House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) alleged that Attorney General William Barr had lied to the Congress and committed a “crime” on Thursday, May 2.
Pelosi made the comments first during a closed-door meeting and repeated them during a press conference afterward.
According to Politico, she told Rep. Charlie Crist (D-Fla.) during the private caucus meeting: “We saw [Barr] commit a crime when he answered your question.”
“He lied to Congress. He lied to Congress,” Pelosi told reporters during the press conference. “If anybody else did that, it would be considered a crime.”
“Nobody is above the law. Not the president of the United States, and not the attorney general,” she added.
Tune in as I speak with reporters following Attorney General Barr’s testimony in the Senate and as we look ahead to the House’s vote today on H.R. 9, the ClimateActionNow Act. https://t.co/2VBFEvrboJ
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) May 2, 2019
Minutes later, the Department of Justice (DOJ) slammed Pelosi’s comments as “baseless.”
“Speaker Pelosi’s baseless attack on the Attorney General is reckless, irresponsible and false,” DOJ spokeswoman Kerri Kupec told Fox News.
It’s unclear which part of the exchange from the April 9 hearing Pelosi was referring to, but likely it’s the one between Barr and Crist about Barr’s letter to Congress.
“Reports have emerged recently, General, that members of the special counsel’s team are frustrated at some level with the limited information included in your March 24 letter, that does not adequately or accurately necessarily portrayed the report’s finding,” Crist asked. “Do you know what they’re referencing with that?”
Barr said he didn’t.
“No, I don’t. I suspected that they probably want it more put out. But in my view, I was not interested in putting out summaries or trying to summarize because I think any summary, regardless of who prepares it, not only runs the risk of being underinclusive of overinclusive but also would trigger a lot of discussion and analysis. That really should wait everything coming out,” he answered.
BREAKING: Here is the full Barr-Crist exchange from April 9th in full context. Barr answers the question and goes on to summarize the Mueller letter. Pelosi is accusing Barr of lying by editing his comments pic.twitter.com/UlLvdA6ZnM
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) May 2, 2019
Right before Barr testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Washington Post reported that special counsel Robert Mueller had written a letter to Barr raising concerns about his 4-page summary on the Russia investigation report, saying it did not “fully capture the context, nature, and substance” of the probe.
However, the Washington Post report did include that Mueller said in a subsequent phone call with Barr that his concern is not about the accuracy of Barr’s letter to Congress.
BREAKING: Letter from Special Counsel Robert Mueller to Attorney General Barr. pic.twitter.com/oDJm6coP8G
— House Judiciary Dems (@HouseJudiciary) May 1, 2019
Barr confirmed the existence of the letter and phone call and clarified that Mueller didn’t think his letter to Congress is inaccurate.
AG Barr on his phone call with special counsel Robert Mueller after he released four-page summary: “I asked him if he was suggesting that the March 24 letter was inaccurate, and he said, no, but that the press reporting had been inaccurate.” https://t.co/EwrguiboDK pic.twitter.com/YPwrOrcpfU
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) May 1, 2019
“On Thursday morning I received a letter from Bob, the letter that’s just put into the record, and I called Bob and said, ‘What’s the issue here?’ and I asked him if he was suggesting the March 24 letter was inaccurate? And he said ‘no,’ but that the press reporting had been inaccurate, and that the press was reading too much into it,” he testified.
Epoch Times reporter Janita Kan contributed to this report.