U.S. Attorney General William Barr will be a no-show Thursday at the House Judiciary Committee hearing.
The AG doesn’t want to be quizzed by committee staff lawyers, which is what Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler had planned for his testimony.
Hey, wait a second!
Let’s recall the confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. A woman had come forward and accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault when they were both much younger. The Senate Judiciary Committee, which conducted the hearing, decided to punt on questioning the woman, Christine Ford, who testified before the panel.
Committee Republicans handed off the questioning of Ford to — are you ready for it? — staff lawyers!
So, what was good enough for an accuser testifying at that earlier hearing ought to be good enough for the attorney general. Isn’t that fair?
What’s more, Congress is entitled under Article I of the U.S. Constitution to set its own rules for the way it conducts its hearings. That decision doesn’t rest with those who testify before a congressional panel.
Thus, Attorney General William Barr is reaching way beyond his grasp in declaring he won’t appear before the House Judiciary Committee.