A day after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) accused Attorney General William Barr of illegally lying to Congress, a spokesperson for President Donald Trump suggested that House speakers should never accuse others of lying. Trump, however, has called many many political opponents liars, often with far less evidence.
The dispute centered around comments Barr made in congressional testimony falsely claiming that he did not know whether special counsel Robert Mueller had objected to the attorney general’s misleading four-page summary of Mueller’s report. Mueller had communicated his objections to Barr weeks earlier in two separate letters.
“The attorney general of the United States of America was not telling the truth to the Congress of the United States. That’s a crime,” Pelosi said Thursday, at her weekly news conference.
Steve Groves, the White House deputy press secretary was asked about the claims on Friday on MSNBC and responded that because Mueller’s letter was private, Barr might have opted not to reveal it on national television (thus making it okay to feign ignorance). “The idea that he would be called a liar or accused of perjury is just so outrageous that I don’t even know how to react to it,” he said.
“The fact that the speaker would take it upon herself to call him a liar is really, really inappropriate and beneath her office,” Groves continued.
But Groves apparently does not share the same concern about his own boss, who happens to be the president, calling others liars.
Throughout his 2016 campaign, Trump repeatedly called his opponents liars, often attacking then-presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) as “Lying Ted.” He also levied similar charges against Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D), and others.
As president, he has not shied away from calling his opponents, critics, former employees, his own Justice Department, and anyone else who upset him liars.
On Friday, he even accused Pelosi of lying and demanded a criminal investigation into her ties to Russia.
I hereby demand a second investigation, after Schumer, of Pelosi for her close ties to Russia, and lying about it. https://t.co/qCDljfF3wN
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 3, 2017
Last week, The Washington Post reported that Trump has already made more than 10,000 false or misleading claims since taking office.
Read more: thinkprogress.org