House Judiciary Committee ‘considers’ holding Barr in contempt, needs to tell him they’ll do it


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If the House Intelligence Committee Chairman says Attorney General William Barr needs to go, then just maybe the House Judiciary Committee should ramp up from “discussing” the possibility of holding Barr in contempt to just doing it.

The Washington Post is reporting that the committee has held two closed-door meetings in the past 24 hours, and “decided that it would likely make a push for a Barr contempt citation if he skips a scheduled Thursday hearing or ignores their subpoena for the full report by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.” It is “likely” to do that.

Barr thus far has stonewalled the committee about his appearance Thursday on the grounds that they intend to allow staff attorneys on the committee to question him. The committee is also waiting on Barr to provide them the full, unredacted Mueller report by the end of Wednesday, but don’t expect him to comply. Maybe that’s the trigger they’ll use for the contempt threat, but it sure seems like they can skip right on ahead to telling him what the consequences of his refusal to cooperate will be.

Given Barr’s performance thus far with the Senate Judiciary Committee, it seems like the House Judiciary should just go ahead and issue that threat as a given: if Barr refuses to appear on the committee’s terms Thursday, he’s in contempt. Full stop.


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