South Carolina lawmaker told reporters bar as agreed to allow Miller to finish his job. I ask Mr. bar directly. Do you think Mr. molars on a witch? He said, no, he would be fared Preston in the country is whole he said, yes. So today's confirmation hearings bar has basically ROY. On a kind of mini PR campaign to make sure that senators don't think that he will interfere with the Russia investigation. And he's basically saying trust me despite what I have said or written in this memo that I will not touch the Muller message. It has that worked it for now has worked, but we will see what happens during the hearing a lot's going to ride on his performance. He's going to be asked all these same questions again and how he answers and how convincing he is in that setting as going to a lot further and the private meetings. He just had on the hill. You know, what's interesting Katie is that from the start the president has been really at odds with his own department of Justice because of the depth of his resentment over the Russian education. He was furious at his first handpicked attorney general Jeff Sessions because he recused himself from the investigation. And because it was suddenly under the control of a person that he couldn't really influence rod Rosenstein, then he appoints a temporary. Attorney general who immediately comes under a cloud of suspicion and who never really gets a chance to be in charge of the investigation. Now, finally if bar is confirmed, the president will have an attorney general who won't recuse himself and will more or less oversee the Russia probe in the way that the president wants does that mean that the president's relationship with the department of Justice will finally become more civil and productive. I think this is a huge question for bar. He has a big job to do. He needs to both rehabilitate the relationship with the White House, and he needs to improve morale inside of the building which is pretty low after almost two years of constant hacks than the White House one of the things that William bar that people expect including people at the White House is that he will say no to the president. And he will be willing to defy the president William bar is not coming into the job as a former Trump campaign official and he's not coming into the job as one of the president's first. And earliest and staunchest supporters of sessions did he is coming into the job largely independent. And so I think there's more of an expectation of independence from him than there was with sessions. So whether or not bar can walk the fine line between doing his job, which sometimes means thing to the president and making sure that that doesn't spill over into this acrimonious relationship again that's going to be really difficult. But I think he's a way better chance of doing it than Jeff Sessions. Did I wonder if at the end of the day having sessions and having Rosenstein in these powerful positions, which is about to end if having them as kind of foils and punching bags was really useful for the president because it allowed him to cast doubt on the Russia investigation. And frankly any investigation he didn't like the Justice department overtook does that mean that having someone like bar is that gonna make it harder for the president to a? Attack these investigations and try to on their mind them. I don't think that the president sees a world in which just because he chose somebody for job. He can't attack them. There's nothing in the last two years of his presidency to suggest that so even though he's nominated William bar, and he wants to become the attorney general he also nominated sessions he also nominated Rosenstein and was happy when it suited him to turn on them. But bars a little bit different. He's already done the job. He's already been attorney general that has a sterling reputation of preserve. I don't anticipate a world in which he will not push back and try to defend the department and the people who work there when the president does a pack. I wonder though, if that's a recipe for a very short lived attorney general ship someone who sees his role as protecting the department and standing up to the president. I think it's part of the job of the attorney general and could it mean that he has a very short term in the office. It could that said if you're William bar, you have the sterling reputation, which would you rather do be attorney general for few months and go down in a blaze of glory because you defended the department tough time or say nothing and be considered forever in the history book this somebody who remained silent allowed the president to trample on the department that you wants represented. Thank you very much. Thank you. In his written testimony for today's confirmation hearing William bar pledged to allow the special counsel's office to finish its investigation and said it is quote, very important that the public be informed of the investigations results. The country needs a credible. Resolution of these issues are if confirmed I will not permit partisan politics personal interests or any other improper consideration to interfere with this or any other investigation bars. Testimony before the Senate is scheduled for nine thirty this morning. The daily supported by twenty three and me got health goals on your to do list for twenty nineteen make more personalized resolutions with insights from twenty three me's health and ancestry service kit. You can learn about your health traits ancestry and more with over ninety personalized genetic reports. Discover the connection between your DNA in your sleep movement, caffeine consumption, muscle composition and much more this year before you make generic resolution meet your jeans and make genetic resolution or your today at twenty three meter com slash daily. Here's what else you need to on Monday. President Trump or Jek did a proposal made by close Republican ally Senator Lindsey Graham to reopen the government temporarily to negotiate funding for a border wall before resorting to an emergency declaration that would allow them to start building the wall without Congress's consent. I would urge him to open up the government for short period of time like three weeks before he pulls the plug. Safeway can get a deal if we can at the end of three weeks all bets are off. See if he can do it by himself through the emergency powers. That's my recommendation asked about the proposal on the White House lawn. Trump said it was insufficient. Lindsay made. But I did I did reject it. I I'm not interested. I want to get it. Some don't wanna just delay. I wanna get it with known ago. She underway. The shutdown is now in its twenty four th day. And. In the richest country in the world. In the richest state in the country. In a state as blue as it can be and in a city rife with millionaires where teachers have to go on strike to get the basics for our students in Los Angeles on Monday, more than thirty thousand public schoolteachers began a lever strike over demands for higher pay smaller classes, and the need for more supports them. The strike is the latest case of teachers across the country walking off the job to protest working conditions last year teachers mounted large-scale strikes in six other states from West Virginia, Colorado, Los Angeles, said it's nine hundred public schools will remain open throughout the strike staffed by substitute teachers. But many parents have said they will keep their children out of school rather than making them cross a picket line to attend class. That's is for the daily. I'm Michael Bobo ceiling. The daily supported by shares Bill the low cost portfolio that invest in companies with favourable environmental social governance, practices, investment matters. Most to you, I share sustainable court ETF's. Learn more, I share dot com slash sustainable. Visit. I shares dot com to view prospectus, which includes investment objectives risks fees expenses. 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