I’ve watched Attorney General William Barr’s ludicrous bit of Kabuki theater, where he pretended to be the attorney general of the United States, rather than Donald Trump’s personal fixer.
If nothing else, we can wipe away any fog over that situation.
Barr stood behind a lectern, before the press and the American people, and completely misrepresented what was included in special counsel Robert Mueller’s report.
In fact, very little Barr said bears a resemblance to the spirit of the report.
As it is, I’m just beginning the journey that is this voluminous report, and I have yet to fully digest what I have read. There’s a lot there, as well as quite a bit of redaction.
There is enough information contained in the report to keep pundits like myself busy for weeks.
As I have yet to digest the full report, I don’t want to dive too deeply into the thick of it, but I’ll take some time to go over bits and pieces of interest.
For now, let’s talk about White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and her storied penchant for lying in service to the throne.
This was a woman brought up by a Baptist minister (Mike Huckabee). You would think that there would be some emphasis on truth in the home.
I guess it didn’t stick.
Out of the mountain of troubling information released on Thursday, is anyone surprised to find that Sanders admitted that she, like so many others associated with this presidency, lied to the press and the American people?
In particular, she lied about former FBI Director James Comey, in order to cover up President Trump’s attempts to obstruct the ongoing Russia probe.
The rhetoric from the White House following Comey’s firing was that he was inept, he had lost the confidence of those FBI agents working under him, and that the department was a mess, as a result.
Meanwhile, rank and file agents, in one instance after another, were refuting those claims.
Comey “was not doing a good job,” Trump said at the time. “Very simply, he was not doing a good job.”
Afterwards, the president admitted to NBC News’ Lester Holt that he fired Comey “because of the Russia thing.”
Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team investigated this particular incident, as well as many others, in the portion of their work that dealt with possible attempts at obstruction.
To that end, they brought in Sanders to further explore her part in pushing the narrative of James Comey as a drain on the FBI.
Did I mention the fact that she’s a liar, working in service to a liar?
Mueller put it in his report.
“Sanders told this Office [of the special counsel] that her reference to hearing from ‘countless members of the FBI’ was a ‘slip of the tongue,’” investigators wrote in the document, which was released with significant redactions by Attorney General William Barr on Thursday.
“She also recalled that her statement in a separate press interview that rank-and-file FBI agents had lost confidence in Comey was a comment she made ‘in the heat of the moment’ that was not founded on anything,” it continued.
Can we talk about the difference between a “slip of the tongue” and a blatant lie?
A slip of the tongue happens when you call your boyfriend by your ex-boyfriend’s name.
A slip of the tongue is when you accidentally blurt out a spoiler alert to your friends about your favorite television show.
What Sanders did was stand before the press and repeat a lie, knowing what she intended to say. It was not rooted in truth, and it was intentional.
She spoke about the mindset of an entire group of people without even speaking to them, because what she was saying served Donald Trump’s agenda.
Now does this mean Trump or those in his administration sought to obstruct the investigation?
No, not specifically, but that she was so ready to lie shows that they realized the truth was potentially damaging, and it opens the door for so much else.
Like I said, we’ll be unpacking this one for a while, folks, so hang on.
At least James Comey’s reputation with the department has been cleaned up.