Make no mistake about it. When William Barr ordered that the area around St. John's Church should be "cleared" for Trump, it was a crime against humanity.
Attorney General William Barr defended the shocking use of force on peaceful protesters outside the White House Monday, saying at a news conference on Thursday that difficulties with relocating authorities earlier in the day had forced the clash.
Flanked by federal law enforcement leaders at the Justice Department in his first public remarks since the extraordinary episode, Barr maintained that his decision to disperse the crowd followed signs that the crowd was "becoming increasingly unruly" and had nothing to do with a photo-op staged by President Donald Trump at a nearby church that took place minutes later.
"There was no correlation between our tactical plan of moving the perimeter out by one block and the President's going over to the church," Barr said.
The explanation came after criticism had mounted over the situation, with lawmakers and public figures, including the President's first defense chief, Jim Mattis, decrying the violent spectacle.Peaceably assembled Americans were violently assaulted on Barr's orders. This is not some abstract thing that can be excused away or considered a "minor blip" in our quest to hold the Trump Regime accountable. It was a criminal act.
I love the Democratic Party, but I am going to raise holy hell if, at some point, we do not address what Barr ordered and what happened to the Americans who were exercising their First Amendment rights of protest. If we sweep this under the rug and do nothing if Trump is thrown out of office, we will be giving every future American president the green light to use physical violence to intimidate and harass the American people.
This is one of those moments where we should take stock of the fact that we have an Attorney General who is so venal and corrupt as to be a walking, talking violation of everything we believe in.