Andrew McCarthy is always a reliable narrator of the labyrinthine intrigues that take place in the halls of justice.
His time as assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York was well spent, and for the past 15 years he has provided insight into the legal system as an analyst and columnist.
Therefore, it was a pleasure to read his new column at National Review called “The Big Lie That Barr Lied,” in which he demolished the claim that Attorney General Barr perjured himself in testimony before the House Appropriations Committee on April 9.
The breathless Democrats have been grasping at conspiracy theories to justify impeachment of someone. If Trump is too popular to risk it, then Barr will have to do. Or so it would seem based on the hysteria in both the House and Senate last week.
But McCarthy demonstrates in short order that Barr’s response to questioning by Rep. Charlie Crist, D-Fla., was entirely appropriate. He told Crist he didn’t know why Mueller’s team might be frustrated about his March 24 letter describing the conclusions of the Mueller report. In any case, Barr did speculate accurately that he thought Mueller’s team might have wanted more information put out immediately and not just Barr’s 4-page letter.
When we look at the actual words of this exchange, Barr’s testimony is clearly accurate. And I don’t mean accurate in the hyper-technical, Clintonesque “depends on what the definition of is is” sense. I mean straightforward, unguarded, and evincing a willingness to volunteer information beyond what the question sought.
There’s a lot more to the analysis, which you can read for yourself. McCarthy doesn’t bother to refute the allegation that Barr also “lied” to Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., in a separate exchange, but suffice it to say there is even less merit to that charge. Even the Washington Post fact checker could not describe either exchange as lying, but merely as “misleading at best.” For the Washington Post to make such a modest claim about a Republican, you know Barr is clean as a whistle.
I might also add that the greatest pleasure in reading McCarthy’s column wasn’t his defense of Barr, which anyone could do easily enough, but his measured takedown of fellow Fox News analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano.
It’s tough to make the perjury argument without any false or even inaccurate statements — though my Fox News colleague Andrew Napolitano did give it the old college try. As recounted by The Hill, he twisted himself into a pretzel, observing — try to follow this — that the attorney general “probably misled” Congress and thus “he’s got a problem” . . . although this purported dissembling didn’t really seem to be, you know, an actual “lie” so . . . maybe it’s not a problem after all. Or something. I assume that in his black-robe days, Judge Nap would have known better.
That was worth the price of admission right there!
My new book is “The Media Matrix: What If Everything You Know Is Fake,” which offers many examples of the press being the enemy of the truth. To support my work, please consider buying “The Media Matrix” or my “Why We Needed Trump” trilogy, which documents the downward spiral of the USA before Trump arrived on the scene. The books are available at Amazon in paperback or Kindle editions. Go here for a free sample: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/sitb/B07PDQBJM4