House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) likened Attorney General William Barr to a “blob” after his testimony in front of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, July 28.
The speaker also accused Barr of acting like a “henchman” for President Donald Trump over the hearing on Capitol Hill.
“I just thought he was despicable. So beneath the dignity of an attorney general,” Pelosi told MSNBC.
“He was like a blob. He was like a, just a henchman for the president of the United States, instead of the attorney general of the United States of America,” she said.
Barr testified that it was “irresponsible” of Pelosi to have compared federal law enforcement to “stormtroopers,” after they were deployed to Portland to stop the unrest. He said her comments could possibly endanger the officers.
“You don’t send in people acting like storm troopers into the scene,” Speaker Pelosi says of AG Barr defending the use of federal force in his House testimony. “He should be answering for what he did at Lafayette Square … He was like a blob — just a henchman for the president.” pic.twitter.com/RGqBhEDJNC
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) July 29, 2020
Pelosi tried to deflect the criticism by going after the Trump administration’s decision to deploy federal law enforcement officers to certain cities.
“I said they acted like stormtroopers,” Pelosi said. “And they did and my colleagues have said that as well.”
“[P]eaceful protest is who we are and what we do. And do some other people come along and try to disrupt? Yes. But you don’t send in people acting like stormtroopers into the scene and evoking even more, even more unease and unrest,” she added.
However, Pelosi did call the officers stormtroopers in her tweets.
First Amendment speech should never be met with one-sided violence from federal agents acting as Trump’s secret police, especially when unidentified. This is disgraceful behavior we would expect from a banana republic — not the government of the United States.
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) July 18, 2020
“Federal courts are under attack. Since when is it OK to burn down a federal court?” Barr said in defending the administration’s move to send federal enforcement to Portland. “The U.S. Marshals have a duty to stop that and defend the courthouse, and that’s what we are doing in Portland. We are at the courthouse, defending the courthouse.”
“What makes me concerned for the country is this is the first time in my memory that the leaders of one of our two great political parties, the Democratic Party are not coming out and condemning mob violence and the attack on federal courts,” Barr said. “Why can’t we just say, you know, violence against federal courts has to stop? Could we hear something like that?”