Mazie Hirono Wants to Know if Barr Talked to White House About Mueller Spinoff Probes
Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) wants to know about any communication between Attorney General William Barr and White House staff regarding investigations spinning off from Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. She sent a letter to DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz and Office of Professional Responsibility Director Corey Amundson on Monday asking them to investigate if the Attorney General shared the names of spinoff cases with White House staff. Barr told lawmakers last week that he had not had "substantive" talks with White House staff about the 14 cases Mueller referred to the Justice Department, but that "it’s possible a name of a case was mentioned." Even mentioning names of cases could potentially interfere with investigations. "It would be highly inappropriate if Mr. Barr did in fact share case names with, and by default revealed the identity of, any defendants in those cases to the White House, particularly given that those same cases have been shielded from public view in the Special Counsel’s report," Hirono wrote in the letter, which she sent with Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) andSheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). Hirono accused Barr of betraying the trust of the American people. “Now the American people know you are no different from Rudy Giuliani or Kellyanne Conway or any of the other people who sacrificed their once-decent reputations for the liar and grifter who sits in the Oval Office,” Hirono told Barr last week during his Senate Judiciary Committee appearance. “You used every advantage of your office to create the impression that the president was cleared of misconduct. You selectively quoted fragments from the special counsel report, taking some of the most important statements out of context and ignoring the rest. You put the power and authority of the office of the attorney general and the Department of Justice behind a public relations effort to help Donald Trump protect himself.” She then told Barr he should resign. More on the letter here.