After watching a good bit of acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker’s testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, I came away with this major conclusion: I am doubly glad he is on his way out as head of the Department of Justice.
Committee members asked him — and pressed him — to answer a simple question: Do you believe special counsel Robert Mueller is engaged in a “witch hunt” of Donald Trump?
FBI Director Christopher Wray has said “no.” So has the AG-designate, William Barr. Both of those men stand firmly behind Mueller’s integrity and professionalism.
Whitaker’s answer? He didn’t want to comment on “an ongoing investigation.” He said it was “inappropriate.”
Hah! It wasn’t “inappropriate” for Wray to comment. Or for Barr. Whitaker, though, is hiding behind some kind of phony, bogus and dubious pretext that he cannot comment on an ongoing probe into whether Donald Trump’s campaign “colluded” with Russian operatives who attacked our electoral system in the 2016 presidential election.
None of the committee members asked him to comment on specifics of the probe. No one wanted him to give away any secrets. They asked a simple, declarative question that required a simple, declarative “yes” or “no” answer.
I happen to believe William Barr is a fine choice as attorney general. I trust him to be professional who will be beholden to the Constitution and not the president of the United States. This ain’t his first DOJ rodeo, given that he served as AG during Bush 41’s administration.
As for Matthew Whitaker, please go far away — as soon as possible.