Attorney General William Barr on Friday lambasted the political left for their onslaught of President Donald Trump at the 19th Annual Barbara K. Olson Memorial Lecture, and for falsely accusing the president of “shredding” constitutional norms.

Barr, at the lecture held at the Federalist Society’s 2019 National Lawyers Convention, jested at Democratic lawmakers for being unable to justify their claims of the president subverting the Constitution.

“One of the ironies of today is that those who oppose this president constantly accuse this administration of ‘shredding’ constitutional norms and waging a war on the rule of law. When I ask my friends on the other side, what exactly are you referring to? I get vacuous states, followed by sputtering about the Travel Ban or some such thing,” he said.

“While the president has certainly thrown out the traditional Beltway playbook, he was upfront about that beforehand, and the people voted for him,” Barr continued. “What I am talking about today are fundamental constitutional precepts. The fact is that this administration’s policy initiatives and proposed rules, including the Travel Ban, have transgressed neither constitutional, nor traditional norms, and have been amply supported by the law and patiently litigated through the Court system to vindication.”

Barr highlighted the importance of having a conservative mindset as it allows society to prosper in the long term, by adhering to a “rule of law” standard.

“We are interested in preserving over the long run the proper balance of freedom and order necessary for healthy development of natural civil society and individual human flourishing,” Barr explained. “This means that we naturally test the propriety and wisdom of action under a ‘rule of law’ standard. The essence of this standard is to ask what the overall impact on society over the long run if the action we are taking, or principle we are applying in a given circumstance, was universalized—that is, would it be good for society over the long haul if this was done in all like circumstances?”

The attorney general pointed out that progressives have an edge over conservatives in today’s age because they see politics as a belief, rather than something that benefits society as a whole.

“This highlights a basic disadvantage that conservatives have always had in contesting the political issues of the day. It was adverted to by the old, curmudgeonly Federalist, Fisher Ames, in an essay during the early years of the Republic,” Barr added. “In any age, the so-called progressives treat politics as their religion.”

Barr noted, blasting the political left, for caring little about being responsible of the consequences of their actions, and are ruthless in achieving their goals—even if the rules benefit only themselves.

“Their holy mission is to use the coercive power of the state to remake man and society in their own image, according to an abstract ideal of perfection. Whatever means they use are therefore justified because, by definition, they are a virtuous people pursuing a deific end,” Barr stressed.

“They are willing to use any means necessary to gain momentary advantage in achieving their end, regardless of collateral consequences and the systemic implications. They never ask whether the actions they take could be justified as a general rule of conduct, equally applicable to all sides,” he added. 

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